From Political Prisoner of Communist Regime to American Citizen and Navy SEAL
Drago Dzieran was born in Poland while under Communist rule. His mother, Florentyna was a teacher and staunch opponent of Communist regime, while his father was a devout Communist who eventually became high-ranking Communist government official in Warsaw, Poland. Drago was never swayed by his father’s ideology and pressure to accept the Marxist/Communist ideology, and eventually was sent to prison for opposing Communist regime in Poland. After spending time in a Communist prison as a political prisoner for his activism against agains censorship, opression and deprawity of Communist regime, he immigrated to the United States in 1984.
Drago became a US citizen in 1991. After the first Persian War broke out, he enlisted in US Navy. He believes that it was his moral obligation to support in the best possible way his new Country that adopted him and gave him freedom.
During his Navy career, he was assigned to SEAL Team 2, SEAL Team 4, and a BUD/S instructor at Naval Special Warfare Center (NSWC) in Coronado, California.
Drago performed over one hundred combat direct action missions as an NSW Lead Breacher while deployed to Iraq in 2003, 2004, and 2005, where he developed new breaching methods and a specialized breaching charge that minimized fragmentation and reduced potential injuries to non-combatants on target. This breaching charge allowed SEAL assault elements a smaller stand-off distance from the explosive breach and became widely used by SEALs throughout Iraq, saving many non-combatants’ lives.
Dzieran was awarded the Bronze Star Medal with “V” Device for Valor, the Navy Commendation Medal with “V” Device for Valor, and the Army Commendation Medal, along with other awards and decorations.
Drago married his dream girl Rachel (Mrs. Drago) in 2007.
The wedding was at an old mill in Leonidas, MI. As someone who enjoys Spartan history, in addition to the location name – the wedding date is presumed to be the start of the Battle of Thermopylae – Drago was confident married life was off to a great start. Their three boys all got along well as they became one family, and welcomed the youngest two children shortly after.
Family life keeps them busy with the older boys off building their own lives, and the youngest trying to get out into the world sooner than Drago and Rachel are ready. Drago remains ever grateful for all the blessings that he has and that the family is able to enjoy here in America.
Following his honorable retirement after twenty years in the Navy, Drago Dzieran began a successful career as a software engineer. His tireless drive to expand his knowledge with software engineering made the transition smoother, but not necessarily easier.
Drago remembers vividly good friends who had challenges in the teams and with their own transitions out. He wanted to offer support for them and let them know that Brotherhood meant more than just working together in combat. Just prior to his retirement, he founded the Navy SEALs Fund – Brotherhood Beyond Battlefield to ensure that funds went to those in need, when they needed it. Being on the otherside, he began to understand the greater need for transiton support and TBI/PTS therapy and led the way with charity support for alternative treatment options.
“The state infiltrated every aspect of our lives. Learning the Russian language, for example, became mandatory when I entered the fifth grade. Even at that young age I was precocious: I openly questioned why we had to learn Russian when there were people who didn’t even know Polish fully—after all, the Russians were occupiers. [..] So, my teacher immediately pulled me out of class and marched me straight to the principal’s office. Once I was standing in front of him, he called the police.“
The Pledge To America, Chapter 2, Page 26
“Unfortunately for the Communists in Poland, Poles never bought into the narrative that the United States was evil. We acknowledged that these tactics were being used, but not in the United States. What was described in that book [about FBI, published by Communist regime] was exactly what the state security police and other government services were using in Poland at that time.“
The Pledge To America, Chapter 7, Page 75
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