Opening Hours: 10am to 4pm, Wednesday to Saturday. 1pm to 4pm Sundays. FREE Admission

Jan Stangryciuk

Admitted to:

Nuneaton General Hospital. RAF Hospital Cosford (05/10/42).

Date of Injury:

03/11/1942

D.O.B/Age when admitted:

18/04/1922 (20)

Cause of Incident:

Crashed on take off in a Wellington.

Transferred to QVH:

04/01/1943

Injuries:

Burns to face, scalp and hands.

No. of Operations at East Grinstead:

10



IDENTITY CARD

This is to certify that the patient mentioned below and whose description is stated hereon is the authorised holder of this Identity card.


Forename:

Jan

Surname:

Stangryciuk

Service No:

794829

Nationality:

Polish


Awards/Honours:

---

Patient Unit:

No.18 OTU

Profession:

Pilot

Patient Rank:

Sgt

Death:

---

Age at Death:

---

Dr Rank:

Dr Unit:

Notes:

Stangryciuk was born in eastern Poland, and was living in Argentina when he answered an RAF advert looking for volunteers to fight. The ship that brought him and other volunteers to Britain took four weeks as it zigzagged across the Atlantic to dodge the Germany U-boats.

The Wellington he was flying in malfunctioned and crash-landed a few miles from base. When he regained consciousness, Stangryciuk tried to free his fellow airmen but was unable to before needing to get out himself, where he was helped by the local people.

Stangryciuk was one of the Guinea Pigs who was brought to East Grinstead after they met McIndoe on one of his tours of other hospitals.

He returned to combat after leaving Queen Victoria Hospital and stayed in England after the war and took his wife's surname after their marriage - became Jan Black.

Glossary:

OTU - Operational Training Unit

Further Reading:

'WWII veteran Jan Black recalls being badly burned in a bomber crash', https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Kdjjr0NnN4
'WWII veteran Jan Black explains how Dr Archibald McIndoe helped him recover from his injuries', https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nKy5eVqWkZQ
http://www.polishairforce.pl/gpc.html (in Polish)

References:

"The friendships I made with the Guinea Pigs will live with me for the rest of my days", Jan Black, RAF Benevolent Fund blog, https://www.rafbf.org/news-and-blogs/friendships-i-made-guinea-pigs-will-live-me-rest-my-days