STAŠAITIS JONAS

1921 - 2012

Recognized 2005 

Buried in Salininkai old cemetery,
Vilnius, Lithuania
Graveyard coordinates:
54, 60 48 26 (š. pl.)
25, 27 23 48 (r. ilg.)
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GRAVE SITE
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JONAS STAŠAITIS
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MARKED GRAVESTONE
The Glik family – parents and 5 children – lived in the town of Kudirkos Naumiestis (Šakiai District), on the southwestern Lithuanian border. The town was occupied by the Germans on June 22, 1941. On July 4, the Jewish men were murdered, among them Jankel Glik, the head of the family, and his elder son Leib. At the beginning of September the same year, one of the policemen warned 19-year-old Pešė Glik that the Germans were next planning to murder the women and children. With the help of a friendly Lithuanian farmer, Pešė and her family managed to flee. On September 15, 1941, the Jewish population of Kudirkos Naumiestis was annihilated. The mother, Malka Glik, and four of her children, Pešė, b.1922, Kopel, b.1924, Mina, b. 1926, and Israel-Iser (later, Izaokas), b.1934, hid together and separately, during all the occupation period. There were more than 20 families and individuals that helped them for longer or shorter periods. Mina and Kopel, who then used the Lithuanian names, Ona and Petras, were accepted by their family’s friends, Justinas Dubininkas and his wife Marija, farmers in the village of Žalvederiai. The oldest of their own four children, Ramutė, b.1930, was of great help in caring for the two Jewish youngsters. In the same village of Žalvederiai, Malka Glik and her youngest, Israel-Iser, hid for some time with the Poniškaitis family. In spite of their poverty, Jonas Poniškaitis and his wife, Ona, hid and fed the Jews, equally sharing their meager food between them and their seven children. Their eldest son Antanas, b.1928, helped Malka to keep in touch with her other children and informed her about them and their living conditions. 
In the late summer of 1942, Ona’s brother, Antanas Skeltys, the Catholic priest and the head of a Selesian monastery in the town of Vitenai, visited the Poniškaitises. The priest blessed his sister’s family for their noble behavior, and suggested to ease their burden by taking Israel-Iser to his monastery, where several other orphans, some of them Jewish, were living. All of them were using Lithuanian names and their true identity was not known to most of the monks. Thus, for the first time, Israel-Iser parted with his mother and found himself in a strange place, many kilometers north of his native town, in Raseiniai district. Soon he was baptized and one of the monastery’s seminary students, Jonas Stašaitis, b.1921, became his godfather. Several months later, Jonas Stašaitis even moved the boy to his parents, Juozas Stašaitis and his wife, Agnieška. After Israel-Iser had left the monastery, his elder sister, Peše, continued hiding there for some time. From the summer of 1943, Israel-Iser lived with the Stašaitises in Patulupiai village (Raseiniai District). Through the priest Skeltys, the family members – parents and their five children - knew about the boy’s Jewish identity, but since he was fluent in Lithuanian and had a baptismal certificate there was no need to hide him. Israel-Iser (then called Antanukas) mingled with the local children and raised no suspicions. After the liberation in October 1944, he was reunited with his mother and older siblings. They were the only surviving Jews of their town, Kudirkos Naumiestis. The family remained in Lithuania and for years after the war maintained friendly relations with their many rescuers.
More information will be available soon
RESCUED PERSONS:
Izaokas Glikas
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JONAS STAŠAITIS WITH IZAOKAS GLIKAS
INFORMATION COLLECTED FROM:
db.yadvashem.org
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