born: November 16, 1913 in Nisko, Poland
died: November 27, 1965 in London, Great Britain
wife: Irena nee Drożdż – wedding in April 1939
medals: Polish: Cross of Valour
Fates before joining Anders Army :
Jan Bielatowicz stayed with his parents in Rzeszów and Pilzno, and from 1922 in Tarnów, where his father was a city doctor. He attended the State Gymnasium of Kazimierz Brodziński in Tarnów. In 1930, he made his debut in the magazine “Nasze Życie”. In 1931 – editor of the Tarnów youth magazine “Czyn”, of which he was co-founder. Then he passed his final exams and in 1931 he started studying at the Jagiellonian University in Cracow. He studied Polish philology and prehistory. In 1937 he obtained a master’s degree in Polish studies. He worked as a journalist.
In the September Campaign of 1939, he served in the 5th Podhale Rifle Regiment. Then he crossed the Hungarian border. Interned in the Kisbodak camp. From January to April 1940, he was active in the office organizing the redeployment of Polish soldiers to France. In 1940, he war arrested and imprisoned in a camp in Komarom, from where he escaped through Yugoslavia and Turkey and made his way to Palestine. In Haifa, he joined the Independent Carpathian Rifle Brigade. He fought to defend Tobruk and Gazala. In 1942, he was sent to the Reserve Cadets School.
After the merger of the Independent Carpathian Rifle Brigade with the troops of the Polish Armed Forces in the USSR, he became a soldier of the 3rd Carpathian Rifle Division of the 2nd Corps. He participated in the Italian campaign, including the Battle of Monte Cassino or Predappio as a second lieutenant of the 3rd battalion of the 3rd Carpathian Rifle Division. He cooperated with the editorial offices of “Orzeł Biały” and “Dziennik Żołnierza”. In the years of 1944-1946 he compiled and published 4 volumes of an anthology of poetry, whose authors were mostly soldiers of the 2nd Corps. After the end of the war, he stayed in the 2nd Corps in Italy until 1946, and in 1946 he left with the army for Great Britain. He stayed in Freckenham and Chippenham soldier camps.
After World War II, he remained in exile in Great Britain. In 1956 he obtained a PhD from the London School of Economics. In the years 1953-1961 he was a lecturer at the University of Hong Kong, and then also at Harvard University in Karachi (Pakistan) and the University of Sussex (England). Member, and in the years 1981-2003 President of the Polish Scientific Society Abroad. In the years 1981-1986 Minister of the Interior Affairs and Deputy Prime Minister in the Polish Government in Exile. In 1986-1990, the last Prime Minister of the Polish Government in Exile. Author of numerous scientific and journalistic publications. Founder of World Research Council on Poles Abroad. Edward Szczepanik died in Worcestershire in 2005 and was buried in the cemetery in Suwałki.
author: Aneta Hoffmann, Warsaw, Poland