Honorary Unsubscribe

Randy Cassingham’s Honorary Unsubscribe Recognizes the Unknown, the Forgotten and the Often Obscure People who Had an Impact on Our Lives.
These are the people you will wish you had known.

Forgotten hero

George Vujnovich

During World War II, Vujnovich, the son of Yugoslavian immigrants, worked for the Office of Strategic Services, the forerunner to the CIA. In 1944, intelligence came in saying that more than 500 Allied airmen were being secretly hidden from the Nazis in Yugoslavia, and it became Vujnovich’s job to rescue them. He planned the entire operation, training three operatives how to act once they were parachuted in. “I had to show them how to tie their shoes and tuck the laces in, like the Serbs did, and how to eat like the Serbs, pushing the food onto their fork with a knife,” he said years later. Vujnovich’s Operation Halyard had to build secret runways for cargo planes in order to rescue so many men — yet be camouflaged enough to escape detection by German aircraft. The operation was so perfect, all 512 men were rescued with no loss of life, or even a single crashed aircraft. The operation remained secret for years, but when finally revealed to the public in the 2007 book The Forgotten 500, the U.S. Army awarded Vujnovich the Bronze Star — in October 2010. “He was a genius in the way he put the plan together,” says Tony Orsini, one of the men who was rescued. “He was a hero.” Vujnovich, who went on to sell aircraft parts for a living, died April 24, at 96.

From This is True for 29 April 2012


Honorary Unsubscribe Books

HU BooksThe Early Writeups from This is True's popular Honorary Unsubscribe feature are now available for your Kindle (or Kindle software for your smartphone, tablet, or computer) as low-cost ebooks.

See details on Volume 1 (covering 1998 through 2000), Volume 2 (2001 through 2003), Volume 3 (2004 through 2006), and Volume 4 (2007 through 2009).

The honorees truly are the people you wish you had known.

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