For years Neta Avidar and me have been aware of the fact that any mention of the events concerning Lipowa 7 was missing from the site or its whereabouts.
We raised the subject with former Mayor Andrzej Pruszkowski. He told me that the ground had been sold to a private investor and the matter therefore does not lie in his hands.
During the year 2006 construction on the site has commenced. I verified with sources within the municipality who the entrepreneur was. I received a phone number. I dialed the number and reached a person by the name of Avihoo Shore, who was chief engineer of Plaza Centers Poland.
Plaza Centesr is the arm of Moti Zyser the famous Israeli entrepreneur. This company engages in construction of malls around Europe.
I told Avihoo Shore about the history of the site. For him it was a total surprise, since nobody had informed them what had transpired there during the war.
Avihoo Shore has contacted me with Rucha Lewine who at the time had been responsible for Moti Zyser's European activities.
I met her in Tel Aviv and told her about the site's history. She responded that it will be an honorable duty for the group to take care of the commemoration of the place.
In Lublin we established contacts with Plaza Centers engineer Serge Alpern who carried out onsite supervision of the whole project. Mr. Alpern was aware of Plaza Centers undertaking to establish proper commemoration on the site.
Even though the mall was sold to a French company Plaza Centers maintained their obligation with respect to commemoration. We discussed putting on the site memorial plaques.
I maintained that since the prisoner`s language was either Polish or Yiddish the order of preferability should be Polish Yiddish English Hebrew since eventually there was room for 3 plaques only. Hebrew has been dropped, since we believe that almost any Israeli who visits the place is able to understand English.
In order to conclude the work some arrangements needed to be carried out.
Robert Kuwalek was in charge of drafting the historical content in Polish.
Our friend and community member Michael Rozenbush translated the Polish version into Yiddish and English. He consulted in this project Prof. Monika Adamczyk Garbowska who in turn consulted Roman Litman head of the Jewish community in Lublin.
Execution of the works was taken by Srge Alpern and financed by Plaza Centers.
We thank Serge Alpern, Robert Kuwalek, Michael Rozenbush, Monika Adamczyk Garbowska for their assistance.
Special thanks to Moti Zyser and Plaza Centers for financing the project and carrying it through. Special thanks also to Rucha Lewine who so willingly and gracefully agreed to take care of the commemoration project.
The conclusion from this whole experience is that our presence in Lublin does matter.
The whole project has been successfully carried out thank to our connections with the city authorities and many of its key figures.
Commemorating the history of those Jewish prisoners of war who were also Polish soldiers (and probably the last ones wearing Polish uniform during the war) is a sad but important chapter in our history but also in the history of the Polish people.
Establishment of this project is a proof of how fruitful can this connection between our organization and the city of Lublin be.