William Kaczynski helps us learn more about the Holocaust

By Candice Krieger, October 26, 2010

Pensioner William Kaczynski has dedicated the past 20 years to ensuring that the Holocaust is never forgotten.

Mr Kaczynski, a 74 year-old retired hat maker, is putting together a book featuring postcards, letters, envelopes and exit visas from the War. The book, which includes both dialogue and pictures, is being sponsored by the British Library. Born in Germany, he came to England with his parents in 1936.

He tells People: "I found an envelope that was addressed to my mother during the Second World War and became so interested in collecting items of postal history relating to the plight of the Jewish people in general during the war."

Mr Kaczynski has since continued to build up his collection of postcards and envelopes - some to and from concentration camps, and internment camps across the world.

He has nearly finished the book but is searching for a final piece of evidence: one of the 3,000 transit visas given to Lithuanian Jews by the Japanese consul in Kovno, Sempo Sugihara, which helped them to flee Hitler. He says: "This is the last thing I need for the chapter on people that made a difference.

"It is just amazing that the book is coming to fruition. I feel a bit like Martin Luther King: I have a dream, which is that as soon as the book is published I want to republish it for schools to be given to pupils alongside The Diary of Anne Frank. I feel it is so important."

Mr Kaczynski, who lives in north London urges anyone who may know the whereabouts of one of the transit visas given to Lithuanian Jews to contact Marcia.perkin@ntlworld.com.

Last updated: 12:40pm, October 26 2010