[Ger-Poland-Volhynia] Roots Report From Ukraine

Don Miller dnmiller at whiz.to
Thu May 29 22:19:59 PDT 2008

May 27, 2008

Zhitiomir -- I was running pretty fast earlier this week and so I didn't have time
to include what was perhaps the great find of all on our Volhynian Village
Adventure Tour.  And that was relatives.  A whole tribe of first cousins,
and extended family, tons of them, that just kept coming out of the
woodwork for Michael and Anita Wasilewski (brother and sister) from the

Michael and Anita's father, Franz, was born in Lubarska Huta, near
Zhitomir in 1922.  He left Ukraine in 1941 and eventually made his way to
the UK, where he re-married.  He never returned to Ukraine or had any
further contact with his family (wife and children).  He seldom talked
about his shadowy past and expressly told Michael and Anita never to go
with a name like Wasilewski.

Well, a few ago, Michale employed a genealogical research firm from Kiev
who found his first cousin living in Dovbysh.  Michael began a
correspondence with her, but had no idea of how extensive his remaining
family was in Ukraine, and in other parts of the world.  He was
overwhelmed when a first cousin and his wife from Kazakhstan met him at
the airport and a few days met a half-sister from Russia (who traveled
many days on the train to get to Zhitomir), whom he didn't know he had,
and then met his father's first wife, who also arrived from some wherein
remote Russia to met Michael and Anita.  You can imagine the reunion they
had, meeting each other for the first time and trying to catch up on the
past.  The last day, a relative brought out a photo album and in it was a
photo of the little shack in the woods where the father once lived, and
had painted as the single reminder of his past.  It was almost more
emotionally than the two could bear.  This, too, will be written up in an
upcoming Journal of SGGEE.  All of which is to say once again, this was a
wonderfully successful tour

Don Miller
Tour Member
PS  A special thanks to Jerry Frank who helped locate Michael and Anita's
villages, a reminder that we have a great cadre of people at SGGEE.

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