Lt. Col. Harry Pawlik: A classic American immigrant and hero

The political and economic alliance of open borders leftists and establishment cheap labor profiteers have laid a guilt trip on America and Europe to surrender our sovereignty to refugees who want only to eat away at the structure of the host nation to divide and conquer.  So-called Dreamers don't really have the American dream; if they did, they might be able to contribute a smidgen of what an immigrant like Harry Pawlik gave to the USA.

Via the Red River Valley Fighter Pilots Association comes the obituary of this remarkable immigrant, who passed away last August.

Harry Pawlik was born in 1929 in the province of Lower Silesia, Poland.  When German forces invaded Poland, Harry was captured and separated from his family.  He never saw his family again, and it turned out he was the only survivor.  Harry was sent to multiple concentration camps, eventually ending up at the Mauthausen and Gusen II slave labor camps.  After that he was shipped to the Western Front near France and Luxembourg.  Then (emphasis added):

… [in] December of 1944, he was liberated by a Polish detachment with General Patton's 3rd Army and 11th Armored Division and was later adopted by the Military Police, Combat Command A, 11th Armored Division, 3rd Army. Fighting alongside U.S. military forces at the age of 14, during the Battle of the Bulge, he was struck by shrapnel near his left eye but continued to travel until the end of the war. At the time he couldn't speak English, but learned within 3 months and aided as an Allied Forces interpreter.

After the war, he wanted to go to America, but getting it done was not easy, since there were 2.5 million applicants with the same idea.  Thankfully, Harry's military connections and well deserved recommendations enabled him to move his visa to the head of the list. 

Harry arrived in New York Harbor on September 22, 1947.  He set foot on Ellis Island with 2 suitcases and $120 in his pocket ($1 for each pound that he weighed).

But the story doesn't end there.  Read the entire article, but here is a brief summary showing his dedication to his new country:

  • He graduated in 1954 with a bachelor's of arts in science degree from the University of North Carolina.  After graduation, Harry attended Air Force ROTC summer camp at Tyndall AFB and was commissioned a 2nd lieutenant in the Air Force.  He went back to UNC to work toward his master's degree in education.  He held down four jobs to finance this degree.
  • While in the USAF, he piloted seven different aircraft, including the B-52 and the F-105 Thunderchief.  He flew 101 missions in Vietnam, and on one of those missions, his aircraft was hit by enemy fire 130 times.  He later commanded the 79th Fighter Squadron at Upper Heyford, England. 
  • His awards and commendations include the Silver Star, seven Distinguished Flying Crosses, two Purple Hearts, a Meritorious Service Medal, 15 Air Medals, the Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palms, and 28 other awards.

If only a fraction of the current wave of immigrants had the courage and determination of Lt. Col. Pawlik, maybe they wouldn't even be migrating, but instead fighting to make their own countries safe for their people.

John Smith is the pen name of a former U.S. intelligence officer.