ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The body of Ignace Jan Paderewski, the Polish statesmen and pianist, will be returned to his native land later this month, a federal judge ruled Friday.
U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III denied a motion to prevent the removal of the body of Paderewski, the first prime minister of modern-day Poland, from its grave in Arlington National Cemetery.
Mark Seidenberg, an Arlington resident and devoted fan of the famed composer, sought to block the move because he claimed Paderewski would have wanted to be buried in France with his wife and son.
But Ellis ruled Seidenberg had no standing in the case because he was not a family member and had no connection with Paderewski's estate.
According to Polish leaders, Paderewski said in his will he wanted to be returned to Poland when his native country was free.
Paderewski was prime minister of Poland after World War I and led the Polish government in exile in the United States during the Nazi occupation. President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered the body placed in Arlington in 1941.
President Bush plans to return the body to Poland when he visits Warsaw on July 5th.