Memoirs - the book

The memoirs were originally written in 1994, after Eve Drobot visited my father in Sydney and persuaded him to document his account of just how he survived the war, a subject which, for some reason, was never raised. Dictated to his wife Irena who typed them on a clunky old typewriter in their Vaucluse apartment,  with handwritten notes and corrections they read just as he spoke - with a familiar and comfortable  Polish-English accent and Polish phrases translated into delightful English.

In 1999 I took on the task of transcribing them into electronic form. Some 90 plus pages were scanned, put through optical character recognition software, read and corrected. The result was a document which can be read here.  The next few years saw the advent of self publishing web sites and Eve Drobot, together with her husband Jack Kapica, both professional journalists, undertook the task of turning the manuscript into a book.

The result is an extraordinary tribute to my father's ingenuity and courage. I know that he would have been extremely grateful for all the work that went into the publication and probably considerably embarrassed at creating such an interest in his story - after all his story is not unique. Many holocaust survivors have had similar, and indeed much worse experiences. Regrettably his story is the only one in the Djament family to have been told in some degree of detail.  His twin brothers, who also lived through the war, would no doubt have had equally fascinating tales of survival.

Adam Rutkowski, June 2012

In 2018 my 13 year old granddaughter Georgia wrote a summary of the book as part of of her school project.  I know that my father, and her great grandfather Julek would have been very proud of her.

PS Copies of the book have been donated to various Jewish organisations and libraries.


Book Cover Page