28 February 1920|
|Died||16 November 2014 (aged 94)
|Other names||Jadwiga Jaraczewska|
|Education||Wanda Szachtmajer Female High School|
|Alma mater||Newnham College, Cambridge
Polish University Abroad
|Employer||Office of Urban Planning (London County Council)|
|Children||Krzysztof Józef Jaraczeski
Joanna Maria Onyszkiewicz
|Parent(s)||Józef Piłsudski (father)
Aleksandra Szczerbińska (mother)
|Relatives||Wanda Piłsudska (sister)|
|| Polish Air Forces
RAF: Air Transport Auxiliary
|Years of service||1942-1944|
|Rank||Second Officer (Flying Officer)|
|Unit||1st Ferry Pool, White Waltham|
Jadwiga Piłsudska-Jaraczewska (28 February 1920 – 16 November 2014) was a Polish pilot, who served in the Air Transport Auxiliary during the Second World War. She was one of two daughters of Marshal and Chief of State Józef Piłsudski.
Life and career
Piłsudska was born on 28 February 1920, in Warsaw, Poland, the younger daughter of Marshal Józef Piłsudski, Poland's Chief of State (1918–22) and dictator (1926–1935), by the woman who would later become his second wife, Aleksandra Piłsudska (née Aleksandra Szczerbińska).
In September 1939, Poland was invaded by Germany, initiating the Second World War, and her family realized that under the circumstances it would be prudent to leave the country immediately. Piłsudska fled with her mother and elder sister, Wanda, to Lithuania and eventually arrived in the United Kingdom. She resumed her studies, in 1940, matriculating at Newnham College, Cambridge University.
Later she acquired her aircraft pilot's license, and in July 1942, she joined the Air Transport Auxiliary. With the rank of Second Officer (Flying Officer) she flew unarmed military aircraft in the dangerous skies of wartime Britain and was, with Anna Leska and the Lithuanian-Pole Barbara Wojtulanis, one of several Polish women who served as wartime ferry pilots in Britain.
In 1944, she took a leave of absence to continue her studies by enrolling in the Polish School of Architecture at Liverpool University. In 1946 she graduated with an engineering degree in architecture.
Due to the Communist takeover in Poland, she remained in England after the War, as a political émigré. She has never accepted British citizenship. She used a Nansen passport, valid for all countries in the world, except Poland.
In 1990, with the collapse of the Communist government, she returned to Poland and lived in Warsaw.
- T. J. Krzystek, Personel Polskich Sił Powietrznych w Wielkiej Brytanii w latach 1940-1947 łącznie z Pomocniczą Lotniczą Służbą Kobiet (PLSK-WAFF), Agencja Lotnicza ALTAIR - Krajowa Rada Lotnicza, Warszawa 2007
- A. Romanowski, Piękne wczoraj, "Apokryf", No 13 (in Tygodnik Powszechny, No 45/1998)
- Jadwiga Pilsudska-Jaraczewska: Pilot daughter of Marshal Pilsudski who served the Air Transport Auxiliary during WW2