Category Archives: Second World War

Parachute Training 1943

This essay is part of the the Antoni Paszkiewicz project.

Since writing this in March 2015, I have obtained a copy of the History of the Polish Parachute Badge by Jan Lorys. As a result, some minor amendments have been made.

'Mass Dropping' at Tatton Park

‘Mass Dropping’ at Tatton Park

Toni Paszkiewicz arrived at RAF Ringway near Manchester in the late summer of 1943 for parachute training.

This was not the first training for his new role that he had undertaken. The Poles had a rigorous pre-parachute training regime at Largo House in Fife. From his conception of the idea of a Polish Parachute Brigade in early 1941, Colonel Stanislaw Sosabowski had placed great emphasis on fitness and preparing his men for the jumps course at Ringway and the rigours of war in the liberation of Poland. Continue reading

Commemoration

This essay is part of the the Antoni Paszkiewicz project.

Szeregowiec (Private) Toni Paszkiewicz (right) with an unknown Polish starszy szeregowiec (Lance Corporal).

Szeregowiec (Private) Toni Paszkiewicz (right) with an unknown Polish starszy szeregowiec (Lance Corporal).

2014 saw the 70th anniversary of the attack at Monte Cassino and the airborne attack at Arnhem, in both of which Polish troops played an important and memorable role.

Less well known, the 1st Polish Independent Parachute Brigade Group had suffered a number of deaths and injuries prior to the attack at Arnhem in September 1944. Among Toni’s papers is a newspaper cutting that commemorates four of his fellow soldiers who died preparing for an—then unknown—airborne attack in occupied Europe. 2014 is also the 70th anniversary of their death.[1]

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The Antoni Paszkiewicz Project

Antoni Paszkiewicz

Antoni Paszkiewicz

The Antoni Paszkiewicz project will examine the life and, in particular, the Second World War history of a young Polish man who was born in Vilno (now Vilnius, Lithuania) in 1921. During the Soviet invasion of Poland in 1939, he was arrested and imprisoned. Having been released to join ‘Ander’s Army’—the Polish Armed Forces in the East loyal to the Polish government-in-exile—he left Russia via Iran and Iraq in 1942. This army of Poles formed the basis of Polish II Corps, which fought in North Africa and Italy. Antoni Paszkiewicz subsequently joined the 1st (Polish) Independent Parachute Brigade. Following the war he settled in the United Kingdom. Continue reading