Edward Rinke was one of the leading Polish bantamweight boxers, when 1939 year, German troops entered Polish. The outbreak of war forced him to abandon the practice and catching up arms. He joined the civil defense Bydgoszcz, also participated in the suppression of German sabotage. When the Germans entered the city, still fared quite well, got a job in one of the department stores. It was not long, I soon learned of the occupiers anti-German activity Rinkego.
It put some nice neighbor. Margarette Ummerle uznała, the Gestapo should know more about the young Pole. Rinke A few days later he was in prison in Szczecin, from there it was transferred to Berlin, Then Wejherowo, Crown, finally hit the wire in the Mauthausen concentration camp. It was there once again came to the ring, to face in a boxing duel. This time, however, he did not fight for points. Fighting for survival.
In order to survive we had to Mauthausen be lucky, flair, exceptional strength or skill with which knew how to use. By Konzentrationslager around Linz passed over 300 thousands of prisoners, Germany according to various estimates there led to the death of approximately 100 thousands of people.
Boxer w roll kapo
Boxing at Mauthausen were not uncommon, it was a favorite pastime guards, and for prisoners (often forced to appear in the stands) opportunity to break away from the everyday hopeless. The Germans had their favorite, which had sent volunteers to fight against. He was a powerful capo named Palzer. Before the war he was a boxer, Mauthausen and enjoyed a notorious prisoners merciless brute.
It got to the camp Rinke, Palzer confronted with another Pole. Z Auschwitz Thurs Mauthausen bowiem trafil Antoni Czortek. Vice Europe 1938 , he had already had a duel camp - Auschwitz crossed gloves with SS man Walter. Germany was preparing for a long fight, threatened and threatened… The first blow fell on the board and have not raised. With Palzer Czortków did not go so easily, to the dismay of Polish prisoners, lost the duel. Morale fell in the Polish barracks, a kapo became even more brutal towards our compatriots.
Somehow, that's when the camp came Rinke, Germany and someone whispered a word about his boxing skills. When you understand, this is not gossip, Bydgoszcz boxer received a lighter work in the boiler room and three weeks to prepare for battle. Few gave him a chance to beat the German roślejszego. Bantamweight weight versus weight average? No chance!
Still, or perhaps because of differences in stature both boxers, Rinkemu countrymen helped as they could. Townspeople leftovers, trembling hand that managed to subtract itself from paragraph. Assisted in the performance of daily duties. All this, pognębił someone finally brutal kapo.
He fought for the thousands of people killed
Fights take place in the gorge, ring was on the bottom. On the slopes while the audience sat, reportedly showed up that day were about 35 one thousand. Everyone waited for the last fight of the day - in the eighth duel “new” Pole camp was aggressive nose guard grate. History of dueling quotes Slawomir Wojciechowski in a comprehensive monograph on Polonia Bydgoszcz “Lost Generation”.
To look your opponent in the eye, Rinke had to look up.
– When I came out to the ring, stood in front of me confident boxer with impudent face - Rinke recalled in an interview in 1980 years “Wieczornemu newspaper”.
– Sure he was still the first round, when I studied his way to boxing. Then come to my colleagues cheering voices. “At” – shouted, with difficulty inhibiting abusive words, that hatred of the executioner led them to the mouth. I ja Bilem. For themselves and for others, for the thousands of people killed, for his insolent mouth.
Rinke szarżował like a raging bull. Palzer quickly gained respect for the new rival. On its face the surprise first wymalowało, then the appreciation for the opponent. The first fight is not resolved, Judges ordered the draw and immediately it was clear, would soon come to a rematch.
Additional bowl of soup
With a good attitude in the ring, Rinke could count on favorable treatment from the Germans, who were hungry for the next, interesting battles. In places like Mauthausen had to be combined, to increase their chances of survival. Counted in every detail. And it especially extra bowl of soup or a little lighter daily work.
For the rematch took place two weeks after the first fight, and this time he was already by far the Pole Mount. Sallow faces of the prisoners finally cleared somewhat. For them, it was like winning the World Cup. Rinke victory was also a practical dimension - after each victory to the barracks Poles were brought extra helpings of soup. No one is able to count – do not know, how many people have this hot broth saved from the worst. Additional bowl after doubling the daily mean because.
After another defeat, angry Palzer decided to change the terms and conditions. Next fight was to consist of six two-minute rounds. This time it was even less optimistic. – My colleagues looked at me with sympathy. Palzer now trains daily, the good eats, a ty? And I repeated, I win, although I was not so sure - he recalled Rinke.
Kapo had a plan. Fighting through six rounds of counting on exhaustion rival. If no technique, not by force, not clever, try to beat your opponent strength. It was June 1943 years, when the two fighters met again in the ring. Although at the end of the sixth round barely keep on his feet, both persevered to the final gong, and then the judge ruled the German victory on points.
The green grandstand rang shrill whistles and something extraordinary happened. Sprang to his feet in camp commandant Franz Ziereis: “Wy Durnie! After this fight he won Pole!”. No argument with the judges could not argue, and immediately changed their verdict, and the prisoners were again a few moments of genuine joy and pride. Rinke gave them two more such moments, because the war ended, twice defeated his rival camp.
Rinke remained in camp to 5 May 1945 years, soldiers crossed the gates of the U.S. Army. He was already, pardon the expression, celebrity camp, known to all prisoners, special considerations for the Germans. The hard work, there was no, for the rest of your stay in Mauthausen, cities in quarries, worked in the camp kitchen.
After the liberation, he returned to Bydgoszcz Rinke and continued boxing career and for the rest of his life revolved around boxing. Syn bow Edwarda, Janusz in 1969 he won the Polish Championship juniors. Coach was none other, as a father, who has trained a number of other excellent players. Came out of his hand, inter alia, two Olympic medalists – Henry Niedźwiedzki in Jerzy Adamski. This first 1956 won the bronze medal, Four years later in Rome Adamski reached for the silver.
In Bydgoszcz still remember Rinke. From 2000 year there is an annual International Boxing Tournament his name. A year earlier, the boxer died, aged 82 years.
Rinke and Czortek are not the only Polish boxers, When staying in a concentration camp must go to the ring, to save your skin. W Auschwitz-Birkenau Tadeusz Pietrzykowski fought about 50 walk, managed to beat among other professional champion middleweight Germany, Waltera Duningiema. But that's a story for another story.