Mira Fuchrer, Sara Biderman, Tosia Altman

Mira Fuchrer  (born in 1920 in Warsaw, died on 8 May 1943 in Warsaw) – a member of the Jewish Combat Organization and a heroine of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. From an early age, she was a member and activist of the Zionist Hashomer Hatzair organization, where she probably met Mordechaj Anielewicz – her future life partner.

Shortly after the outbreak of the Second World War, together with Anielewicz, she left for Wilno, from where they both returned to Warsaw in January 1940. In November of the same year, they found themselves in the Warsaw Ghetto. Together with Towa Frenkel and Rachela Zylberg, Mira took up employment in a small tailors’ cooperative. She was involved with the Jewish Combat Organization from the very beginning, working as a liaison officer of the command. Her duties included travelling to other ghettoes in occupied Poland.

During the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, Mira fought in the central ghetto, together with Mordechaj Anielewicz. On 8 May 1943, while in the headquarters bunker at No. 18 Miła Street, she committed suicide along with numerous other fighters.

By a decision of President Bolesław Bierut of 19 April 1948, she was posthumously awarded the Silver Cross of the Virtuti Militari War Order. Her name is inscribed on a commemorative obelisk that was erected in 2006 at the foot of the Anielewicz Mound, along with those of 50 other insurgents whose identities were determined.

Sara Biderman (born in 1920 or 1923 in Warsaw, died in 1972 in Israel) – the child of a poor, traditional Jewish family from Warsaw. She attended a Jewish school in which Polish was the language of instruction. Before the war, she planned to study architecture, but failed the entrance exams. In their course, however, she met Helena Balicka, with whom she became friends. Before the ghetto was sealed off, she went to the Balickis to say goodbye to Helena – who later visited her in the ghetto. Biderman became involved in underground activity. Sara did not leave the ghetto, even though she was fixed up with a Catholic birth certificate. She finally escaped towards the end of April 1943, in the course of the uprising. She went to the Balickis, who gave her assistance. She stayed there for some time, however she failed to observe basic rules of safety and regularly left the house. Following the outbreak of the Warsaw Uprising in 1944, Sara joined the 3 Battalion of the People’s Army, while following the defeat she was sent to forced labour in Germany. After the war, she lived for some time in a kibbutz in Łódź, and then left for Palestine.

Tosia Altman (proper name Tova Altman, born on 24 August 1918 in Lipno, died on 26 May 1943 in Warsaw) – although she came from an Orthodox family, her parents provided her with an education in both Polish and Hebrew. As a 11-year-old girl, she joined the Hashomer Hatzair. Over time, she became an instructor and educator. She was also the editor of the Hebrew newspaper “Hanawadim”. Tosia wanted to go to Palestine, however she changed her plans after becoming a member of the command of Hashomer Hatzair in Warsaw in 1938.

From the beginning of the German occupation, she involved herself in organizing a Jewish resistance movement, among others helping establish the underground structures of Hashomer Hatzair in the General Government. As a liaison officer, she travelled throughout occupied Poland, and also set up self-defence groups – among others in the Wilno ghetto. In the years 1941–1942, she visited the ghettoes of Grodno, Białystok, Częstochowa and the Dąbrowa Basin, elaborating reports on the conditions prevailing in these enclaves.

She maintained a correspondence with other members of Hashomer Hatzair, at the same time gathering funds for the organization and acquiring false documents. As a liaison officer, she visited many cities in occupied Poland, among others Kraków, Białystok, Łódź, Grodno, Częstochowa and Lwów.

In the second half of 1942, she joined the Jewish Combat Organization. She operated on the so-called Aryan side, smuggling weapons into the ghetto. Tosia returned to the ghetto a few days before the uprising broke out. She was one of the few persons hiding in the bunker at No. 18 Miła Street who managed to escape from the German sweep operation on 8 May 1943.

She returned to Warsaw a few days later and hid, together with other members of Hashomer Рatzair, in a celluloid film factory in the Praga district of Warsaw (at No. 10 11 Listopada Street). On 24 May 1943, a fire was accidentally started at the facility, resulting in the deaths of eight Jewish fighters. Three others, severely burned, managed to get to the roof. Tosia Altman was among them. Tragically, she died of her wounds.