A Hero to remember – Inka, a Polish victim of Communism

Danuta Siedzikówna, nom de guerre “Inka”, a member of the Polish underground Home Army is a Polish national heroine. 

She was a medical orderly in one of the units of the famous 5th Wilno Brigade of the Polish Home Army under the command of Major Zygmunt Szendzielarz “Łupaszko”. In 1946, at the age of 17, she faced a firing squad in a Gdańsk prison. The Communist courts sentenced her to death following a brutal and humiliating investigation, in which she gave no-one away. She joined the Polish Home Army at the age of 15 after witnessing her mother being executed by the Germans.

After World War II, she remained the part of the Polish Underground  State to fight for Poland’s independence. She handed bandages to enemies and never used a weapon.

Jordan Park, Kraków. Sculptor: Leszek Kruczek. Picture: British Poles

When she was sentenced to death, the president of People’s Republic of Poland, Boleslaw Bierut refused to grant her clemency. Inka was brutally interrogated before her execution.

She was murdered on 28 of September 1946 (six days before her 18th birthday) along with Feliks Selmanowicz “Zagończyk” by the Soviet-backed communist regime that came to power in Poland after World War II. They both refused blindfolds. They took the Sacrament of Penance.

Garrison Cemetery, Gdańsk. Picture: British Poles

When the prosecutor gave the order for the execution squad to fire, both prisoners simultaneously shouted (in Polish) “Long Live Poland!” (Niech żyje Polska!).

In Danuta’s last secret message she asked fellow prisoners to inform her Grandmother that she “acted as she should have”(zachowałam się jak trzeba).

She was only 17-year-old…

Maria Byczynski

Pictures: British Poles