Eryk Kretowski was born in 1992 in Gorzów Wielkopolski, Poland. His parents names were Monika and Karol. Eryk lived most of his childhood in city of Poznan where he studied, where he met his best friends and his future wife. From the first time he bought himself a tank model when he was 10, Eryk was immediately interested in military, weapons, gear, vehicles, basically all things army.
Joining polish army was his dream. He enlisted in Police Land Forces only two months after his 18th birthday. He was assigned to the 51st Kresy Rifles
Infantry Regiment of the 12th Infantry Division. He was one of the best performing soldiers in his unit. But there was one guy who always was one step ahead-- his friend Damian Klonovsky. During one training mission Eryk couldn’t handle the pressure and got surprised by Damian. They got into a fistfight, during which Damian overpowered Eryk. After that, members of Damian’s unit began to call him “Strzyga”, a nickname that he disliked.
Eryk’s unit was assigned to NATO’s Chernarus Force (CFOR) in 2015 to perform stability operations in Eastern Chernarus. Part of the Multinational Battle Group East (MNBG East), based at Joint NATO-CDF Base Garrison on Utes Island, he would do patrols and work alongside CDF often in South Zagoria. Then, the infection came.
Kretowski and his squad was ordered to go to Svetlojarsk to respond to a massive horde of infected civilians on the streets. When he and his squad leader Strzyga got there, Eryk could not believe his eyes. Hundreds of people were running on the streets, some screaming, some crying, others trying to literally rip and bite at the healthy. They began to open fire on the infected, which drew a swarm. They spent all their ammunition on the crazed mob and were losing men quickly. Damien grabbed Eryk by the vest and pulled him into an apartment building, where the two of them would hide out for the night.
All night, reports from NATO became less frequent and more frenzied. CFOR commanded all surviving units to regroup at Gorka, and so Strzyga and Eryk headed there together after the horde had dissipated. The last two of their squad, snuck into the hills, determined to get away from the infected and to find other NATO members.