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On Friday, June 16, 2023, the documentary “The Voice of the Graves” premiere took place. Thank you to everyone who was with us. The movie was very well received, and we got many compliments. The film is with English and Polish subtitles!

I want to thank Ms. Henrietta Nowakowski for taking on a patriotic project and giving us a chance to document the implementation of the project.

I want to point out that the Polish General Consulate in Chicago contributed to the document, supporting us financially. Thank you!

Also, I like to thank my wonderful colleagues – Mietek Oniśkiewicz and Andrzej Miłosz, for their cooperation and for making the documentary film. Andrzej Miłosz from WXYZ-TV ABC Detroit, a Polish Media Center team member, was awarded the 2023 Michigan Emmy Award.  

We honored the Polish veterans buried in Holy Sepulcher Cemetery the last weekend. It was a long way to the dedication of the Polish soldiers resting at a cemetery in Southfield. “Mrs. Henrietta Nowakowski project” was founded in 2007; 15 years have passed since the beginning of the idea to honor the nameless and forgotten veterans of the Polish Army in France (Blue Army). Our documentary is a tribute to the soldiers fighting for Poland’s independence and honoring Mrs. Henrietta Nowakowski, giving her a rightful place in the history of the Polish diaspora in the USA.

Congratulations to Mrs. Henrietta Nowakowski!

Henrietta Nowakowski is the originator and leading figure in the project to restore the memory of the forgotten soldiers of the Blue Army in France, buried in the Holy Sepulchre Cemetery.

Henrietta  was born and raised in metro Detroit, Michigan, of Polish Pre-World War I immigrants Ignacy, a soldier in the Blue Army, and Aniela Zapytowski. Both parents were deeply involved in Polish activities from the First World War through the interwar years and during and after World War II.

Henrietta’s Polonian life began with membership in the Polish Falcons of America, where she has been a member since early childhood. Henrietta is a very active member of many Polish and American Polish organizations, including the Polish American Congress, Friends of Polish Art, Polish Falcons of America, and the American Council for Polish Culture.

She has been honored many times for her social work promoting Polish culture and history. During the dedication ceremony, Mrs. Henrietta Nowakowski was awarded by the Institute of National Remembrance in Warsaw (IPN) and by The Polish Army Veterans’ Association in America (SWAP). She got the gold medal, “The Reipublicae Memoriae Meritum”.

The “Reipublicae Memoriae Meritum” medal is intended for those who build a republic of memory, a free, independent, sovereign, and democratic Poland. This is what the reverse of this medal says about, where you can read the words of one of the Fathers of Polish Independence, Marshal Józef Piłsudski: “A nation that loses its memory ceases to be a nation.” Mrs. Henrietta proves that when building a common republic of memory, free Poland, we think about history at the Institute of National Remembrance and important government institutions and on the social forum and everyday activities. We extend our heartfelt congratulations to Mrs. Nowakowski. Poland in exile lives thanks to people like Pai Henrietta; long live the republic of memory!

The Association of Veterans of the Polish Army in America awarded Mrs. Henrietta Nowakowski General Haller’s Army Commemorative Badge or Haller’s Swords – a commemorative badge awarded to soldiers of the Polish Army in France during the Second Polish Republic by the Board of the Haller’s Association, and later, to this day – to distinguished veterans. She also was honored with a medal, “Armed Deed 1917-1920 of the Polish American Diaspora”, whose creator was the well-known sculptor Andrzej Pitynski.

Congratulations to Mrs. Henrietta Nowakowski!

Photo: Henrietta Nowakowski & Mike Zapytowski – daughter and grandson of the Blue Army soldier Ignacy Zapytowski.

You can watch a documentary about the implementation of the project of restoring the names of the soldiers of the Blue Army on or YouTube Polish Weekly.

Alicja Karlic







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