On July 10, an event was held at the Culture Center of Papilė to tell about the former local Jewish community until the beginning of the Holocaust in 1941.
The event at the Culture Center started with the presentation of the ethnographic project implemented in the summer of 2020. Kristina Dorofėjienė, a teacher at Simonas Daukantas Gymnasium in Papilė, together with her students, encouraged by Eugenijus Bunka, Director of the Jakovas Bunka Charity and Sponsorship fund, implemented a project about the life of the Jewish community in Papilė before the Nazi occupation. In the summer of 2020, the students interviewed several of the oldest residents in the town and created a map of Papilė with highlighted houses where local Jews had lived or worked until 1941.
After the presentation of the project, a music group from Vilnius „Klezmer Klangen“sang songs in Yiddish. Later, a memorial plaque was unveiled near the Cultural Center, reminding that this was the site of the former synagogue.
The Road of Memory, a march to commemorate the first victims of the Holocaust in Papilė, began at the Cultural Center. A group of people – young people from the Riflemen’s Union, several teachers from Papilė Simonas Daukantas Gymnasium, from Tryškiai, Mažeikiai Merkelis Račkauskas and Veiviržėnai gymnasiums, the family of Diana and Marijus Lopaičiai and a representative of the Secretariat of the International Commission – marched more than nine kilometers to Šiaudinės forest, where in mid-July of 1941, the male Jews of Papilė were shot. Teacher Kristina Dorofėjienė told the participants of the Road of Memory in Šiaudinės forest a story of that location.
The Road of Memory in Papilė is one of the events commemorating the victims of the Holocaust, organized in Lithuania within the framework of the project “Road of Memory 1941 – 2021”, which is dedicated to the marking of the mass murder of Jews in Lithuania 80 years ago.
Moments from the event:
Photos by Marijus Lopaitis