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Name: UPA medical services
Volume: 23
Editor in Chief: IE. Shtendera
Co-editor in Chief: P.J. Potichnyj
Editor(s): M. Ripeckyj
Sponsors: Maria and Modest Ripeckyj
Publication Year: 1992
ISBN (Canada): 0-920092-30-6
Pages Count: 480

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In any army, the medical service plays a significant role. A well-organized medical service is important not only because it provides help to the wounded and sick looks after the general health of the soldiers, sees to their proper nourishment and tries to prevent illnesses, especially infectious diseases, but also because its efficient functioning has a major effect on the army's morale. An awareness on the part of the soldier that should he be wounded or fall ill, he will get the necessary medical care, both on the battlefield and behind the front lines, increases his feeling of personal security and makes him more battle-worthy. In establishing the Medical Service, the founders of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) tried to make use of the experience gained by the Ukrainian armed forces during the First World War, that is, by the UNR [1] army and the UHA. [2]

The nature of the UPA, which waged its struggle on enemy territory and applied partisan tactics, did not allow for an organizational structure like that used in regular armies. The UPA needed to have a centralized leadership, while at the same time allowing insurgent units to have as much autonomy as possible. The same was true of the UPA Medical Service.

The organizational structure of the UPA was not based on regiments and divisions, but rather, was divided territorially into UPA-North, UPA-West, UPA-South and UPA-East. [3] Each territorial unit was divided into military regions (V.O. -- Voyenna Okruha), which in their turn were divided into military districts (T.V. -- Taktychny Vidtynok). Within each military district, there operated two or three battalions. Each battalion was composed of companies and platoons.

The smallest battle unit in the UPA system to operate autonomously was the company. The platoon operated independently only in exceptional circumstances. In terms of its functioning, the partisan company differed essentially from a company of a regular army, in spite of the fact that it was similarly structured. In a regular army, the training, the technical aspects and especially, the very complexity of the machine which the army is, serve to minimize the individual character of the company. However, in the UPA 's partisan system the company acted largely independently. Two companies having the same number of men with the same training and the same armaments constituted two totally different forces, the worth and weight of which were determined primarily by the characters of the company commanders and the battle-worthiness of the soldiers. Only for larger operations did these autonomous companies join together into battalions; it was even less often that several battalions joined together for common action.

The UPA Medical Service followed the same structure. At the highest levels, that is, from the military district upward, the tasks of the Medical Service were mainly those of organization and coordination. Direct assistance to sick and wounded soldiers was provided by the physicians and medical assistants who were attached to specific battalions, companies or platoons. Companies which were more active and engaged in more operations were given the better qualified medical personnel.

Medical work within UPA units was characterized by an important feature. The companies did not stay in a single location, but were constantly on the move. Normally, companies were attached to a particular territory, where they had their stores of equipment, food supplies and medical stations. However, the units were often obliged to operate on territory other than their own, or to engage in raids at which times they had no access to needed supplies.

The medical personnel who worked within UPA units could not simultaneously work in underground field hospitals. This problem was usually solved by having the more heavily wounded soldiers cared for by the Ukrainian Red Cross (UChKh).

The Ukrainian Red Cross was established in the newly-formed Ukrainian state back in 1918, in accordance with the requirements of the Geneva Convention, and operated during the period of Ukrainian independence up to 1921. With the end of Ukrainian statehood, the UChKh was no longer eligible to be a member of the International Red Cross and could not enjoy the privileges of membership. However, the UChKh continued its activities, not under its own name, but under the cover of other, legal organizations, and helped the victims of the armed struggle, prisoners of war, invalids, widows and orphans.

During the Second World War, in the first days of the German occupation of Ukraine, Ukrainian physicians and community activists renewed the activity of the the UChKh without asking permission from the occupying force. [4]

In June, 1941, at the initiative of Ukrainian physicians, a UChKh unit was established in Lviv. Other such units were quickly organized in various locations. The first director of the UChKh in Lviv was Dr. Leonid Kurchaba. Later, the director's tasks were taken over by Dr. Halyna Bilenka-Wreciona (Vretsiona), and then by Dr. Toma Worobec (Vorobets). [5]

Immediately after the Germans occupied Volyn, the UChKh was organized in Rivne.

In September 1941, the UChKh began activities in Kiev, under the directorship of Prof Fedir Bohatyrchuk. Among those who played an active role in the UChKh in Eastern Ukraine were the writer, Liudmyla Ivchenko, and Dr. Maria Yasenetska. [6] The UChKh operated not only through the work of its staff, but through the efforts of the public at large. Its main activity in 1941-42 was helping Ukrainian prisoners of war, Red Army soldiers who were being kept in German camps. [7] The German military command did not officially recognize the UChKh, but to a certain extent, tolerated its activity. With the advent of civilian rule, the Gestapo demanded the eradication of the UCHKh. The occupying power gradually destroyed the whole network of UChKh units through prohibition, threats, arrests and even executions.

In August 1941, the Gestapo arrested Dr. Leonid Kurchaba, the first UChKh director in Lviv; he died in the Monteliupich prison in Krakow. In Kiev, the Gestapo arrested the UChKh leadership, including the director, Prof Fedir Bohatyrchuk, on July 1O, 1942. Those arrested were subsequently released, but the UChKh was obliged to cease its activity. In Volyn, too, UChKh activity was banned Under German terror, the UChKh was no longer able to function on any territory of Ukraine. However, UChKh members continued their humanitarian activities in various ways.

The only place where the UChKh continued to work was within the UPA. It is important to note that the major role in the organization of the UChKh was played by women. In 1943-44, the UChKh's tasks were assumed by the OUN women's network. In 1943, Kateryna Zarytska became the first director of the underground UChKh. After her, the duties were assumed by Halina Didyk, who carried them out until her arrest in 1950. [8]

Women made a significant contribution to the UChKh and all other sectors of the independence struggle which was waged during and after the Second World War; however, this is a very large topic and deserves to have a separate volume.

The Ukrainian Red Cross was divided into three sections: medical, pharmacy and social services. Collaboration between the UPA Medical Service and the UChKh was so close that it is impossible to clearly differentiate their spheres of the activity. The main difference lay in the fact that the physicians and medical personnel of the UPA Medical Services came under the military command of the company or battalion commander, while UChKh staff working in the field were subject to their UChKh superior and did not come under military command.

The UChKh, or as it was known in some areas, the Health Service, worked at all levels of the underground network, that is, at the Okruha, Nadraion, Raion, and if possible, local unit levels. Underground hospitals and medical centres were established on the Raion or Nadraion levels, but no central field hospitals were built on the regional level. The hospitals were usually small, so that should they be discovered by the enemy, no great losses would occur. Another reason for their small size was that it was very difficult to transport wounded and sick soldiers over long distances. In most cases, the regional UChKh centres were not involved in the administration of hospitals, but only coordinated the activity of the lower cells and saw to staffing, training of personnel and medical supplies.

During wartime, a regular army has a front zone and territory behind the front line, but for UPA, this distinction did not exist. However, for the sake of analogy, one could say that the physicians and medical assistants who worked within UPA units were working at the front, while those who were part of the underground administration, or treated the wounded and sick in medical hide-outs and underground hospitals, were working behind the front lines. The conditions in which the two groups worked were somewhat different, but both were faced with enormous problems. The ever-present threat of being killed existed for everyone. The physician or medical assistant working within an UPA unit took part in battles like any other soldier. Those who worked at medical stations were constantly threatened by the possibility that their "hospital" would be uncovered by the enemy, in which case the likelihood of escape would be minimal.


The earliest experience of organizing an UPA Medical Service was gained in Volyn. This experience was later applied by medical workers on other territories. When the medical Service had to carry out difficult tasks, it was helped by the UChKh.

In 1941, the UChKh in Rivne was directed by Dr. M. Kornyliv-Vasyliv, and the social service section was headed by the UNR Colonel, Leonid Stupnytskyi, who was later the Chief of Staff of the UPA Supreme Command.

Working in the social service section with Col. Stupnytskyi was the renowned public and political activist, Dr. Kharytia Kononeko. The UChKh existed in Volyn up to the time of the creation of the Reichskonunissariat Ukraine in Rime. When the occupying German force forbade the use of the name UChKh, its medical and charitable work was continued under the main task of the Aid Committee of the city of Rivne. In 1941-42, the main task of the UChKh in Volyn was, as stated earlier, to care for the local population and help Red Army prisoners of war in German camps.

In 1942-43, when insurgent units were first being formed, UChKh activists and some physicians helped to organize medical care and provide supplies for the UPA. The first to suffer for contacts with the underground and providing help to UPA soldiers were the physicians Drs. Hanna and Petro Roshchynskyi in Kremianets in Volyn. They were arrested by the Gestapo on February 23,1943 and executed that same evening at the Kremianets prison.

Col. L. Stupnytskyi, who in 1942 was named commander of the police school in Rivne, went over to the UPA with a whole group of students in 1943. The duties of director of the UChKh social service (later the Aid Committee) were taken over by Dr. Kharytia Kononenko. She maintained contact with Col. Stupnytskyi and looked after staffing and provision of medications for the Medical Service. Kharytia Kononenko was arrested by the Gestapo on July 15, 1943, and executed after three months of the imprisonment.

The UPA began broader operations in Volyn in early spring 1943, and as a result there was an increase in the number of wounded and sick. There arose a need to organize a medical care system, and an underground Ukrainian Red Cross. This task was assumed by the OUN women's network. In areas where no OUN women's network and no underground UChKh existed, the UPA Medical Service was assisted by nationally-concious women and medical professionals.

Early in 1943, underground UPA hospitals were organized on the pattern of regular army field hospitals. They were set up in villages, far from German garrisons, and sometimes in small towns; where possible, small hospitals were also built in forests. This type of hospital system enabled the small force of doctors and medical staff to care for larger numbers of patients in a single place, without losing time in traveling.

It become clear after a certain time that for security reasons, it was not realistic to try to operate larger field hospitals. German raids encompassed even the more out-of-the-way villages, which may have appeared to be safe, and the forests of southern Volyn. Sometimes German military units launched sudden attacks on medical stations, and on many occasions wounded UPA soldiers had to be evacuated from, field hospitals in battle conditions. It was no safer further north, in the Polissia wilderness. Some of the forests there, or at least parts of them, were under the control of Soviet partisans. Because of these threats, hospital staff and patients were assigned in small groups to different locations. Whenever possible, they were located in areas where there were hiding places. Larger field hospitals operated only in regions which were protected by insurgent detachments and from which, in case of enemy attack, the wounded could be systematically evacuated. With the approach of the German-Soviet front, even the system of small field hospitals had to be modified, and the hospitals were moved to underground hide-outs and bunkers.

The activity of the UPA Medical Service depended upon various factors, the main one being the policy of the occupying enemy force in a given territory. On the territory of the Reichskommissariat Ukraine, the colonial policy of the Germans was merciless and brutal; in Halychyna the terror applied by the regime was not as great. The Germans annexed Halychyna to the General Government as a district with special status because it was formerly part of the Austro-Hungarian state. The occupying power applied a policy of gradual Germanization, but granted some autonomous rights to the local population. The medical system, which came under the German administration, allowed some possibility of free action.

