In September of 1951, George Trofimoff received a letter from the Immigration and Naturalization Service to report for examination and granting of citizenship. He had served three years in the armed service at the time, and had recently been promoted to Sergeant First Class. He proudly appeared at the federal district courtroom in Raleigh, North Carolina in full Class “A” uniform with his two witnesses, as required, two veteran Master Sergeants, also in full uniform but with their WWII decorations and medals.
The federal judge interrupted a criminal trial in progress to address the military officers. He asked George a few questions to check his knowledge of the English language, wanted to know who the first president of the United States was, and then asked what the capitol of the United States was saying, ” and don’t tell me that it’s New York.”
Immediately thereafter, George placed his left hand on the Bible held by the court clerk, raised his right hand and repeated after the judge his Oath of Allegiance. George couldn’t help it. Just as he had done in the military graduation parade at Ft Ord, tears of happiness started running down his cheek. He was no longer a man without a country. He was an American!
I write of George’s life and career in my book: Observer: The Colonel George Trofimoff Story, the tale of America’s highest ranking military officer convicted of spying.
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