*1900 - 1972
*Recognized in 1974
Kaišiadorių district, Lithuania
About the rescuer and the rescue story
Before the war, Juozas Stakauskas studied theology and philosophy in Austria. After receiving his doctorate, he returned to his homeland, where he was appointed to be a director of the city archive. When the Germans occupied Lithuania, Stakauskas, who moved to Vilnius, learned that they were killing Jews and, motivated by his religious faith, decided to save as many as he could. Stakauskas turned to the local governor, asking him to appoint the staff needed for archival work. He was given ten workers from the local ghetto. During the action carried out by the Germans, those Jews remained in the archive and thus saved themselves. Later, the authorities dedicated an additional building to the government archives in the former Benedictine monastery, built in such a way that it was a labyrinth. At that time, Stakauskas decided that it was the right time to completely hide the Jewish workers in the archive. Together with their childhood friend Vladas Žemaitis, a carpentry and physics teacher, they prepared a hiding place for the Jews in one of the rooms of the new building, deliberately not indicating it in the building diagram submitted to the authorities. In 1943 September 12 Jews arrived in the secret cell, including three children. It was quite risky because there were people working in the archives during the day, including Germans. Stakauskas turned to Marija Mikulska, a nun and French teacher who worked at the archive as a night watchman during the Nazi occupation, for help. Mikulska warned the Jews about any changes in the work order, and together with Stakauskas and Žemaitis managed to get and bring food to the Jews. At night, Mikulska could take some of them into her room where they could shower.
Miriam Rolnik Lisauskienė Aristocrats of hiding. Memories. The Righteous Among the Nations. Compiled by Rimantas Stankevičius, Seimas publishing house "Valstybės žinios", Vilnius, 2003
"To say thank you for saving to J. Stakauskas could not even be mentioned. He said that he did not do anything special during the rescue. One person helping another is a natural state. The desire to help everyone who could was characteristic of J. Stakauskas. After saving the lives of seventeen people, he sorrowed, that it was not possible to save even more. And for a non-believer J. Stakauskas was a holy man - it was one thing to hide those condemned to death in a village, a barn, and quite another thing in a city, in an organization where people come, there is a movement, there are Germans and there is no one who asks for rescue J. Stakauskas was not led by a specific person's request, but simply by the need to save under any conditions."
Rescued persons (Yad Vashem webpage):
Samuel Aleksand Libo
Mita Markovska Bak
Esther Fira Jaffe Kantarovich
Miriam Rolnik Lisauskienė
Juozapas and Aleksandr Libo
Miriam Rolnik Lisauskienė