Taking advantage of these easier conditions, Ukrainian physicians tried to protect the health of the local population. Some doctors even managed to get positions with the Medical Guild in Lviv, while others were named county physicians. One such physician who held an important post in the Medical Guild was Dr. Volodymyr Wreciona (Vretsiona), formerly an active OUN member. He tried to use his influence to have Ukrainian doctors appointed to responsible positions in the medical administration. The role played by Dr. Volodymyr Wreciona is explained by Dr. Yaroslav Wojewidka (Voievidka) in the obituary written by him in 1970. [9]

Ukrainian doctors were also able to have private practices and to work in hospitals and clinics. The UPA command and the directors of the Medical Service and the UChKh took account of all these factors in organizing the UPA medical system on the territory of Halychyna Instead of building up a wide scale UChKh network with large field hospitals, as was initially done in Volyn they organized smaller hospitals and medical stations.

When there were insufficient professional medical personnel in the units, the UPA Medical Service relied on physicians who were practicing in the area. The more seriously wounded and sick were often taken to doctors in outpatient clinics, or brought by night to the physicians' private homes. Sometimes doctors visited sick UPA soldiers in forest hospitals or temporary medical stations set up in villages. In some instances, wounded or sick insurgents were given beds in city hospitals.

The position of the physician carrying out these tasks was extraordinarily difficult. His professional and ethical obligations did not permit him to refuse to give help to a wounded or sick person; however, for living up to his obligations, he was threatened with detention, prison or death.

Physicians who helped the UPA had to act with extreme caution, in secret from the German and Soviet occupying powers. Nobody could know about their activities except for a small circle of trustworthy people; for that reason, it is now impossible to reconstruct a complete list of these doctors' names. Some of these physicians remained in Ukraine, while others made their way abroad. Because of the terror that threatened their families and close associates, they remained silent about their work. Most of these physicians are no longer living; they took the secrets of their collaboration with the underground to the grave with them.


The UPA Medical Service had to deal with many difficulties: the difficult conditions in which the liberation struggle was taking place, the small number of doctors, the shortage of medications and medical supplies. Depending on the area and the circumstances, UPA physicians and medical assistants provided help to the sick and wounded in different ways. If the situation was relatively peaceful, or in periods of UPA offensive actions, only the lightly wounded remained with their units. Particularly difficult times for the Medical Service were when enemy soldiers were waging major actions against the UPA, blockades of the area were in place, or when UPA companies were raiding through foreign territories. Another difficult time for the wounded was when the UPA units were breaking through the German-Soviet front. At this time, the companies were isolated from their "hospitals " and it was impossible to get the wounded to them.

In order to survive this difficult period, even a healthy and strong soldier had to make a great effort, so how could the seriously wounded cope? They had to share the fate of their units, which often went without food or rest, were constantly on the march or engaging in skirmishes or battles with the enemy, cut of if from populated centres and living out in the rain, snow and cold. During these times, the Medical Service was called upon to do work which went far beyond its capacities. The doctors and medical assistants did everything they could, and they were helped in this by all the soldiers, including the wounded themselves.

It was somewhat easier for UPA doctors to do their work under the German occupation than under the Soviet. Given insurgent conditions, the supplies of medications, bandages and instruments were relatively abundant and the Medical Service still had at its disposal a fairly large number of qualified workers.

In the Carpathians, after the signing of the non-aggression pact between the UPA and the Hungarian army, it became possible to send the seriously wounded to Hungarian hospitals.

However, when UPA units found themselves under Soviet occupation, conditions became much worse. The whole burden of providing help to the sick and wounded now had to be assumed by the UPA-UChKh medical network; all other possibilities disappeared. And the UPA Medical Service and UChKh units were obliged to make increasing use of hide-outs and underground hospitals.

Under the German occupation, hide-outs had not generally been used. At that time, hiding places served mainly for secret storage of medications, medical equipment, food, weapons and ammunition, but less often for housing the wounded. In the beginning stages of the insurgent struggle, the use of hide-outs was scorned, not only by battle units, but by medical units too.

But from the moment of the return of the Soviets, hide-outs and bunkers became a real necessity. In 1945, in some areas, the Soviets threw units of the Red Army, which were returning from Germany, into battle against the UPA, as reinforcements for their militia, NKVD troops and other special units, and the UPA's areas of operation were blockaded. The offensive against the UPA encompassed not only the territory of the Ukrainian SSR, but also the ethnic Ukrainian areas of Poland. However, this campaign against the UPA was not as successful as the Soviet command had expected. The Red Army soldiers, who included a significant proportion of Ukrainians, did not show any desire to fight against Ukrainian insurgents. They were just glad that they had survived the war. In 1945-47, the campaign by NKVD and NKGB and other special units against the UPA increased.

Although the circumstances inside the Ukrainian SSR and in "democratic" Poland were somewhat different, on both territories the UChKh was obliged to carry out its activities in underground hide-outs. The hide-outs were very useful for difficult assignments, including those involving the treatment of the wounded and sick.

Depending on the territory and circumstances, different types of hideouts, or "hospitals", were constructed They did not have a standard form, but rather, reflected the inventiveness of individual insurgents.

Generally, they consisted of only one room; only rarely did they have several rooms. Various types of hiding places were also constructed by the local population. In critical situations, wounded soldiers had to make use of primitive hiding places. In exceptional cases, it was possible for one, and with difficulty, two persons to hide temporarily in a "wolf's hole". This was a hole quickly dug out in the woods and covered with branches.

Hide-outs and underground bunkers were used not only by the UChKh, but also by the UPA and armed underground fighting units. There was no great difference between the hide-outs and bunkers, as both served as secret hiding places for insurgents. The main difference lay in the fact that bunkers were suitable for active defence, whereas hide-outs were suitable only for passive defence. The bunkers were used by battle units and also by the lightly wounded. In case of discovery by the enemy, they resorted to armed resistance and attempted to escape.

Medical hide-outs provided passive defence by virtue of being concealed as much as possible, with all the rules of secrecy observed. In the case of discovery by the enemy, the situation of those in the hide-out was hopeless.

The battle units made use of concealed hiding places mainly in the winter, while the medical personnel and wounded stayed in them in all seasons.

Various methods of construction were used for underground hiding places, depending on whether they were in forests, mountains, plains or populated centres. It was imperative that a hiding place not stand out from its surroundings. The hiding place had a small entrance, through which entered not only able-bodied people, but through which wounded soldiers, food and medical supplies had to be carried in. Every time somebody entered the hide-out, traces were left which could not easily be concealed.

In the construction of underground hiding places, care had to be taken to have sufficient air circulation, toilet facilities and a way of eliminating wastes. One important requirement for a medical hide-out was to have a supply of water. Whenever possible, the hide-outs were built close to streams, from which water could be supplied in various ways. Only occasionally was it possible to find an underground spring -- an invaluable resource for a medical hide-out. In the winter, water was often obtained by melting snow. It was not easy to solve the problem of lighting and heating in medical hide-outs. Gas or carbide lamps were not always available and often only a night light or candle was used With lighting of this type, it was not easy to perform surgery, dress wounds or organize medications.

For reasons of security, it was accepted practice that a hide-out would be built by the insurgents who would later make use of it. The smallest possible number of people were aware of its location. Medical hide-outs, or "hospitals", were usually built in densely-wooded areas by soldiers from battle units. The company commander, in agreement with the UChKh director, would assign this task to one of his squadrons. The soldiers would be taken at night to the place where the hide-out was to be built. While working on its construction, the soldiers were deprived of any contact with the outside world and they did not know exactly where the hide-out was located. In the construction of this type of hiding place, attention had to be paid to a number of details which may appear to be insignificant, but which are of great importance to a person staying in the underground hide-out.

Increasing pressure from the enemy obliged the UPA to perfect its techniques for building hiding places and the acquired experiences proved to be very useful.


The materials published in this volume of Litopys UPA are organized into five chapters. The first chapter consists of articles about the Ukrainian Red Cross (UChKh). The first article, "The Ukrainian Red Cross in Kiev, 1941-1942", is by the writer Liudmyla Ivchenko, who played an important role in the UChKh in Eastern Ukraine in 1941-42. She gives a brief account of the organization of the UChKh in 1918, and then describes its renewed activity in Kiev in 1941. In her memoir, she names many of the leading workers of this charitable institution.

The next article, "The Ukrainian Red Cross", by Dr. Toma Worobec, has a similar theme. We are publishing the part of the article which describes the work of the UChKh in Ukraine. The author characterizes the activity of this organization in Halychyna and speaks of the care provided to wounded soldiers and other forms of assistance given to the UPA. [10]

The chapter also includes the article "The UChKh in Halychyna" by Irena Savytska-Kozak, which tells about Kateryna Zarytska and the formation of the UChKh in Halychyna.

The second chapter contains excerpts from the memoirs of military and other authors who, although not workers of the UPA medical system, make mention in their writing of the Medical Service or UChKh in Volyn and Polissia. Unfortunately, there is a lack of documents and memoirs written by medical personnel which would describe the activity of UPA medical units in Volyn.

Colonel M. Omeliusik, the director of the operational unit of the UPA North Command, who was familiar with the UPA's military and administrative structure and its battle operations, also provides some information about medical problems in his article "The UPA in Volyn in 1943".

Other authors from whose memoirs we publish excerpts in this chapter are: Vasyl Mnovskyi ("Nrabenko"), Volodymyr Novak ("Krylatyi"), Maksym Skorupskyi ("Max"), Dr. Mykhailo Danyliuk "Blakytnyi"), Panylo Shumuk ("Boremsky") and Sophia Stepaniuk.

In these writings, the authors describe various aspects of the activity of UPA medical units in Volyn and add to the information provided by Col. Omeliusik. In some cases, they only provide dry data; in others, they paint vivid pictures of what they saw and experienced. The long excerpt from the memoirs of Sophia Stepaniuk gives a portrait of the noted UChKh activist in Volyn, Dr. Kharytia Kononenko.

The third chapter presents memoirs, articles and sketches by authors who served in the UPA Medical Service or underground UChKh units, or who worked with these units.

The sketch by Modest Ripeckyj, based on his personal experiences, describes the formation and work of the Medical Service in the battalion commanded by V. Mizernyi ("Ren").

Bohdan Huk ("Skala"), the author of the article "Physicians and Medical Personnel of the UPA's Military District" limits himself to a factual description of UChKh activity on territory outside of the Ukrainian SSR.

The report by Bohdan Kruk ("Melodia"), "The UChKh in the Current Liberation Struggle", was written in 1947, right after the author's arrival in West Germany. It is published in its original form.

UPA medical workers often made use of curative herbs in the treatment of sick or wounded soldiers. The use of plants for healing has long been popular in Ukraine. In insurgent conditions, there was a lack of necessary textbooks; for that reason, some UChKh workers prepared booklets about the practical application of curative plants. In this chapter, we publish the introductory section of Herbs and Their Use, which was written by the medical student, "Melodia". He served as Health Service (UChKh) officer for the Lemko region.

