Left to right: Rita Schneps, Vermont Holocaust Memorial; Judita Clow, Craftsbury, VT; and Ambassador of Lithuania to the United States, Audra Plepyte. Photos Credit: Vermont Holocaust Memorial.
The Ambassador of Lithuania to the United States, Audra Plepytė, recently visited Craftsbury to present Lithuania’s state award, The Life Saving Cross, to Vermonter Judita Clow. The award was presented to Ms. Clow to recognize her parents’ bravery in saving a Jewish girl, Genia Rudnik, during the Holocaust. “It is an inspiring story of courage and hope,” said Ambassador Plepyte.
Vermont Holocaust Memorial Board member, Rita Schneps of Wolcott, attended the ceremony bestowing bouquets of local flowers wrapped in the colors of the Lithuanian flag to both Ms. Clow and the Ambassador. Mrs. Schneps thanked Ms. Clow for the heroism and caring shown by her family during that horrific time in history.
According to the Republic of Lithuania, “The Life Saving Cross is conferred on persons who, despite danger to them, performed acts of bravery in saving the life of other people … The majority of the recipients awarded the Life Saving Cross in recent years are citizens of Lithuania who saved the Jews during Nazi occupation. In case of a posthumous award, the insignia as well as the certificate of the Cross are presented to the family. Around 250 persons were awarded the Life Saving Cross for this act of bravery during the Second World War.”
For details of this specific lifesaving story see: https://www.yadvashem.org/yv/en/exhibitions/righteous-sportsmen/zilevicius.asp.