Looking For Family

Young George Trofimoff was in Paris, working, but also working toward immigration to the United States. He did not know if his father, nanny, or the foster family that raised him had survived the war. He had no way of finding out. He had inquired at the Red Cross, but they were overwhelmed and no information was forthcoming.

George stayed close to the Russian émigré community in Paris. He felt more comfortable there. One evening in 1947, he attended a dinner gathering of the former cadets of the Imperial Pagan Cadet Academy of St. Petersberg. The dinner was served in the private room of a Russian restaurant and attended by twenty-five former Pagan Corps Cadets, all former Imperial Guard officers from different Imperial Guard regiments. practically all of them were distinguished generals.

One of the generals, General von Lampe, was sitting diagonally across the table from George. George remembered having seen him in his father’s home in Berlin on several occasions when he was a small boy. During the dinner, George noticed the General glancing over in his direction several times. Finally, the General asked George if he was a Trofimoff. When George answered that he was, the General jumped up, ran around the table and hugged George. Tears began running down the General’s cheeks.

“Goga, Goga,” the General exclaimed (this was George’s nickname). “Do you realize that your father is looking for you all over Europe? Do you realize that he doesn’t even know if you are alive?” George learned that his father and stepmother were living in a small village near Cologne. He was able to acquire a mailing address from the General and that night wrote his father a long letter explaining what had happened to him in the confusion of the last year of the war.

I write of George Trofimoff’s life 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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