The memoir by Dr. Vasyl Granas Onyskiv, "Medical Courses Given near Trukhaniv" was written in 1991. The author describes his activities, while still a medical student, as instructor of UChKh medical assistants in the Carpathian Mountains. "Gestapo Brutality in the Kalush Region" is the memoir of the county physician, Dr. Dmytro Kapitan, in which he describes events which he witnessed. Also published here is a letter from Dr. Roman Moroz, formerly chief county physician in Ternopil, in which he speaks of his contact with the UPA.

The third chapter also includes the memoirs of UChKh workers. In a longer work Anna Martyniuk ("Hania") describes her personal experiences as a UChKh medical assistant in the Kholm area and her later experiences in prisons and camps. Natalka Kosarchyn-Marunchakspeaks of her UChKh work in the Khodoriv area, Olena Lebedovych writes about the Uhniv area, Emilia Stefaruk speaks about the Zhabie area of the Hutsul region and Maria Bodnarenko-Ripeckyj, Anna Karvanska-Teliatynska and UPA medical assistant Osyp Levytskyi write about the Peremyshl area.

A separate chapter contains biographies of physicians and leading UChKh figures. It begins with the biographies of UChKh chairwoman Kateryna Zarytska-Soroka and Hanna Didyk. This is followed by biographies of doctors who were holding post in the UPA and about whom information could be obtained: Dr. Yuriy Lypa, Dr. Yuriy Davydenko, Dr. Yaromyr Olesnycky, Dr. Oleksiy Zelenuk and Dr. Volodymyr Maniuch. Also given here are biographical data about physicians who carried out regular medical duties but treated Ukrainian insurgents when the need arose.

The UPA medical system included, in addition to Ukrainian doctors, physicians of other nationalities who worked in various positions or provided medical assistance to Ukrainian insurgents. Most of these doctors were Jewish, [11] but there were also some Germans, Slovaks and Poles. [12] A separate section of this chapter is dedicated to the activities of doctors of other ethnic groups.

The article by Dr. Abraham Sterzer, a Jewish physician who was in the UPA in 1943-44 and now lives in Israel, was written in English. The author describes his stay in the UPA and brings up the question of Ukrainian-Jewish relations. Dr. Petro Mociuk provides a memoir about Dr. Samuel Neuman, the physician of the UPA officers' school in the Carpathians, who used the assumed name Dr. V. Maksymovych. Brief information is also provided about another physician of the UPA officers' school, Dr. "Kum"; we include a memoir about him which was written by B. Podoliak.

Additionally there are printed copies of the interrogation by the NKVD and the transcript of the court martial of Dr. Varm Shaja Davydovych. He was a physician from Warsaw who escaped the ghetto and joined the medical corps of the UPA in Volyn. [13]

The last chapter consists of UPA Medical Service and UChKh archival documents. The physicians and medical staff worked in conditions that made record keeping extremely difficult; thus these records were limited to the most essential. Records documenting their activity were stored in secret, but the possibility of preserving them was minimal Of the UPA documents which made their way to the West, very few relate to medical work "The History of illness", "Daily Chronicle", and the monthly reports written by hand by Dr. Yavorskyi ("Yakym") provide a picture of the work of an UPA doctor in the Lemko region.

"Instructions for Platoon Medical Assistants" and the enclosed report form, which was designed by medical assistant "Monomakh " in the Yaroslav-Liubachiv area in 1946, give an idea of the tasks carried out by medical assistants in UPA units.

The reports by megadistrict and district UChKh directors and a company medical assistant from the Kholm-Pidliashshia area in 1946-47 and copies of receipts for incoming and outgoing medications show how closely medical work in the UPA was organized and controlled.

The last document is a copy of the Judgement of the military tribunal of the Krakow district, which in a session held in Sianok on May 16, 1947, passed a death sentence on Rozalia Minko. This 23-year-old village girl, who had four years of education, was sentenced to death for having links with UPA and gathering herbs from which medications were to be made for treating sick and wounded UPA soldiers.


I would like to thank all those who helped prepare this volume for publication. Special thanks go to Editor in Chief Yevhen Shtendera and to Prof Petro Potichnyj for their editorial assistance and to my wife Marijka for her help at every stage of this project.

I'm grateful to Dr. Bohdan Kruk and Dr. Arethy Kravets for their help in providing documents, Mykola Kulyk for technical assistance, Anton Ivachniuk for linguistic editing, Volodymyr Makar for proofreading, Zonia Keyvan for her translation and to Stepan Shpak for the preparation of the index.

Modest Ripeckyj

[1] UHR -- The Army of Ukrainian National Republic.
[2] UHA -- The Ukrainian Galician Army.
[3] UPA-East was only in the stage of formation.
[4] Ereignismeldung UdSSR Nr. 142. 5.XII. 41 II) Meldungen der Einsatzgruppen und-kommandos. Einsatzgruppe C. Stadort: Kiew. Stimmung der ukrainischen Bevolkerung in der Stadt Kiew. UPA in the Light of German Documents, Book 3, Toronto: Litopys UPA, 1991, Litopys UPA, Vol. 21, p. 101.
[5] Dr. Toma Worobec, "The Ukrainian Red Cross (UChKh)".
[6] Liudmyla Ivchenko, "The Ukrainian Red Cross in Kiev in 1941-42".
[7] Ereignismeldung UdSSr No 191 10. IV. 1942. Meldungen der Einsatzgruppen u. Kommandos. Einsatzgruppe C. Standort: Kiew. Lage und Stimmung in der Ukraine. Lage und Stimming in der West-Ukraine. UPA in the Light of German Documennts, Book 3, Toronto, Litopys UPA, 1991 Litopys UPA, vol. 21, pp. 121-126.
[8] Iryna Savytska-Kozak "Kateryna Zarytska and the Underground Ukrainian Red Cross".
[9] Dr. Ya. Wojewidka, "Our Losses: Dr. Volodymyr Wreciona", Likarskyi Visnyk, Chicago: ULTPA, 1970, No. 1, pp. 51-52.
[10] Both of the above-mentioned articles were published in the book Contributions to the History of Ukrainian Medicine, Chicago: Ukrainian Medical Association, 1988, Vol. II, pp. 132-151, 117-125.
[11] Jewish physicians about whom personal information could not be found included the following: "Chornyi", from Rivne in Volyn, a physician in the battaliion commanded by "Ostryi" in the Kostopil area. See Capt. V. Hrabenko, "In the Ranks of the UPA in the Kostopil Area", Voyn and Polissia, Book 3, Toronto: Litopys UPA, 1984, Litopys UPA, Vol. 5, pp. 77, 87; Dr. Gryfel from Lutsk, physician of the UPA non-commissioned officers' school in "Sich". See: S. Novytskyi, "In Struggle for the Freedom of Volyn", Volyn and Polissia, Book 5, op. cit., p. 176. Berenzon, from Matiyevo, Kovel county, Volyn; UPA nurse in the Matiyevo district. See Mykhailo Lebid, "The Period of the German Occupation in the Matiyevo District in Volyn", Volyn and Polissia, op. cit., p. 207. "Bilyi", UPA physician in the northen military territory of the "Turiv", Volyn Oblast. V. Novak ("Krylatyi"), North-western Military Region Turiv", Volyn and Polissia, Book 5, op. cit., pp. 125-127. Jewish UPA doctors who names and pseudonyms are not known: See M. Skorupskyi ("Max"), U Nastupakh i Vidstupakh, Ukrayinsko-Amerykanska Vyd. Spilka, 1961, pp. 131-32; Dr. Mykhailo Danyliuk, Posvstankyi Zapysnyk, New York: Svoboda, 1968; Danylo Schumuk, Perezhyte i Peredumane, Detroit: Ukrayinski Visti, 1983, pp. 144-146.
[12] Polish physicians who treated UPA soldiers: Dr. Tadeusz Krwawicz, eye specialist and Director of the Eye Clinic of the Lublin Medical Academy, 1945-1948, and in 1950, Professor of the Gdansk Medical Academy. See Hanna Martyniuk (""Hania"), "Memoirs of a Ukrainian Red Cross Medical Assistants", p. 227. Dr. Halina Jakubjuk, physician from Tomaszow Lubelski. See Anna Bailak ("Roma"): "Physician Halina Jakubjuk", p. 306.
[13] The interrogation was conducted by the chief of the NKVD in Kovel. Dr. V. Sh. Davydovych was found guilty and sentenced by the court martial in Luck on September 16, 1944 to 20 years of imprisonment.


Page 51. Liudmyla Ivchenko. THE UKRAINIAN RED CROSS IN KIEV, 1941-1942

In the introductory to her article, the author speaks in general about the work of the Ukrainian Red Cross in Kiev in 1941-42. She links the activity of the UChKh to the traditions of the Ukrainian state of 1918-1921. Then she provides a more detailed description of the situation in Kiev in September, 1941 when the Soviets retreated and the German army occupied the city. Kiev was in a state of wartime chaos: there were fires, mine explosions, lack of food, water, light and public communications. Through the streets, the Germans drove masses of prisoners of war and frightened women searched among them for their husbands, brothers and sons. The city did not yet have any functioning city government or local police.

In this situation of chaos and personal danger, the Ukrainian Red Cross (UChKh) began to operate in Kiev. Liudmyla Ivchenko managed to find a place to live in a half-empty building where her friend lived. In a neighboring building, No. 40 Pushkin Street, Liudmyla met Prof. Fedor Bohatyrchuk. He introduced himself as the head of the UChKh. Around him had gathered a group of people who had decided to start the UChKh in order to provide help to the needy and defend people against the chaos of war.

Several dedicated women, as well as the author, joined in the work of the UChKh. Lesia Rybachuk took charge of the social service, Olena Chekhivska headed the section of assistance to the repressed, and Liudmyla Ivchenko, the author of the memoir, took over the section of care for prisoners of war. Volunteering to help Liudmyla were several young women whose husbands were still in the Red Army. Dmytro Lepkyi became the deputy dead of the UChKh.

The task of the section of assistance to the repressed was to help former political prisoners, those who had been deported and their families.

The medical section of the UChKh in Kiev acted independently and was headed by Dr. Skaletskyi.

Liudmyla Ivchenko, head of the section of care for prisoners of war, provides detailed information about work in this area. Making use of the name Red Cross, the workers made every possible effort to help Red Army prisoners of war. They did their work in very difficult and complex conditions. Among the obstacles to their charitable efforts were the brutal behavior of the Germans towards the Ukrainian population of Kiev, the lack of drugs and the great difficulty in finding food supplies. When the civilian German Nazi administration appeared in Kiev, the UChKh had to work even harder. After the Germans banned the use of the name Ukrainian Red Cross, they continued their work under the banner of the Ukrainian Assistance Committee - "Ukrainsche Hilfswerke".

Shortly after the Germans seized Nolyn, a UChKh branch was also established in Rivne, headed by a physician, Dr. M. Kormyliv. In November, 1941, representatives of the Riven UChKh, Dr. Kharytia Kononenko and Dr. A. Burko, came to Kiev. They established close cooperation with the Kiev UChKh directors.

In order to obtain at least some help for Red Army prisoners of war, the UChKh head, Prof. F. Bohatyrchuk, Liudmyla Ivchenko and Dr. Kharytia Kononenko went to the German military command in Rivne. Particularly helpful in the discussion there, as well as later with the General Government in Lublin and Krakow, was Kharytia Kononenko. who spoke perfect German. In spite of all their efforts the UChKh representatives did not achieve any positive results.

Liudmyla Ivchenko also made fruitless efforts to obtain the liberation of Ukrainian Red Army prisoners of war, While in Krakow, she learned of the arrests by the Gestapo of the UChKh directors in Kiev, including Prof. Bohatyrchuk, in February, 1942. The author, along with Kharytia Kononenko, tried to continue the work on behalf of Red Army prisoners of war in cooperation with the UTsK (Ukrainian Central Committee) in Krakow and in Lviv. However, it became evident that it was hopeless to try to do anything in the regard. Returning to Kiev, Liudmyla Ivchenko could not continue to work on behalf of the prisoners of war, because all the documents related to this matter were taken away by the Gestapo. Thus, in 1942, the work of the Ukrainian Red Cross in Kiev came to an end.

Page 62. Dr. Toma Worobec. THE UKRAINIAN RED CROSS (UCHKH)

In the introduction to his sketch, the author briefly presents the history of the Ukrainian Red Cross in Ukraine. The UChKh was organized by the Ukrainian government in April, 1918 and acted in accord with the resolutions of the 1864 Geneva Convention, which was ratified by all the states participating in the Gaza Peace Conference of 1907.

After the loss of Ukrainian independence in 1921, the UChKh no longer had the rights of membership in the International Red Cross. However, it continued its charitable activities under other names, adhering to the principles of international resolutions. From the time of the loss of Ukrainian independence up the Second World War, Ukrainian charitable organizations (acting in the place of the UChKh) helped the victims of armed struggles, prisoners of war, invalids and other who were victimized by the war. In later years, they also cared for political prisoner, widows and orphans.

In 1941, right after the German occupation of Lviv, the work of the UChKh was revived on the initiative of Ukrainian doctors. The facilities for starting up its work of charitable and medical assistance were obtained by taking over the facilities of a former sanatorium of the Soviet Red Cross. Thanks to the efforts of the author, they managed to conceal form the Germans the medical equipment of the Soviet provincial health Department and some other medical institutions. These supplies were stored at the Lviv tuberculosis clinic and later they were used to meet the most urgent needs of the city and vicinity. When the armed anti-German underground began to operate, the UPA also benefited from these medical goods.

The first head of the UChKh in Lviv was Dr. L. Kurchaba. In early August, 1941 he was arrested by the Germans and deported to Krakow, where he died in the infamous prison on Monteliupich. He was replaced as UChKh head by Dr. Halyna Bilenka-Vretsiona. When she became ill with typhus, her duties were taken over by Dr. Toma Worobec, the author of the sketch.

In March, 1942, the Gestapo banned the activity of the UChKh. Its work of charitable assistance and medical care was carried on by the Social Service section of the Ukrainian Regional (later Central) Committee. Thus, under this guise, the UChKh continued to operate.

From the first days of the German occupation of Ukrainian territories, the numbers of victims of German terror increased. Help by the UChKh to Ukrainian political prisoners had to be limited to providing them with food and clothing before their transfer to concentration camps. There was no possibility of providing legal defense or organizing any systematic help for the imprisoned.

The UChKh provided the service of physicians and hospitals and gave charitable assistance to thousands of victims of the war and political terror and to those involved in the liberation struggle. One very difficult problem was providing help to Red Army prisoners of war, millions of whom were held by the Germans behind barbed wire in various camps. The prisoners were ding in massive hunger under the open sky from hunger, cold and infectious diseases. When active resistance to German terror was organized, the UChKh helped the UPA in treating wounded and sick solders. Many medications and medical supplies which the author had hidden at the tuberculosis clinic in Lviv, of which he was the director, were passed on the UPA.

The UChKh headquarters in Lviv particularly helped Ukrainian scholars in Kiev, where famine reigned at that time.

As UChKh head, the author was in constant contact with representatives of Jewish doctors in the Lviv ghetto, helping the victims of Hitler's madness with medicines and essential supplies. Many Jewish doctors were saved from physical destruction and entered the UChKh in the UPA.

It was impossible to operate openly the name UChKh on Ukrainian territories occupied by the Germans. The German occupational regime eradicated the whole network of UChKh branches through prohibition, threats, arrests and even executions. Among those executed were the well-known UChKh activists, Dr. Kharytia Kononenko and Dr. Rudobakhta. The UChKh continues to work under the name UChkh only in the UPA.

Page 73. Iryna Savytska-Kozak. THE UCHKH IN HALYCHYNA

The author of this memoir worked with Kateryna Zarytska in 1943, when the underground Ukrainian Red Cross began to be organized. The organizational work was carried out by the underground network of OUN women. Kateryna Zarytska became the head of the UChKh. She filled the positions of the territorial UChkh leadership, which built up its network in provinces, regions and districts. The UChKh had three sections: medical, pharmacy and social service. Training of the medical and pharmacy personnel was done by professionals. Heading the medical unit was a physician and the pharmacy unit was headed by the pharmacist Nuna Petrushevych ("Dukh").

The territorial UChKh leadership held periodic meetings, at which all the most important matters were discussed and resolved. Use was made of the broad experience acquired by the medical system in Volyn, where the UPA's armed struggle began earlier than in Halychyna. Larger UPA units began to operate in Halychyna only in the summer of 1943. At that time, the Red Cross began to establish medical stations in villages, and small hospitals in districts and provinces. The UChKh also helped to organize a medical service with the battle units. The UPA medical service provided a doctor or a trained medical assistant to every unit (battalion, company, platoon).

During the German occupation, hospitals were located in houses in "safe" villages, into which Germans did not go. Under Soviet occupation, the hospitals were located only in underground hide-outs. Even during the German occupation, the UChKh prepared for the provision of such underground medical care behind the Soviet front lines.

During the Soviet occupation, contacts were made not in city or village homes but through letter drops in appointed places.

The author describes one incident when the Soviets were carrying out raids in an area near a UChKh letter drop point. The Soviets captures everyone they found in the area, including Kateryna Zarytska. However, the NKVD men did not suspect that among the peasant women they had caught was the head of the underground UChKh. they severely beat all the women, and left Kateryna Z. beaten to the point of unconsciousness in a village house. After she regained consciousness, she escaped and his out in the neighboring village. The after-effects of the beating had to be treated for quite a long time. Although Kateryna did not have the strength to move around, she continued to direct UChKh activity through instructions and orders.

In 1945, the Soviets intensified their raids through all of Western Ukraine. It became very difficult of UChKh network to continue their work and maintain their contacts and there were often serious personnel losses. The author describes one of the raids, which she witnessed with Kateryna Zarytska. In March, 1945, as she was returning from training, she stopped with Halyna Didyk ("Anna") and "Roksoliana" in the village of Koniukhy, in Berezhany county. The Soviets, who were carrying out raids, had left the village, and local contacts informed the women that they could safely stay in the village. but, unexpectedly, the Soviets again surrounded Koniukhy and a large group of neighboring villages. The four underground workers had to stay in the village, disguised as lical peasants, a full two weeks. The Soviets mercilessly terrorized the inhabitants of the village. Through beatings and all kinds of provacations, they tried to get information about UPA activity. Kateryna Zrytska, Halyna Didik, "Roksoliana" and the author were also severely beaten. But in spite of the violence and torture, the Soviets did not get any information about the UPA, and nobody in the village betrayed the members of the underground UChKh.

One of the tasks of the Red Cross was the training of UPA medical personnel. Students in the advanced stages of medical studies were trained to do essential surgical interventions. This surgical training was given in the hamlet of Poruchyn, in Berezhany county. Twelve medical students attended the courses, which were given by the chief physician, "Sofron", who was from the Sokal region, and Dr. Ia. Olesnytskyi ("Iaryi"), who was later killed in the UPA. At the end of the training period, Kateryna Zarytska, director of the UChKh, and the author of the memoir came to Poruchyn. They directed the graduates of the surgical courses to various UPA hospitals.

In spite of the difficult living conditions, the insurgents were able to find moments for diversion. Kateryna Zarytska loved to sing sentimental and love songs. She was always full of optimism and joy of life, had a good sense of humor and was pleasant to work with. Her husband had been deported and her son lived with Kathryn's parents in Lviv.


The author, Col. M. Omeliusik, in the article "The UPA in Volyn in 1943", (Litopys UPA, Vol. 1, in the section "Medical Service") briefly informs us about the UPA's medical service.

Because hospitals and major medical facilities were located in the cities, where German military and police detachments were stationed, the UPa was unable to make use of them. Another problem in organizing a medical system for the UPa was the shortage of Ukrainian physicians and other medical personnel.

A Certain number of Jewish doctors were able to be saved form the ghettoes, and they later played an important role in assisting the UPA medical service. In districts where there were no doctors, the duties were carried out by experienced nurses or medical assistants. Nursing courses were hurriedly organized and small hospitals were established in places inaccessible to the enemy. Because of the danger of attach by the enemy, field hospitals often had to be move.

The chief physician of the UPA medical units was Dr. "Enei" (his name in not known). As UPA doctors worked in places where there were no local doctors, they also provided medical care to the civilian population. In cases of need, the local population cared for sick and wounded UPA soldiers.

The medical care provided to the insurgents suffered from the lack of medications, for they were in short supply in the pharmacies of Volyn cities. Existing supplies were used up during the Soviet and German occupations. The critical shortage of drugs was partly countered by acquisitions of supplies from Halychyna and the General Government. Although there, too, drugs were often in short supply, they were more plentiful than in Volyn. The UPA medical service also had problems getting other medical supplies.

In these very difficult conditions the UPA medical personnel carried out their duties with superhuman dedication.

* * *

The exerpts repainted form the article by V. Ninovskyi, "Hrabenko", "In the Ranks of the UPA in the Kostopil Region" (Litopys UPA, Vol. 5), provide much information about medical matters. At the time when the author was an instructor at the UPA's school for non-commissioned officers. "Druzhynnyky", in Volyn, the medical director of the hospital was the physician and surgeon "Enei", who was form Volyn, while the hospital administrator and director of the nursing course was "Uliana". The author gives some information about this medical center.

When he describes his activity as company commander in the battalion commanded by "Ostryi", the author also writes about the medical personnel. The battalion doctor was "Chornyi" (his real name is not known), who was Jewish and came form Rivne. At first, he stayed with the battalion full-time them, as the number of wounded grew, he moved around to different medical stations. There was a lack of doctors in the county and so he also provided medical care to the local peasants. He was helped by a medical assistant, "Kamun".

