Sunday, 24 January 2010

Budek! Scouts in SA

Scouting groups quickly formed in the DP camps, beginning on 25th July 945 in Detmolde, in the British zone. The Academic scouts formed in 1946 in Augsburg.
Scouts worked enthusiastically as they believed that on returning to a free Lithuania they would be able to use the scout ideals of honouring God, Freedom for your country and betterment of people.

Not disheartened by the fact that many would not return home, the scouts instead saw immigration as an opportunity to spread the word globally on the Lithuania’s occupation.

The first Lithuanian scouts to come to Australia had already organised themselves on the ship from Europe. Borisas Dainutis organised the scouts aboard the ship the General Heintzelman.

The scouts were organised into 6 groups.

At the beginning of 1949 the troops were reorganised by location into 6 troops.

IV Troop Adelaide

1. VITKŪNAS Alfredas
2. GRIGONIS Algimantas
3. ŽURAUSKAS Tadas
4. DAINIUS Vytautas
5. GALINIS Vytautas
6. VITKŪNAS Bronius
7. ČIZAUSKAS Juozas
8. SKIDZEVIČIUS M? only V or N
9. JANULEVIČIUS Gediminas

V Troop – Leigh Creek

1. DONIELA Vytautas
2. BRENEIŽERIS Vytautas
3. DUNDA Algimantas
4. KARMAŽINAS Leonas
5. GARBALIAUSKAS Leonardas
6. NAVAKAS A
7. NAVAKAS Vaclovas or Vytautas

VI Troop – Port Lincoln

1. NEVERAUSKAS Vytas
2. KAMINSKAS Benedictas
3. NEVERAUSKAS Jonas
4. RUDZINSKAS Jonas
5. BALANDIS Leonas
6. JARUSEVIČIUS Jonas
7. GURTAJUS Algirdas

Thursday, 14 January 2010

They made a film about him!


In 1970, Lithuanian Simas Kudirka sought asylum from the Soviets by jumping onto an US Coast Guard ship. He was a radio operator on a Russian fishing boat. His defection failed and he was sentenced to ten years in a Soviet gulag. As it turned out his mother was actually born in the US, but the family moved back to Lithuania. Because of this four years later, in 1974, Simas and his wife and two children were granted US citizenship. Simas became a spokesperson for a free Lithuania.

In June 1980 he was a guest of the Lithuanian community in Australia. On his visit to Adelaide, he took part in the annual mass deportation commemorations, by laying a wreath at the War Memorial on North Terrace.

His story was made into a film The defection of Simas Kudirka, staring Alan Arkin as Simas.

I can remember being at the War Memorial that day, the first 'real' Lithuanian I had seen.