Oksana was born in Poland in January 1915 in the small town of Milicin Nowy and was one of three children born to Karol and Anna Antoneic. Oksana trained as a seamstress just prior to the start of World War II, when Adolf Hitler invaded Poland during September of 1939.
Sadly, not much is known about what happened during this time, one can only speculate on the horrors and heartbrek that Oksana would have experienced. From what is known the Antoneic family were persecuted and separated from each other either due to their political stance or for their military background. One thing is for certain is the horrors Oksana lived through during this time was something she did not wish to discuss and we may never know the full story of her early years.
But there was some light during this time with the Allies helping to support a war-torn Poland. Oksana was placed into a Displaced Persons Camp in Kassell, Germany with her husband Waclaw Jaceiwicz and here they welcomed their first son.
It was while at Kassell, the family sought immigration to either Canada, United States or Australia. Eventually, they were granted passage to Australia and departed from Naples, Italy on board the “Anna Salen” on the 22 May 1949.
Life was difficult for Oksana and her family when they arrived in Australia, apart from not knowing the language, the weather and the peaceful environment they found themselves in would have been quite foreign. And yet, Oksana embraced her new country with class and dignity.
Oksana’s passion for life and embracing all things new made her transition to Australia a little more manageable, but there were challenges. However it was the love for her family and knowing that Australia offered a better way of life for them all that pulled her through the tough times she faced.
To me Oksana, will always be my Nan, the person who loved me unconditionally, supported me, cooked my favourite foods, cared for me when i was ill, made me special clothes (without patterns of course!), and was always there for a hug when i needed it.
Oksana will forever hold a special place in my heart and the time we had together on earth was all too breif. But she lives on in spirit and is the heart of “Oksana’s Kitchen”, each bottle contains lots of love and we welcome you to our family!