Łuczak in front of Kórnik Castle (2006)
Shocked and with deep sadness we received the message that Maria Łuczak
passed away a few days ago after a severe illness. She was only 61 years
For more than 35 years, from 1973 to 2010 Maria Łuczak worked in
the library of Kórnik Castle and officiated with dedication as
a curator of the von der Lasa collection. She became known to chess historians
particularly as an organizer of international symposia taking place at
Kórnik in 2002, 2006 and 2007. Many international renowned chess
historians who for the most part joined the Ken Whyld Association later
on already participated in the seminar of 2002 which has even been recorded
Some of us met Maria Łuczak for the first time personally on the
occasion of the seminar in October 2006 which she had perfectly prepared
and performed for our KWA group. This event at a "mystic place"
- as Kórnik Castle was perceived by many people - has remained
unforgettable for us and naturally has been documented in words and pictures
at our pages (www.kwabc.org/...).
Maria Łuczak with her lecture
at the von der Lasa symposium, 2007
The same applies to the next symposium in 2007 being still improved by
an excursion to the von der Lasa castle at Osieczna and further side-events
(www.kwabc.org/...). Maria Łuczak coped
excellently with this challenge too. But especially we would have to point
out her always kind character and obliging helpfulness which endeared
her to all chess friends who knew her. Without any doubt she was the "heart
and soul" of Kórnik Castle.
Moreover Maria Łuczak rendered outstanding services by the support
provided in the preparation of the Lasker biography. Her useful and selfless
help in this book project was particularly encouraging for the editors,
therefore the copy dedicated to the von der Lasa library at Kórnik
also represents a memorial for Maria Łuczak.
Łuczak with Michael Negele
The Ken Whyld Association and all chess historians worldwide have lost
a great supporter and kind-hearted friend. Our sympathies go to her brother
Jan and all other relatives. We who had the advantage to meet Maria Łuczak
in person will keep her in our memory and in our hearts.
Our association would like to support a further von der Lasa symposium
which would also be a memorial event for Maria Łuczak and her life's
Additional photos of/with Maria Łuczak: