Source: Deutsche Welle (8-14-09)
The victims are believed to have been caught up in the Russian army's offensive in what was then the German province of East Prussia in the final stages of World War II; a province split between Poland and Russia after the war.

The ceremony was attended by a group of Germans who fled the area, as well as Polish officials who meant to make the event a symbol of reconciliation.

One of those survivors, a 74-year-old Hamburg resident named Sabina, lived in Germany's easternmost province of East Prussia with her family until the last throes of the war. In the harsh winter of 1945 they caught the last transport bound for the west to escape the Red Army's offensive which was moving in from the east.