Janina Panasewicz, Seeker of Opportunity in Belgium, Died in Brussels Attacks

Janina Panasewicz, 61, was killed at that Maelbeek subway station.

WARSAW — When Janina Panasewicz lost her job in Poland 15 years ago, she moved to Belgium in search of work.

Despite living hundreds of miles away from her children and husband, Ms. Panasewicz, 61, remained deeply committed to her family, calling Poland every night to speak to her husband, a folk musician, said Wanda Gajewska, a friend of 40 years.

“He always left the rehearsals right before 9 p.m. and hurried back home to call his ‘Niunia’ over Skype,” Ms. Gajewska said. “That’s what he always lovingly called her: Niunia.”

A Polish nongovernmental organization, S.O.S. Bruksela, confirmed Ms. Panasewicz’s death on Tuesday, one week after the March 22 terrorist attacks in Brussels.

Ms. Panasewicz was among those killed by a suicide bomber at the Maelbeek subway station.

The news of her death shook both the close-knit Polish expatriate community in Brussels and in her hometown Wegrow, a rural hamlet in eastern Poland with less than 13,000 residents.

Leszek Redosz, the deputy mayor of Wegrow, opened a meeting of the City Council on Tuesday with a minute of silence to remember Ms. Panasewicz.

“Some councilors knew Ms. Panasewicz,” Mr. Redosz said. “When I proposed to hold a minute of silence, quite a few people in the room had tears in their eyes. It was heartbreaking.”

Ms. Panasewicz was also an avid cook who loved to experiment in the kitchen.

“I still remember her exquisite chicory dish she prepared for her name-day party two years ago,” Ms. Gajewska said. “She was always, always on the look out for new recipes.”

Ms. Gajewska added, “Goodbye, my dear friend. I will see you on the other side.”

In Other News

© 2020 US News. All Rights Reserved.