As I lived with Colonel George Trofimoff in 2004 and 2005, he told me the story of how he felt upon enlistment in the US Army.
It was July 19, 1948, Hartford, Connecticut. He and two other young men raised their right hand before an Army captain and gave the oath to serve in the United States Army and to defend the people of the United States and its Constitution, “So help me God.” It was the first oath ever taken by George Trofimoff. To him, this was a promise to the government and the American people which gave him a chance to become a citizen and to live a normal life, to have a country, and not live the life of a refugee in exile, as before.
He made a promise to himself to fight with all his ability the evil of Communism and especially the Soviets and the USSR wherever they tried to expand. The phrase “so help me God” had deep meaning to George. His father, years before, had told him of the oath he had taken, the Oath of Allegiance to the Czar, back in 1913/1914, before the Bolshevik October Revolution in St. Petersburg.
To George, the day of his enlistment had this special meaning, because he was a descendant of an old honorable military family and a member of the hereditary nobility of Imperial Russia. He had been taught by his father that you lived and died by your oath and your allegiance to your country and its leader.
I write of George’s life in my book: Observer: The Colonel George Trofimoff Story, the tale of America’s highest ranked military officer convicted of spying.