ORP Słazak and ORP Krakowiak
The Hunt class escort destroyers for a large part of the war sailed out of Devonport, Plymouth. Ruminski remembered the bloody Operation Jubilee on 17th – 18th August 1942 – the Dieppe Raid. The Krakowiak and Słazak used their artillery to support the Canadian landings. In about 15 hours of action the Polish destroyers fought air attack, shooting down four planes, and bombarded shore positions. Słazak rescued wounded Canadian soldiers, one British pilot and five German sailors, and herself sustained casualties and serious damage but returned to Portsmouth under her own steam. Her captain, Tymiński, against orders had gone back close to the beach at Dieppe and rescued 85 Canadian commandoes. In his retirement in Canada the Royal Regiment of Canada made Tymiński an honorary member in recognition of his service at Dieppe.
Two years later, on the 6th June 1944 Rumiński was on board ORP Słazak heading for the coast of Normandy and he reflected on his memories of the Dieppe raid:
As we head for the coast of France my mind goes back to the 19th August 1942 and the ill-fated raid on Dieppe. Once again I am glad to be a seaman and not a soldier, for on that day in August 1942 we became part of the terrible reality of war. We bore witness to the slaughter of brave men attempting the impossible. Was the coming day to see a repetition of that August nightmare? My ears are filled with the shouts and cries of that day. My eyes see the gun flashes and the enemy searchlights probing the darkness for their helpless victims. I know the gates of Hell are about to open for this armada of June 1944.
Source: Poles Apart: Polish Naval Memories of WWII by Martin Hazell and by material from Franciszek Ruminski