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Vilna Gaon Museum of Jewish History
Vilniaus Gaono Žydų Istorijos Muziejus


Exhibit of the month

Published: 2019-05-23

Pranas Vocelka a Czech from Kaunas, risked his life to lead his family into safety out of the Kaunas ghetto among them where his wife Feiga and three children – Marija, Zofija and Juozas as well as a strangers’ child – Julijana Zarchi, whom Vocelka brought back to her grandparents. Pranas’ family lived in an apartment, which had no windows, nor did it seem to have any visual entrance. Pranas Vocelka kept his relations with the ghetto prisoners and rescuers of Jews, as he frequently visited the home of Helen Holzman. Vocelka was known as a master for creating and counterfeiting documents for Jews who were in hiding. This is how he managed to help many people to survive, not only his relatives, but also Rozalija Osipavičienė (Chaitinaitė), her daughters Zofija (now living in Kazakhstan), a former colleague (Šimon Joselevičius) children Pesach and Chana as well as other Jews living in the Kaunas ghetto.

The counterfeit passport Pranas Vocelka created for his wife Feiga in the name of Cecilija Jansonsaitė-Morkunienė.

Prepared by Jovita Stundžiaitė, Department for Commemoration of Rescuers of Jews; translated by Samanta Gudziūnaitė.
© Image from the VGSJM Department for Commemoration of Rescuers of Jews
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