MILWAUKEE, Wis. (WTAQ) - About 75 people attended a candlelight vigil near Milwaukee Sunday night, to pray for Poland in the wake of the plane crash that killed most of the country’s leaders. Foreign exchange student Alex Golec of Cedar Grove told the gathering to be strong and pull together. The 17-year-old Golec said Poland is the only nation that’s had to rise and fall so many times – and they’ll rise again. The vigil was held at the Polish Center of Wisconsin in Franklin.
The center’s president, Janine Adamczyk, said 9 percent of Wisconsinites are of Polish descent – and for them, it’s been a tragic weekend. Polish President Lech Kaczynski and 96 others were killed when their plane went down in Russia, on their way to a Mass for the 70th anniversary of the deaths of thousands of Polish prisoners of war in Russia. Many war veterans and relatives of those killed by the Soviets died in the crash, as well as most of Poland’s leaders. Golec’s father is an attorney in Poland – and she said he lost his boss and several friends in the crash. There were no survivors.