On Dec. 22, Ambassador Mary Warlick visited the village of Pranjani in the municipality of Gornji Milanovac to attend the groundbreaking ceremony of a $700,000 reconstruction project. Mr. Igor Jovicic, State Secretary of the Serbian Ministry of Defense, also attended the ceremony.
The Ambassador paid a visit to the elementary School "Ivo Andric" in Pranjani, where a $700,000 donation by the U.S. Department of Defense (European Command) will be used to complete the building of the school gymnasium and to construct an annex with indoor toilets that will connect the two existing school buildings.
The village of Pranjani is the site of the Halyard Mission, the largest WWII Allied airlift operation. More than 520 Allied airmen were rescued through the generous help of the local Serbian population, who sacrificed their own lives to hide airmen shot down over Serbia. The locals helped construct an airfield that eventually allowed US aircraft to fly in and rescue the airmen.
As a result of this memorable episode from the two countries' shared WWII history, the US Embassy continues to develop its friendship with the village of Pranjani and to works towards our shared vision of Serbia as a stable, democratic and prosperous member of the European Union.