Former SS Brigade Member Remained Unknown for Decades

A member of the SS brigade who was believed to have taken part in the killings of the Holocaust managed to live out his days in the United Kingdom unbeknownst to those who were looking for him. This man, named SerhijWoronyj, spent nearly seventy years in a London council flat while gaining employment as a printer. The former SS brigade member eventually died of a heart attack in 2013.

Woronyj was one of the men who helped the Nazis fight the resistance movement in the Warsaw Ghetto, and also helped the Nazis in the destruction of multiple villages in which Jewish residents found refuge. He and his fellow soldiers were merciless in these assaults, killing Jewish civilians left and right. The SS brigade burned down houses and blew up numerous structures. Those who tried to escape the carnage were quickly met with death by gunfire. The assaults in which Woronyj participated killed hundreds of thousands of Jews when all was said and done.

He did not simply disappear at war’s end, as might be expected from his later life in London. He was actually captured by Allied forces, but was eventually let go. He settled down in Archway, where the former SS brigade member was said to have largely kept to himself. His former identity was only discovered recently when a researcher named Dr. Ankier made it his mission to find out the whereabouts of numerous former Nazis who seemed to have simply vanished after the war. As it turns out, a number of them were leading simple civilian lives with neighbors who knew nothing of their pasts, the Mail Online reports.

A relative of Woronyj know lives in his former London home, but has not said much on whether or not he has knowledge on his cousin’s life during the war. Even researchers are not entirely clear on some of the details regarding the SS brigade under which Woronyj served. The Galician division was said to have been a strictly anti-Soviet operation, yet they are also known to have taken part in the extermination of vast numbers of Jews in Poland.

The fact that an SS brigade member could lead such a quiet life unbeknownst to his neighbors has sparked interest in other such stories. While Woronyj has passed away, there are many former Nazis out there who have still not been tried for their crimes. Many of these men are arrested and extradited on a semi-frequent basis. Whether or not the same fate should have befallen this particular SS brigade member prior to his death is up for debate, though many who have spoken on the matter appear to lean toward extradition.

Ian Harvey

Ian Harvey is one of the authors writing for WAR HISTORY ONLINE