WWII refugee shares his story in new book

Tsawwassen's Marian Wiacek, who was deported from Poland to Siberia during the Second World War, tells his story with his new memoir, Window to Freedom: A Journey of Survival.

Wiacek, 86, who used his old journals to write the book, was forced out of his home, along with his mother and siblings, in Korzec by Soviet soldiers in February of 1940. He was only 10.

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"Somehow at that age I managed to take it as a reality in a sense," he says.

His father had already been taken away by Soviet secret police for being a captain in the Polish Reserve and was eventually killed with thousands of other officers in the Katyn woods, a press release about the book notes.

"(The book) documents the story of a youngster who used his intelligence, resourcefulness and determination to help not only himself but his younger siblings as well as his mother, survive conditions of starvation and terror while on a journey that lasted seven years," the release adds. The journey took the young refugee from Siberia to Persia, Africa, Palestine and eventually England.

Wiacek says it took about two years to write the book, a project he concentrated on after his wife Danuta passed away.

He first came to Canada in 1973 and worked for Duracell as a product developer and manager.

Wiacek now lives with his daughter and her family in Tsawwassen.

He has a book signing scheduled for Saturday, April 9 from 1 to 3 p.m. at Albany Books in Tsawwassen.

For more on his self-published book, visit www.windowtofreedom. com.

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