Some men choose sides, others choose battles, and others fight regardless of the side or battle. One such man not only fought for three different countries, but also in three (and a half) separate wars. But don’t let that fool you. Though he fought for different sides, he did so against only one enemy.
Lauri Allan Törni was born on May 28, 1919 in Viipuri (Karelia), Finland. A sporty sort, he was once friends with Sten “Stepa” Suvio – the Finnish welterweight boxer who won the 1936 Summer Olympics.
With friends like that, it’s little wonder that he joined the Civil Guard despite attending business school. Upon graduation in 1938, the 19-year-old Törni joined the 4th Independent Jaeger (an elite infantry unit) Infantry Battalion. And just in time, too.