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July 1989: A visit to Provideniya

July 4, 1989

Walking on the main street of Provideniya, USSR, general manager Tom Busch encounters a young English teacher who recognizes his voice from the radio. “Everyone in Provideniya knows you!” she exclaims. Tom and son Steve are part of a Cub Scout field trip to the Soviet Union. They and the thirty others on the visit are the first ordinary Americans to visit the region, which is a militarized zone. The friendship-forging event is later recounted in the children’s book Friendship Across Arctic Waters by Claire Rudolph.