Retired KU professor receives WWII medal

Cezary Wisniewski received Poland's Medal of Valor award 75 years after fighting against the Nazis.

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July 27, 2021 - 7:30 AM

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — A retired University of Kansas professor received Poland’s Medal of Valor this weekend more than 75 years after he fought with the Polish resistance against the occupying forces of Nazi Germany during World War II.

Polish Air Force Major Gen. Cezary Wisniewski who is based at the Polish embassy in Washington D.C. visited Jarek Piekalkiewicz’s home in Lawrence, Kansas, Saturday to give him Poland’s second-highest combat honor on his 95th birthday.

Wisniewski said the honor was overlooked during the war and then the post-war communist government of Poland refused to honor the country’s wartime resistance fighters. The recommendation that Piekalkiewicz receive the medal for his efforts was recently discovered in Poland’s archives, according  to the Lawrence Journal-World.

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