Wladimir Vassilevitch Petropavlovsky was born 29 June 1897 in Russia and, a young artillery officer in the Great War, cast his lot early with the White Volunteer Army and commanded Romanian troops in the anti-Soviet Intervention, then settled in France after the Civil War and apparently served in the Foreign Legion as an officer for a term, fighting the Riff in Morocco. Known as “Petro” to his friends which included American writer Emily Hahn, he fled Paris in 1940 and joined the British Indian 2/14 Punjab Regiment in the Far East as a 42-year-old 2nd LT and was later taken into the SOE as he was fluent in French, Arabic, Russian, English, Chinese and a smattering of assorted Yugoslavian toungues. Writing as W. Petro, he is best known for his swashbuckling 1968 memoir “Triple Commission.” Buried in New York, he is listed on his tombstone as a “soldier of the Tsar, France and England.”

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