Lauri Törni went through incredible transformations during his military career. He was enlisted into the Finnish army at the age of 19 and fought against the Soviets during the Winter War (1939-1940). Due to the military superiority of the Soviet Union, Finland lost that war. Months later, taking sides with Nazi Germany, the Finnish stood up and renewed their fight against the Soviets in the Continuation War. Törni received Finland’s version of the Medal of Honor (the Mannerheim Cross) for his bravery during the conflict.
In September 1944, Finland lost again but Törni decided to continue his fight by joining the German SS. He was captured by the British at the end of World War Two. Although the Finnish SS officer managed to escape from a British POW camp, Törni was arrested for treason in Finland and spent three years in prison. After his release, the Soviets launched their manhunt and pressed the Finnish government to arrest Törni accusing him of committing war crimes.
Törni escaped and managed to get to the United States where he was enlisted into the U.S. Army Special Forces in 1954. Due to his wartime experience the star of Törni, alias Larry Thorne, quickly arose. His military career ended in 1965 over South Vietnam where he lost his life in an air crash.
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