In another part of the memoir, the author describes his own experiences as a wounded insurgent. At the end of November, 1943 he was wounded in the chest and the arm and was taken to a medical station at a farmstead. Housed there were other wounded and sick soldiers under the care of two women medical assistants. Every few days, they were visited by the battalion doctor, "Chornyi". He was very humane and tried not only to treat the wounded men, but to give them moral support. The Soviet-German front was approaching the area north of Sarny, where UPA units were operating. The Ukrainian Red Cross (UChKh) temporarily housed the wounded men in dwellings which were equipped with hiding places. The author was first taken to the Kolky district, but because there was no doctor there, he was moved progressively further west, closer to Kovel. Because of the lack of medical care, his wounds became seriously infected. A German military party came to the house where he lay sick with a high fever. The sick man passed himself off a a local employee of the German administration, wounded by Soviet partisans, and as such the Germans transported him to a hospital in Kovel.

* * *

In an article entitles "The North-Western Region "Turiv" "(Litopys UPA, Vol. 5), the author, V. Novak, "Krylatyi", gives some information about the UChKh in the Kolky district and in the Svynarskyi forest in the so-called "Sich". The town of Kolky was at quite a distance form German military centers and became a center of the insurgent movement. Located there was the UPA school for non-commissioned officers and training courses of UChKh nurses.

The second important UPA base in this military region was "Sich", located in the forests south-east of Volodymyr Volynskyi. The commander of "Sich" was Porfir Antoniuk ("Sosenko"). Locate there was an UPA field hospital operated by the UChKh.

In the northern part of the "Turiv" region were three larger field hospitals in which worked Ukrainian and Jewish doctors. On of the better doctors, whom the author knew, was Dr. "Bilyi", who was Jewish, as was his wife. The author was treated at a farmstead near the village of Klevan by a Ukrainian medical assistant who had taken part in the liberation struggle at the time of the First World War in the ranks of the UNR army.

In the fall of 1943, the author was ordered was ordered by the "Turiv" Military Region commander to build a camp for a field hospital in the large forest south of Kamin-Koshyrskyi. The chosen site for the hospital was inaccessible, surrounded by swamps. The location of the field hospital was kept secret and all the principles of secrecy were applied. The hospital was built by a platoon from another territory. When it was ready, Dr. "Bilyi" and his wife were moved there from the Kolky district. The administrator of the hospital was Captain "Vashchenko", a former officer of the UNR army.

* * *

In the memoir "In Advances and Retreats", battalion commander Maksym Skorupskyi ("Max") provides some information about the activity of the medical service in Kremianets county. The author describes how some Jewish doctors, spirited out of the ghetto, were brought from Lviv to the village of Antonivka. Some of them were with their wives. The village of Antinivka was a Ukrainian underground administration center and almost all functionaries form Kranianets county came there. Supply centers for UPa units were established in the surrounding villages. The UChKh was also established in Antonivka by the women.

* * *

In the excerpt reprinted from the book "Perezhyte i peredumane", the author, Danylo Shumuk, describes his visit to the small UPa hospital at "Sich", in the Svynarskyi forest of Volodymyr Volynskyi county. The chief physician of the hospital was a young, talented surgeon of the Odessa medical institute. Also working in the hospital were three Jewish doctors. The chief physician was a handsome man of medium height, who was well-educated, gentlemanly and self-assured. In the hospital were 73 soldiers who had been wounded in action against Germans and 37 who were sick with various illnesses. all the patients praised their doctors and behaved courageously.

* * *

In an article published in Likarskyi Visnyk, No. 4 (71) 1973, Dr. M. Danyliuk provided detailed information about the physicians Hanna and Petro Roshchynskyi. This article is reprinted in a full in Litopys UPA.

Dr. Hanna Roshchynska-Strutynska came form Kremianets in Volyn. She completed her medical studies in Petersburg and during the 1917 Revolution returned to Ukraine. When the Ukrainian Army was being formed, she helped in the establishment of a medical service and worked in military hospitals. Dr. Petro Roshchynskyi, who was from Chernihiv province, was a military doctor in the UNR army. They were married in Rivne and after the war opened a private practice in Kostopil. They lived there from 1927 to 1938, them moved to Kremianets. In 1939-41, during the Soviet occupation of Volyn, Dr. Hanna Roshchynska stayed in Kremianets, while her husband escaped to the General Government. In 1941, Dr. Petro Roshchynskyi returned to Kermianets, where they both worked in the local hospital.

Drs. Hanna and Petro Roshchynskyi were always active in Ukrainian community life. During the German occupation, form late 1942, they were in contact with the Ukrainian underground. They provided instruction and literature, and organized medical care in insurgent battle conditions. They often passed on drugs and medical supplies and secretly treated sick and wounded insurgents.

The winter of 1942-42 was a time of great tension in Volyn. The UPA began to operate. The German occupational administration waged terror, executing prominent citizens and decimating villages. Through this terror and executions, the Germans planned to break the national resistance movement.

On February 23, 1943, the Gestapo arrested some members of the intelligentsia in Kremianets, among them , Dr. Hanna and Dr. Petro Roshchynskyi. The newly-organized UPA units were informed of this and prepared to attack the prison at night to free the prisoners. However, the Gestapo executed most of the prisoners that same day, shooting them beside the walls of the prison. Among the executed were Dr. Hanna, and Dr. Petro Roshchynskyi. The Germans speeded up the executions out of fear of repetition of incidents that had taken place a few month earlier in Dubno and Kremianets, where prisons had been attacked and hundreds of prisoner freed.

* * *

In the article "Ukrainian Women in German Prisons In Kremianets and Rivne" (Litopys UPA, Vol. 5), Stefanie Stepaniak devotes a separate chapter to Dr. Kharytia Kononenko. The author met Kharytia Kononenko in the German prison in Rivne in 1943. Kharytia Kononenko was born in 1900 in the village of Mykolayivka in Poltava province. In 1920, she went to Podjebrady in Czechoslovakia, where she completed university with a doctorate in economics. In 1924, she went to Saskatoon, Canada where she was active in Ukrainian community life. In 1928, she returned to Czechoslovakia, and in 1930, moved to Halychyna. After the outbreak of the German-Soviet war in 1941, she moved to Rivne in Volyn. All during her life she worked in various Ukrainian community institutions and wrote for newspapers and magazines, where she published articles on topics related to women and charitable work.

In Rivne, Kharytia Kononenko worked very energetically in the social service section of the Ukrainian Red Cross. The social service was headed by Col. Leonid Stupnytskyi, later Chief-of-Staff of the UPA Supreme Command in Volyn. In 1941-42, the primary task of the UChKh was to help Red Army prisoners of war, who had ended up en masse in German camps. The prisoners of was were dying of from hunger, cold and infectious diseases.

In 1943, Col. L. Stupnytskyi joined the Ukrainian Insurgent Army. Kharytia Kononenko maintained contact with him and organized medical personnel and medications for the UPA. On July 16, 1943, the Gestapo arrested Kharytia and held her in the prison in Rivne. the Germans often used her as a translator, to explain to the prisoners various orders given in the German language, which she knew very well. In the Gestapo's interrogations of prisoner, the primary accusation was having links with the Ukrainian Insurgent Army. Incidents of torture in the prison dungeon during interrogations were exceptionally brutal. The Germans transferred some of the Ukrainian prisoners to the concentration camp in Auschwitz, and many others were executed in Volyn. Kharytia Kononenko was executed on October 15, 1943. This was the day of the largest number of executions of political prisoners in the Rivne prison.


The main part of the author's sketch consists of a description of the medical service of the UPA battalion commanded by Vasyl Mizernyi ("Ren"). The author was the doctor of this battalion, which at first had more than 700 soldiers, and at the time of the passage of the front, about 2,000 soldiers. Although at that time the author had still not completed his medical studies, he had to assumes the duties of a doctor, for there was a lack of qualified physicians.

The battalion commanded by V. Mizernyi ("Ren") was organized in the summer of 1944 in the Carpathians, in the eastern Lemko region and western Boiko region. It was made up of four companies and one light artillery platoon. The responsibilities of director of the battalion medical service were assumed by Modest Ripeckyi ("Horyslav"), who at that time had completed seven semesters of studies at the medical Institute in Lviv. He assumed this responsibility because no graduate doctor was available.

One of the first tasks was to obtain medications, surgical instruments, bandages and other medical supplies for the newly-formed companies. It proved possible to get medical supplies thanks to the efforts of the local population, which included many people with initiative.

In the Lemko region, the members of the underground network were not able to carry out he task of gathering medical supplies because several months before the arrival of the Soviets, the Gestapo had arrested and imprisoned or executed the active members of the underground. The underground activists who came to the territory to revive the organizational network had not yet been able to fully develop their activity. During the German occupation, the Ukrainian underground leadership had appealed to the population to find medical equipment and supplies for the UPA. Inventories of drugs and other medical supplies were built up with the help of links with pharmacies, hospitals and individual doctors.

During the period of the military training of Mizernyi's battalion, medical supplies were relatively plentiful. Available drugs were categorized according to their use. Every solder at the training camp was supplied with a first aid package. About 50 percent of the soldiers got original military packages, and others got first aid packages made for peasant cloth, which were prepared by UChKh workers in surrounding villages.

An important task of the doctors of the UPA Medical Service was to carry out physical examinations of all soldiers. The battalion medical service director was not able to get processional instructions from his superiors, so he had to make any decisions himself. Among other things, he prepared a short rule book which laid out the basic health requirements for participants in the newly-organized companies. This rule book was authorized by the battalion commander, V. Mizernyi. A provisional "shepherd's hut" was erected in the middle of the camp, which served as a field clinic and place for conducting medical examinations of he soldiers. Most of this medical hut was occupied by medical equipment. another part held the pharmacy section. All the equipment in the hut, including the examination table, had been made in the field from available material.

In a later chapters of the sketch, the author describes how Mizernyi's battalion broke behind the Soviet lines, their raid eastward towards Stanyslaviv (Ivano-Frankivske) and onto the Lemko region as they returned. The medical service was obliged not only to care for the sick and wounded, but also to transport drugs and other medical supplies. On the way back westward, two companies form the battalion were surrounded by NKVD troops. Thanks to their partisan tactics, the companies succeeded in breaking through the encirclment, but the enemy captured all the medical supplies. The doctors and medical assistants were left only with what they carried in their bags.

The author also briefly describes the problems of hygiene, disease prevention and food, both during the training period in the Bukove Berdo forest and later, during the raid.

Described in more detail are the methods of treatment and care provided to the sick and wounded during billeting, marches and battles. One of the more serious problems was outbreak of a epidemic typhus in the company commanded by D. Svistel ("Vseslyi") during the spring of 1945 (this is described in detail). Other illnesses which the author often had to treat included various types of gastroenteritis, vitamin deficiency, scabies, pediculosis, impetigo and ecthyma. When drugs were lacking, home remedies had to be applied. For example, a primitive form of immunotherapy which consisted of infecting the patient with sterilized milk or his own blood was used.

In a separate section, the author describes how the battalion medical service acquired experience in caring for the wounded. Giving examples of several skirmishes, he shows how not only the medical personnel, but also he command staff of the companies tried to deal with these difficult problems. Descriptions are given of the following skirmishes: (1) incident in Lavichne - firing at the raiding UPA battalion by Hungarian artillery; (2) night attack by the battalion on an NKVD center and military points in Perehinske (Ivano-Frankoske province) 17-18.X.1944; (3) battle with border guards and other special NKVD detachments in Stroronna (Sambir area) 17-17.X.1944; (4) skirmish in Strubovyska of the UPA company commanded by D. Svistel ("Veselyi") against special NKVD detachments of the so-called "Red Broom", commanded by Col. Stepashkin.

