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Polish American Congress
Washington Metropolitan Area Division

 

Funeral Ceremonies for Col. Ryszard Kukliński

The mortal remains of the late Col. Ryszard Kukliński were sent on their final journey with honors befitting a great military hero.

Click here for funeral in Warsaw, June 19, 2004.   
Click here for gravestone dedication, November 11, 2005


   Photo: Kazimierz Chwiejczak   

Ceremonies in Washington

On March 30, 2004, the Central Intelligence Agency held a Funeral Mass for him at the Chapel of Fort Myer, Virginia, in the presence of his family, friends from Polonia, and many officials of the CIA, including Director George J. Tenet. Eulogies were given by Roman Barszcz (see below), CIA Analyst Rudy Mendez and Deputy Director of CIA James Pavitt. The last confirmed what Ryszard always said -- that it was Ryszard who recruited the Americans to help Poland, not the other way around. (photos unavailable).

George Tenet's statement to the press on Kukliński's death.

On March 31, the Washington Metropolitan Area Division held a Funeral Mass at Our Lady Queen of Poland in Silver Spring. Maryland (photo). Click here for other photos.

Eulogies were given by:

Roman Barszcz, his childhood friend - it was in his home that Kukliński and his family spent their last evening in Poland;

Jan Parys, former Minister of Defense who led Poland's first negotiations with then Secretary of Defense Richard Cheney on a US-Polish military alliance that ultimately resulted in Poland's membership in NATO. In that position, Mr. Parys had first-hand knowledge of Kukliński's contributions on that path.

Our Division member Alina Kozińska, soprano, appeared pro bono as the lead cantor at this mass.

The Polish Legion of American Veterans, SSgt. Jagiello Post 191 in Washington, conferred Honorary Membership on Col. Kuklinski.

Also on March 31, the Embassy of the Republic of Poland held an evening of commemoration, with speeches by Ambassador Przemysław Grudziński, keynote address by Zbigniew Brzezinski, and farewell by the Colonel's grandson, Michał.

From Washington, the Colonel's ashes were transferred to Poland, where they lay in state at the Military Cathedral of the Polish Armed Forces in Warsaw, awaiting burial in the Heroes' Alley of Powązki Military Cemetery. For the National Holiday commemorating the anniversary of the 3rd of May Constitution, our Division sent flowers to be placed next to the urn in the Generals' Chapel of the Military Cathedral. Click here to see photos.

Division President Thaddeus Mirecki has been asked to join the Committee for Honoring the Memory of Col. Kukliński, formed in Poland.

The funeral in Warsaw was held on June 19, 2004. Click here for a description.