In a letter read out to mourners during the funeral service at Warsaw's Polish Army Field Cathedral, President Andrzej Duda described Mirecka-Loryś as “a woman of courage and integrity,” and recalled her credo that “everything I did in life, I did for Poland.”
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki wrote in his letter that Mirecka-Loryś’s “life-long actions and commitment to the cause of her homeland deserve the highest admiration and praise.”
Mirecka-Loryś was laid to rest at the Polish capital's historic Powązki Cemetery.
Photo: PAP/Leszek Szymański
Born in 1916, Mirecka-Loryś studied at the Jan Kazimierz University in Lwów (now Lviv in Ukraine), where she joined the All-Polish Youth Academic Union.
After Germany invaded Poland in 1939, she joined the underground resistance movement, soon becoming the commander of the Women’s National Military Organization in the southeastern Rzeszów District.
In the spring of 1945, she became Commander-in-Chief of the Women’s National Military Union.
After the war, she resumed law studies at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, southern Poland, but was soon arrested by the country's communist authorities.
Released from prison under an amnesty on September 1, 1945, she soon faced the threat of another arrest and decided to escape from Poland.
After a time spent in Italy and subsequently Britain, Mirecka-Loryś, by then married, left for the United States in 1952.
As a Chicago resident, she was active in the National Party, the Union of Polish Women in America, and the National Board of the Polish American Congress.
For over three decades, she served as editor of Głos Polek, a publication of the Union of Polish Women in America. She also contributed to a Polish radio station in Chicago.
Mirecka-Loryś was the author of the second volume of The History of the Union of Polish Women in America and the book Retrieved in Memory: Notes on Family, Work, Friendship.
Her numerous honours included the Silver Cross of Merit, the Cross of Valour, the Commander’s Cross of the Polonia Restituta Order, and the Witness of History award from the Polish Institute of National Remembrance (IPN).
In 2016, to mark her 100th birthday, Poland's parliament adopted a resolution commemorating her patriotic services.
Mirecka-Loryś is survived by her son Jan, a historian working at the Polish Museum of America, and her daughter Ewa.