Conditions for providing medical assistance to wounded UPA soldiers were very unfavorable. Only the most lightly wounded could be cures. Those who were critically or very seriously wounded could not by saved in the existing conditions. Seriously wounded soldiers who were conscious often took their own lives. They did not want to fall into the hands of the enemy and die under torture.

The doctors lived through situations that were full of danger and fear, moments of nervous tension and extreme anxiety. Extremely troubling for a doctor, with all his theoretical and practical knowledge, was to stand over a wounded man totally helpless, simply because the conditions he was working in made it impossible to give the necessary medical help.

The UPA doctor dealt in various ways with the shortage of drugs, equipment and proper facilities and he gave of himself as much as he could. Still he could not overcome the critical situations imposed by the enemy.


The author begins his article with general information about the structure of the UPA and the work of the UChKh on the territory of the UPA's "Lemko Military District", which encompassed the Peremyshl region and the Lemko region.

UChKh workers had to operate in the most unfavorable circumstances. The wounded and sick had to be treated in underground hide-outs, medical stations and small underground hospitals. The work of UChKh personnel was generally limited to providing medical care to the wounded in hide-outs and night visits to convalescents in villages and farmsteads, as well as providing medical care to the general population. The UPA medical personnel worked under constant nervous strain. In 1946-47, the enemy intensified its attack against the UPA. Whole divisions of the VP (Polish Army) blockaded the territory of the UPA's "Lemko" Military District. Dozens of medical hiding places were discovered by the enemy and many UChKh workers were killed.

On January 21, 1947, all the patients of the underground hospital in the forest near Khershchata, in the Lemko region, and all the medical personnel, including physician "Rat", pharmacist "Orest" and medical assistant "Arpad", were killed.

On Good Friday, April 11, 1947, all the medical workers and the wounded in the medical hide-out near the village of Berendiovychi (Peremyshl area) were killed. Among them were Master of Pharmacy Yaroslav Solhan ("Nekhryst"), pharmacy student Olekasandra Haidukevych ("Zena", "Bohdanna"), and medical assistant "Kit". In both cases, the medical personnel and the patients defended themselves as long as they were able, and when they could not continue, took their own lives.

At that time, the lost UChKh personnel could not be replaced. The duties of those who were killed were taken over by less-qualified medical students or medical assistants with less training. But there were no cases among the UChKh medical staff of moral collapse or going over to the side of the enemy. Their steadfastness can be attributed to the ideological foundation of the liberation struggle, the closeness of insurgent society and popular support.

Later in this sketch, the author provides a brief history of the organization of the UChKh and its work on the territory of the UPA's "Lemko" Military District. The first cells of the UChKh, or as it was called in the region, the Health Service, were organized in 1944 by Dr. "Yurko", veterinary graduate "Shuvar", and medical student "Melodiya". The UChKh staff was composed of medical students and a few doctors.

During the period when much of the territory of the Peremyshl and Lemko regions were controlled by UPA units, Dr. "Yurko" and "Shuvar" saw to the organization of the UChKh network and training of medical cadres. The UChKh divided its activity into two branches: military and field work. The military medical courses were attended by members of UPA units, SB battle groups and self-defense units (SKV) of the revolutionary underground. Courses for field medical assistants were attended mainly by women. Their task was to organize care for the sick and wounded in village medical stations. The courses lasted from two to three weeks, with full days of lectures and practical exercises. The textbook used was the Medical Compendium compiled by Dr. "Yurko" and "Shuvar". As part of the training of field medical assistants, a pharmacist also gave a course on curative herbs.

Every SKV had at least one medical hide-out. In every district there was, in addition to medical hide-outs (station), one larger hide-out, a small underground field hospital. Doctors and medical students put great effort into the organization of the UChKh network. the UChKh had a precise reporting system, which gave an overview of the personnel, supplies of drug and food and the activities of the staff. Reporting was done according to the established form every month.

The UPA's "Lemko" Military District command helped the UChKh network in its task of bringing care to the sick and wounded. As an example, the author mentions the operation carried out by the UPA battalion commanded by Petro Mykolenko ("Baida") during the night of November 17, 1946, on the town of Dyniv, in Bereziv county, in order to get drugs from the state pharmacy.

The author provides information about almost all of the doctors and medical assistants and their positions in the UPa medical service and UChKh network on the territory of the UPA's "Lemko" Military District. According to the order of the General Military headquarters, UPA doctors and medical assistants were obliged to provide medical assistance to wounded enemy soldiers and information about the place and circumstances of their deaths to the soldiers' families.


The author begins his article with general information about the Ukrainian Red Cross, its organization and its activities. One of the important tasks of the UChKh was to train medical personnel. Generally, separate medical courses were given for women working in the UChKh field network and UPA military medical assistants. The courses made use of the Medical Compendium compiled by Dr. Yurko Davydenko ("Yurko") and "Shuvar". Medical care was provided by physicians who volunteered for the UPA, and later, when their ranks thinned out, by medical assistants. During the summer of 1944, the UPA medical service had to change its methods of operation. Conditions of the UChKh's activities were much more difficult than under the Germans. The enemy terrorized the population and horribly tortured captured and wounded UPA soldiers and medical personnel. The NKVD units frequently carried out raids throughout villages and forests. Enemy medical units did not provide medical help to wounded UPA soldiers while the UChKh, in accord with UPA command orders, gave first aid to wounded enemy soldiers. In the territory beyond the Curzon Live, the UPA and its medical service suffered the greatest losses in 1947. In 1944-47, before the total deportation of the population, the UChKh operated in planned manner and had a precise reporting system. Every doctor or medical assistant prepared a monthly report about UChKh activity in the field, and the workers of the medical service wrote reports about their work in the units. To his article, the author appends a UChKh district officer report from, which includes 19 separate points. He also provides a copy of instructions on how to keep the UChKh district administrative books. In addition to these books, the medical orderly at the district UChKh center was obliged to keep a record of important events. The medical stations (hospitals) coordinated their efforts to get food supplies with the economic section of the underground network. Efforts were made to ensure medical hide-outs with food supplies for five of six months in case of intensified raids and blockades of villages by the enemy. The author also describes the work of doctors (or medical assistants) in UPA units: platoons, companies and battalions. Heading the pharmacy section of the UChKh in the Lemko region was the pharmacist "Orest". In 1943-44, drugs and surgical instruments were bought with contributions made to the "UChKh Fund". The UPA units also obtained some medications in their operations against enemy targets. Drugs acquired in various ways were brought to an designated point where the pharmacist responsible for several districts distributed them to medical stations - hospitals and UPA units. Any remaining supplies were stored. The UChKh also organized the collection of medicinal herbs, which were used for treatment of various illnesses. The state of health of UPA solders in the area where the author worked was generally good. Only in the mountains did some of the soldiers suffered heart and lung ailments. Typhoid fever, dysentery and veneral diseases were also common. The enemy contributed to spreading these diseases. In a separate section of his report, the author gives statistical data of various types of wounds of UPA soldiers and compares them to wound statistics of regular armies. The author finishes his article with information about methods of treatment of the wounded and describes the operational settings of the insurgents' secret hospitals. In order to illustrate one of the treatment methods used in insurgent conditions, the author appends the first section of a compendium by B. Kruk ("Melodiya") - Herbs and Their Use. This work discusses when and how to gather, dry and store curative plants. Later it indicates how to prepare these plants for use in treatment.

Page 203. Dr. Vasyl Hranas-Onyskiv. COURSES NEAR TRUKHANIV

In this memoir, the author describes how he helped give underground courses to Ukrainian Red Cross nurses during the winter of 1944-45, while he was still a student of the Medical Institute in Lviv. The training was given in the Carpathian Mountains near Skole. The courses were organized by a woman whose code name was "Tsiotka". Directing the training was Dr. "Yurko", a surgeon, who was from the Poltava region.

The courses were given in a dug-out which served as living quarters and the places of instruction for 15 students and their two instructors. The conditions of training were extremely unfavorable, but thanks to the seriousness and diligence of the students , the courses proceeded successfully. The author taught the fundamentals of anatomy, physiology and treatment of wounds. Other subjects were taught by the director, Dr. "Yurko". At the end of the course, Dr. "Yurko" gave exams using the method used in Soviet schools, with each student selecting a sheet of questions which she had to answer.

According to the author, Dr. "Yurko" was caught in an ambush in the summer of 1945. Surrounded by the enemy, he shot himself with his Nagan revolver.


During the German occupation, the author of this memoir was a physician in Kalush county. He gives an eyewitness description of Gestapo brutality in the Stanyslaviv region. The arrests and destruction of Ukrainians began when the Germans arrived in 1941, but the terror reached its peak in 1943-44, after the Germans' defeat in the east. In order to control the population more closely, the Stanuslaviv Gestapo moves part of its detachment to Kalush. In the Kalush area, the Gestapo acted with exceptional brutality.

"In May, 1941, a Gestapo expeditionary force attacked the village of Zavadka, in Kalush county. The village was burned and 35 people, including medical school graduate P. Lesyk, were brought to Kalush and held in the Gestapo dungeon, surrounded by barbed wire. The victims were stripped naked and tied to the wire; a German shepherd was set on them and tore out pieces of their flesh. After that, the victims were taken to the cemetery and shot".

A few days later, the Gestapo caught three UPA soldiers, two men and one woman, outside of Kalush county. First they took turns raping the women, them they tried all their captive with chains to trees and set the German shepherd on them. all three were shot at the cemetery. The author did not know the names of these people.

"At the end of May, 1944, the Gestapo, along with Uzbek and Kirghiz units, attacked the villages of Dovka Voinylivska, Siltse and Serednie. For two days, they plundered the villages and raped the women. A week later, as a physician, I verified the physical damage done to the population. About 120 women and even small girls had been raped. Later some of criminals, as I learned, was wiped out by UPA units".

"On Good Friday, 1944, the Gestapo, along with Hungarian troops, attacked the village of Kropyvnyk. They burned the village and took about 30 people, whom they shot after submitting them to terrible tortures in Falchynskyi's house. In addition to the villages already mentioned, the Gestapo burned Kadobna, Lopanky, Bolekhiv and others."

"During the German occupation, there was a Ukrainian business school in Kalush. In the fall of 1943, over a dozen students of that school were arrested on the charge of belonging to an underground organization. The arrested students were taken to Stanyslaviv, where they were all sentenced to death. Then they were brought back to Kalush and shot in the market square. It fell on me be witness to this tragedy".

There were many similar cases. The population, in self-defense, replied by counterattack.

The doctors of the Stanyslaviv region were ordered by the Gestapo to report all cases of wounds they treated. Failure to report such cases was punishable by death. The doctor were terrorized by being called frequently to report to the Gestapo and by arrests.

