Internet users come to aid of Uprising hero after crooks swindled him out of life savings
Internet users have come to the rescue of a Warsaw Uprising hero after he was recently tricked out of life savings set aside to fix a leaky roof.
When he was just sixteen Bogusław Czarmiński risked his life delivering post under heavy bombardment for the people of Warsaw in zones of the capital controlled by the Home Army during the Uprising in 1944. His nom de guerre was ‘Maszynka’.
Now at ninety-two he has become the victim of ruthless conmen posing as roofing contractors who walked away with PLN 10,000 that Czarmiński had saved to repair his roof in time for the winter cold.
In desperation, Czarmiński turned to BohaterON, a nationwide campaign that commemorates and helps those who took part in the Warsaw Uprising.
“Unfortunately, my old age has caused a lack of vigilance and too much good faith. For a supposed brave insurgent, and I let myself be fooled,” Czarmiński said on the campaign’s Instagram page.
“Although it is hard to believe, a participant of the Warsaw Uprising - Bogusław Czarmiński a.k.a. ‘Maszynka’, a scout of the Grey Ranks, the ‘bringer of joy’ who risked his life to deliver correspondence to civilians – has fallen victim to ruthless crooks claiming to be a roofing company,” BohaterON wrote on Zrzutka.pl.
A leaking roof forced Czarmiński to look for a roofing company that would repair the roofing of his house. He was initially pleased, because he found an advert online for a company that offered a good price.
At the beginning, everything looked in order. The men came in a big van covered with a company's logo. They brought tools with them and climbed onto the roof to start tearing off parts of it.
There was nothing that could have aroused Czarmiński’s suspicions. Therefore, without hesitation, he paid them the agreed amount of PLN 10,000, for which he received a handwritten receipt.
After the money was handed over, all contact with the company stopped. The address written on the receipt turned out to be a butcher’s shop.
He appealed for help to insurgent charity BohaterON, which launched a fundraising appeal on zrzutka.pl writing: “Urgently needed help for a deceived 92-year-old Warsaw Insurgent! Bogusław has lost his savings, which he had gathered to repair a leaking roof. We have launched a collection to repair the roof! We must make it before winter!”
Readers quickly responded and within days had exceeded the target, raising PLN 32,493.
During the Uprising, Czarmiński served in the Grey Ranks, which was the codename for the underground paramilitary Polish Scouting Association.
Younger members were trained in secret schools for future duties, while older scouts took part in sabotage.
The oldest members from 17 and over formed combat groups that carried out assassinations of members of the SS.
During the Uprising, members of the Grey Ranks liberated Gęsiówka concentration camp.
As a younger member of the Grey Ranks, Czarmiński was involved in the scout field post. Forty mail boxes were set up in points around Warsaw controlled by the insurgents.
The post played a key role in maintaining communication between the people of Warsaw during the Uprising.
During the 63 days of the uprising, postal workers in scout uniforms delivered around 200,000 items. Many of them died or were wounded.
More details of the campaign to help Bogusław Czarmiński can be found at: https://zrzutka.pl/6mhkpx