'Courier From Warsaw' Dies
Jan Nowak-Jezioranski, the Polish soldier who made death-defying trips between Warsaw and London during the Second World War to carry messages to Poland's government-in-exile, died in Warsaw late on Thursday.
Nowak-Jezioranski, born on May 13, 1913, spent his life fighting for a free Poland, first against the Nazis during World War II and then after the communist takeover as an exiled journalist and broadcaster.
His most famous achievement was as the "Courier from Warsaw," bringing news of the Polish resistance army's battles against German occupation 1939-1945 to the government-in-exile in London and the allies.
He was head of the Polish section of Radio Free Europe for 20 years during the Cold War, turning it into the main source of outside news for millions of Poles despite efforts by the communist authorities to jam the radio signal.
On his retirement in 1976, Nowak-Jezioranski moved to Washington, but remained active in Polish affairs. He was national director of the Polish American Congress and consultant to the National Security Council.
After Poland became fully independent in 1989, he used his influence in Washington to lobby for his homeland's NATO entry, which took place in 1999.
He returned to Poland in 2002. Government officials said he died on Thursday evening in a Warsaw hospital at the age of 91.