Dr. Dmytro Kapitan was arrested by the Gestapo in December, 1943, along with other members of the intelligentsia and peasants from Kalush and Nadvirna. The author describes the Gestapo's brutal behavior with the prisoners, whom they tortured and executed. He names a number of people who were shot by the Gestapo and whose names he managed to remember. Among them was a friend of his from student times, Dr. Yaroslav Kucherskyi, who was executed for treating sick UPA soldiers.

During their investigation, the Gestapo interrogated the author about his past, about people in the underground and other matters. But they did not have any information or evidence that he had treated wounded UPA soldiers, and this saved his life.


The author was born in the village of Mytsiv, in Sokal county (after 1939, Hrubeshiv county). She was the older to two sister; the younger sister's name was Olia. After completing the village school in 1940, Hanna enrolled in the business school in Belz. In her memoir, she describes her work in the Ukrainian Red Cross (UChKh).

In 1943, the final year of her studies. Polish partisans were attacking Ukrainian villages in the Kholm area. There were many hurt and wounded people. The only hospital in the area, in Belz, was full of injured people. there was a need for nursing assistance. The women students to the business school, including the author, volunteered to help in the hospital and serve the patients. The author turned out to be a good worker and was soon assisting the doctor and nurses. Later, she worked independently dressing wounds and doing other things for the patients. In the fall of 1943, the director of the hospital, Dr. Vorobets, and Dr. Medytskyi organized three-month-long courses for medical assistants, which the author successfully completed. In 1944, tensions increased, because fighting began between polish partisans and UPA units which were defending the Ukrainian villages. In the Summer of 1944, the Soviet-German front moved through and Hrubeshiv county become a part of Poland.

At that time, the author began to work in the underground UChKh. One of "Hania's" assignments was to bring medications from the Zhovkva forest (a distance of about 100 km). When she returned to her home region, she met Sherhiy Martyniuk ("Hrab"), who later became her husband. "Hania" began to do the work of a nurse and provide medical advice. In early spring 1945, the Ukrainian battalion commander "Yurchenko". He changed sides and began to cooperated with the NKVD in the Dolobychiv forest. Those killed included the author's friends, UChKh workers "Uliana" and "Zirka", as well as the leader, "Sviatoslav", and the propaganda officer, "Yaropolk", The NKVD and the traitor "Yurchenko" also searched through the villages for "Hania". "Yurchenko" knew her personally, because in the fall of 1944 she had served as medical assistant in his battalion.

In 1945-46, "Hania" lived through a number of dangerous and tense situations.

The author describes the tragic battle which took place in February, 1946, between the "Zirky" platoon, commanded by Yevhen Syvak ("Halaida"), and NKVD troops near the village of Lisky. With the platoon were also the commander of "Vovky" company, Mykhailo Kuras ("Krapka") and soldiers from his units. The pitched battle lasted almost the whole day and about 40 UPA soldiers were killed. they were buried in a mass grave near the church in Bilostik. At this time, "Hania" was in the neighboring village of Zhniatyn, along with the medical assistant "Olia" and their insurgent patients.

In the spring of 1946, while making some modifications to mine and rocket detonators, the author's fiancé, "Hrab", was injured. Splinters from the detonator wounded his face and a piece become deeply imbedded in his left eye. The wound in his eye did not heal and infection set in, which could not be treated under insurgent conditions. The only thing to be done was for him to get a specialist. At that time, the UPA command was cooperating with the Polish underground, the Armiha Krajowa (AK), which changed its name to WIN (Wolnosc i Nezawislosc). They organized joint attacks on communist centers in Verbovychi and Hrubeshiv. Using WIN contacts, "Hrab" was able to get to Lublin. There the renowned Polish eye specialist, Dr. Tadeusz Krwawicz, did a complicated operation on his eye. "Hrab" was supposed to stay in the hospital for a week, and than for examination and an additional operation on the lens of his eye. But a nurse who was working with the Polish underground informed "Hrab" that the State Security (UBP) was showing an interest in him. So on the day after the operation, "Hrab" left the hospital. Later, he returned to be examined by Dr. Krwawicz and it appeared that the eye was healing well. However, in the fall of 1946, the eye developed an acute infection. This time, it was not possible to save the eye. Dr. Krwawicz removed the infected eye and put in a prothesis.

The spring of 1947 was the most difficult period for the Hrubeshiv area. The "Akcja Wisla" was begun; two divisions of the Polish Army (VP) blockaded the Hrubeshiv county and were terrorizing the Ukrainian people and deporting them to Polish territory ("Recovered lands"). Those suspected of working with the underground were imprisoned or sent to the concentration camp in Jaworzno.

During the period of deportation, the author was released from the UChKh. "Hania" and her friend, "Olia" went to Poland in order to get Polish legal documents. This was not easy for "Hania" to achieve. The women had forged documents and very little money. The author traveled to different places in Poland, going to addresses obtained from "Hrab". She stayed for short periods in larger cities, such as Warsaw, Lodz and Gdansk, and in smaller places near Opole. It was difficult and dangerous for her to travel. She made attempts to stay close to her fiancé, "Hrab", who was temporary staying in the village of Dorkovo. She also made two attempts to stay in the village to which her parents had been transferred. She formally registered there and began to work on a state farm.

One winter night, she received a warning from an underground acquaintance, "Khmelnyk", that she should run away, because during his arrest by the UBP, he had revealed her identity. That same night, the author took a train to Bitow, where "Hrab" was working, and they both went to Dzierzanow in Silesia. There, "Hrab" found a job in a radio factory. In the meantime, Anna had been informed of the arrest of her parents. The parents were released after one week, but her sister and her friend from UChKh, "Olia", were sentenced to 10 years in prison. In Dzierzanow, "Hrab" lived under his own name, Serhiy Martyniuk. Life began to stabilize. Hanna and Serhiy got married and in 1950, moved to Warsaw, where Serhiy worked and continued his studies at the Politechnical Institute. However, in the spring of 951, Serhiy and Anna were uncovered by the MGB-UBP agent, Leonid Lapinskyi ("Zenon") and on May 4, they were arrested by MVD men dressed in UBP uniforms. They were held in Warsaw for one week, then taken to the investigative prison of Korolenko Street in Kiev.

Later in her memoir, the author talks about her experiences in prisons. At the time of her arrest, she was pregnant and she gave birth to a son, Oles, in prison on August 22 1951. After Christmas, 1952, she was sentenced to 10 years in prison. On January 21, during an extreme cold spell, she was packed into a freight wagon filled with prisoners. Their food consisted of a ration of bread, dry fish and boiling water. She rode in this way for four days, until they reached Magnitigorsk in the Urals. There she was shipped to the Verkhjneuralsk prison and placed into solitary confinement with her infant. The baby got sick and developed a high fever. As a result of her many desperate requests, the doctor on duty was sent to her cell. He was Jewish and exceptionally humane. Although there was a shortage of medications, he returned to her cell for several days and gave infections which saved the baby's life. she watched her baby grow and develop in the difficult prison conditions.

The prison in which Hanna was held was intended for foreign spies and diversionary and had a particularly strict regime. The prisoners were isolated from the world and from each other. Thus, the author did not know for a long time where her husband was, although he was held in the same prison. Finally, they learned about each other and began to write to each other.

Oles was approaching a year and the author found that after the age of one, babies were taken to a prison for homeless children or could be given to a family outside the prison. After ceaseless efforts, Anna got to see prison director and later had a short meeting with her husband. Serhiy succeeded in making contact with his aunt and after a lot of formalities, the arranged for Serhiy's aunt to take their son to live with her in the village of Orshkovychi. After that, Hanna was moved to a large cell which housed 13 women. among them were women who had held leading posts in the Ukrainian underground. Kateryna Zarytska, the director of the underground UChKh, was highly respected by the other prisoners. She was sentenced to 25 years. Halyna Didyk, a teacher by profession, headed the UChKh after Kateryna Zarytska's arrest. She fell into Soviet hands on March 5. 1950. Also in the cell was Darka Husak, a renowned OUN activist, who had also been sentenced to 25 years in prison. The prisoners in this cell included one Russian, one Pole, two Byelorussians, some Germans and Austrians. They all lived in friendship, like a big family. Before the winter of 1953, the prisoners from this cell were taken to the Vladimir prison. Serhiy was taken to Irkutsk in Siberia. Hanna was able to write to him through his aunt, who had their son, Oles.

After Stalin's death, Hanna was moved to a cell for foreigners because she had Polish citizenship. The prisoners in this cell were not badly off, because they obtained parcels from home and the UNRRA. Foreigners began to be freed from prisons and camps. In the summer of 1953, Anna was taken to the Women's zone of the Mordovian camps, where Polish prisoners form the whole USSR were being gathered together to be sent back to Poland. Here the author had more freedom and opportunity to communicate. Among the prisoners brought there she found her good friend from Hrubeshiv county, Ivanka Pshepiurska. Also in the camp waiting for release was Inka Komorowska, the wife of the chief commander of the Polish Armija Krajowa (AK), Bor Komoreowski. She was kidnapped by the NKVD form France. As a result of tortures and beatings, her legs were paralyzed and she was in a wheelchair.

The prisoner, including the author, were taken to the prison in Fordon in Poland and within a week, were freed. The author went to stay with her parents. After a time, she began to make measured to bring her son Oles and her husband to Poland. In the meantime, Serhiy had also been freed from prison, but being a citizen of Ukrainian SSR, he remained in Ukraine. The author obtained documents and went to Ukraine. There Serhiy and Hanna got married again, because the marriage documents from Poland were not formally recognized. After that, the Martyniuk family came to Warsaw with a group of Polish repatriates and after some difficulties, gradually became established. Serhiy finished his engineering studies at Warsaw Poytechnical Institute. The Martyniuk family now lives in Warsaw. They have two sons, Oles and Yarolsav, and a daughter, Halia.

Page 271. Natalka Kosarchyn-Marunchak. ORGANIZING THE UPA MEDICAL SERVICE

The author begins her memoir by describing the situation in Lviv in 1944. At the start of that year, the Germans intensified their arrests of Ukrainian student youth in Lviv and executions in the provinces. Natalka was living in an apartment with her brother, Yaroslav, who was a student of veterinary science and was also active in the anti-German underground. Because of the threat of arrest by the Gestapo, Yaroslav and his sister had to change their living quarters. In late February, 1944, Yaroslav left for the UPA in the Carpathians and a little later, Natalka entered the underground medical service as a nurse. From Lviv, Natalka moved to Khodiriv with Dr. "Volodymyr" and pharmacist "Oksana". In Khodoriv, they underwent two weeks of political training and instruction in the principles of secrecy. then they moved to the village of Strilyska Stari to work in the UPA medical service. The women's first assignment was to organize the medications and Dr. "Volodymyr" began to prepare a small field hospital. the trio worked tirelessly and in a short time had a pharmacy in place. "Volodymyr" began to successfully treat sick and wounded UPA soldiers. In late may and early June, the hospital was moved to larger premises in the village of Liubovnia. The Soviet-German front was rapidly approaching. Hungarian troops appeared in the neighboring villages and had some skirmishes with UPA soldiers. More and more soldiers, fortunately only lightly wounded, were coming to the field hospital. Natalka describes one case of a seriously wounded soldier who was brought for treatment at the hospital. Because of the lack of surgical equipment and drugs, it was not possible to operate and the man died. this was the first case of death in the hospital and it made the staff fell very depressed. The author describes several more notable events that occurred during her time in the UPA medical service. Once, when she returned home, she found on the table a note from her brother, Yaroslav, Through underground contacts he had learned by chance that his sister was staying in the village. However, he was not able to stay to wait for her, so he left her a note, which turned out to be a farewell note, for they never saw each other again. Natalka recalls with pleasure how she celebrated Easter in 1944 with Dr. "Volodymyr" and "Oksana". another important event was the inspection of the field hospital by the head of the medical service, "Daria". She was an old acquaintance of Natalka's, but during the inspection of the hospital they maintained all organizational formalities, including that of secrecy. They had an amicable conversation only later, when they met privately at home. As the Soviet-German front approached, the field hospital had to be disbanded. The tree staff members were ordered to leave the threatened territory and move to other areas, where they would try to contact the UPA. "Volodymyr" and "Oksana" left for their home regions, and Natalka set off from Strilyska Stari with the pharmacist and his family in the direction of Boelkhiv. They found themselves on territory controlled by Soviet partisans and they had to go further into the Carpathian, in the area of Skole. When the Soviet front approached, they were obliged to cross into Slovakia, and from there reached Western Europe.

Page 277. Olena Lebedovych ('Zoriana'). CARRYING MEDICATIONS ACROSS THE BORDER

In her memoir, the author describes one episode for her activity in the Ukrainian Red Cross. At the end of winter, 1945, she was given the assignment on organizing medical assistance for one of the UPA companies operating in the Lviv area. At that time, she was in the underground on the territory of the Polish People's Republic, near Uhniv. She left two children under the care of an old aunt in a border village. With a guard of well-trained UPA soldiers, she crossed the closely-guarded Soviet border. The group went through the forests with the help of underground contacts and reached the vicinity of the town of Zhovkva. They stopped briefly at a forester's house, where Olena succeeded in making contact and reached the vicinity of the town of Zhovkva. They stopped briefly at a forester's house, where Olena succeeded in making contact with lical UChKh workers. she gave them some of the medications she had brought and informed them about some medical matters. The next day, she planned to go to the field hospital, but was not able to do so. Soviet units of the "Red Broom" surrounded the forester's house. The UPA had to use force to break out of the encirclment. During this action, the soldier "Yarko" fell beside Olena, wounded in the leg. She grabbed him around the waist and ran with him towards a pile of cut wood. She hid the wounded man in the woodpile, and ran further into the woods. The Soviets saw her and began to shoot and ran after her. Olena managed to hide in a thicket under a fallen pine tree. In the evening, she found the wounded soldier, "Yarko", and set out with him towards the forester's hose. On the way, they met another soldier, who was slightly wounded in the arm. Around midnight, the three got to the forester's house. There they found part of the UPa company, among them, another three wounded solders. The soldiers from Olena's guard thought that she had been killed in the attack and had already left for Uhniv. The Soviets had taken away their wounded and returned to Zhovkva. In the morning, the UPA company changed its quarters. Olena, with a few UChKh workers and the wounded, moved to a hamlet, where they organized a small hospital in an underground bunker, in which the wounded were treated. In the spring, Olena returned to the Uhniv region. It was night when she reached the village where she had let her children. She saw candlelight burning in a church and so she stepped inside. Among those present, she saw her old aunt and a few of the soldiers who had been in her guard. To her surprise, she heard that the priest was saying a service for the dead in her memory. She crept out of the church to avoid disturbing the service. The soldiers happily greeted Olena "Zoriana" and found it hard to believe that she was alive. The next day she went to see her aunt and her children.

Page 283. Emilia Stefurak. THE HUTSUL REGION IN STRUGGLE

In her memoir, Emilie Stefurak briefly describes events and her work in the UChKh in the Kosiv region in 1943-1944.

In the spring of 1944, Hungarian military units, which together with the Germans operated on Hutsul territory, took 146 Ukrainian hostages in the town of Kosiv, among them, the author's husband, Dr. Vasyl Stefurak. Emilia and five other women made efforts to get German-Hungary military officials to free the hostages. After tireless efforts, facing all kinds of danger, the women succeeded in getting the release of all the hostages.

After that, the author with her husband moved to the village of Yavoriv, where they made contact with the Ukrainian Insurgent Army. On the order of the lical UPA command, they were assigned to the UPA medical units in the area of Zhabie. Dr. Vasyl Stefurak took charge of the medical care of two UPA battalions which operated on that territory. He directed the field hospital and did medical examinations of the soldiers. there were, on average, twelve patients undergoing treatment in the hospital. Emilia acted as pharmacist and assisted the doctor during operations.

Dr. Vasyl and Emilia Stefurak spent seven months in the UPA medical service. When the front approached, the field hospital was disbanded. The Stefuraks got to Bukovyna, then through Budapest to Vienna.

Page 295. Maria Bodnarenko-Repeckyi ('Oksana'). PICTURE FROM MY DAYS IN THE UChKh

The author of this memoir briefly describes various episodes from her work in the UChKh. She begins with a description of the women's medical assistant course which was given in April, 1944, in the town of Dobromyl, near Peremyshl. The aim of the course was to give basic medical assistance training to women who were going to work for the underground UChKh. The course lasted three weeks and had twenty-two students. The lectures were given by physicians who were practicing in Dobromyl - Dr. Roman Kushnir and Dr. Movchan. The organizers of the training course were Natalka Kozakevych and Maria Yarish, the directors of the women's network of the Peremyshl region OUN.

After completing training, the students went in different directions. Although "Oksana" was from the Hutsul region, she regained in the Peremyshl area, where she was assigned to organize an underground UChKh network in Birch region. Not long after completing the course, the author began giving medical help to wounded UPA soldiers and the population. "Oksana" gives a number of examples of her nursing work.

In June, 1944, she gave first aid to two UPA soldiers who had been wounded in a skirmish with a German army unit in the village of Zhohatyn.

In another case she tried to save the life of a woman who had tetanus in the village of Yavirnyk Ruskyi.

During the summer of 1945, during a raid in the village of Kotiv, in the Bircha region, special NKVD units shot a young woman, Katie, and seriously wounded her brother, Johnny, who died soon afterwards in terrible agony. The author tried to ease his pain. these young people were born in the USA, where their parents had worked for several years. The whole family supported the liberation struggle and helped the UPA.

In another incident, the author assisted an UPA soldier in a hiding place in the attic of a house. During unexpected fire, this soldier of the UPA technical Unit, Korniy, was seriously wounded.

Later in her memoir, the author discusses other aspects of her activity. she tried to find new volunteers for work in the UChKh and helped the training of medical assistants. Her most important assignment was to try to get medical supplies for UPA units in the Bircha district in whatever way she could. Here again, the author cites a number of her experiences.

In the town of Bircha, where there were WP army and police unit bases, there was a Ukrainian doctor practicing under the guise of being a Pole. In the summer of 1945, the author, protected by two soldiers, came to see him at night in order to get medications needed by the UPA.

Even the small quantity of medications she obtained from an American parachutist were very valuable to the UPA medical service. An American military plane which was flying over Peremyshl area in August, 1945, had a sudden accident and burst into flame. Eleven soldiers parachuted out of the plane and the author met one of them in the village of Zhohatyn, where he gave her a small quantity of first aid medications.

In the autumn of 1945, the local Peremyshl underground directors tried to make contacts with representatives of the Polish anti-Soviet underground. "Oksana" took part in one such meeting, in hope of getting some needed medications for her district with the help of Polish contacts.

During the years of her difficult and dangerous work in the underground, "Oksana" always had good luck. Everywhere she went, she met friendly people who helped her, A great service was dime to the author by an old priest, Father Hladysh, and his daughter, Olia, who lived in Tyriava Voloska. The author often stayed in the priest's house. She describes one incident when, with the help of father Hladysh and Olia, she managed to get the town of Sianok and buy a large supply of drugs from the pharmacy.

Page 309. Anna Bailak ('Roma'). PHYSICIAN HALINA YAKUBIUK

In her memoir, the author writes about Halina Yakubiuk, a physician of Polish nationally from Tomaszow-Lubelski who treated UPA soldiers, and about the nurses Yulia and Ksenia.

In 1947, Anna Bailak shared a cell in the Polish Security (UBP) investigation prison in Rzeszow, Poland with Dr. Halina. Halina was arrested for treating UPA soldiers. In spite of the danger, Halina did not hesitate to give medical assistance to ill and wounded Ukrainian insurgents, because she regarded this as her professional duty. After three months of imprisonment, Halina was freed. She did not forget about the author and sent her food parcels.


The two nurses, Yulia and Ksenia, worked in the hospital in Mostyska near Lviv. The author got to know them well. Anna Bailak describes how in August, 1944, when the Germans were leaving the Mostyska region, she tried to get medical supplies for UPA medical Units. Together with the nurses Yulia and Ksenia, the author worked out a plan and took the needed medications and medical supplies from a hospital storeroom.


The author of this memoir, who served as medical assistant in the UPA company commanded by Hryhoriy Yankivskyi ("Lastivka"), describes the training given to UPA unit medical service workers in the village of Yamna Hrishna near Peremyshl during the spring of 1945. Later, he describes an event which remained fixed in his memory, a skirmish with the Soviets in which two SKV soldiers were killed.

In 1946, Osyp was assigned as medical assistant to "Lastivka's" company. He describes the duties which he carried out.

The author tells us that in accordance with the orders of the UPA command, he also gave first aid to wounded soldiers of the Polish army, although the Poles tortured or killed Ukrainian prisoners of war. Wounded soldiers of the "Lastivka" company who were only lightly and sick were sent to underground UPA hospitals.

Page 352. Dr. Petro Motsiuk. DR. SAMUEL NEUMAN, UPA PHYSICIAN

Dr. Samuel Neuman opened a medical practice in Stryi in 1937. He was Jewish and was fluent in Ukrainian, Polish and German, so he was a popular doctor among all these ethnic groups. In particular, he had good relations with the Ukrainian community.

During the time of the German occupation and the creation of a Jewish ghetto in Stryi, he got temporary permission to continue his private practice. He was helped in this by the Ukrainian Aid Committee and the "Judenrat". When the Gestapo drove his mother to the ghetto, he left his medical practice and volunteered to join her. Shortly after this, the Gestapo began to remove ghetto residents and shoot them.

With the help of the Ukrainian anti-German underground, Dr. Neuman escaped from the ghetto with his mother. The underground gave them documents, his being in the name Dr. V. Maksymovych. Under this name, he practiced in various places in the Stryi region. In September, 1943, when the Gestapo found out about him. He escaped into the underground and became an UPA doctor.

In October, 1944, the Soviets attacked the "Oleni" officers' school. Killed in the battle was the commander of the school, Fedir Poliobyi ("Pol") and some other members of the command. The trainees and the rest of the command, including Dr. Maksymovych, escaped from the encirclment. Later, he set out for Hungary with a group of trainees, but because of his mother's illness, ended up staying in Lavochne.

Dr. Samuel Neuman - V. Maksymobych was probably killed in the Chornyi forest in July 1945.

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