Justin P. Liuba, the former head of Radio Free Europe’s office in New York, passed away on April 20.
Romanian President Klaus Iohannis signed a decree posthumously awarding Liuba the "Star of Romania," a national order in the rank of Knight, as a sign of the country's "high appreciation and gratitude for the essential contribution of promoting the values of democracy and freedom of Romanians, both in Radio Free Europe and at the level of the civil society from the United States, through which he distinguished himself as one of the great personalities of the Romanian exile.”
Born in 1924, Justin Liuba arrived in the United States in 1952 from Germany, where he had studied at Heidelberg University. In a dialogue with the writer and journalist Mirela Roznoveanu in 2018 Liuba recalled, “General Radescu, who had escaped from the communists, had arrived in America and called on all Romanians in exile to continue the fight against communism. And when I had the opportunity, with the help of international aid organizations to emigrate...I could go to Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Canada or America. We preferred America because General Radescu was in America and he called on us to be together, to fight just like General De Gaulle, in exile against the occupiers and against those who collaborated with the Nazi regime in France. And General Rădescu said, "You are welcome, come and organize and continue the fight against Bolshevism."
Liuba was employed at the New York office of Radio Free Europe in 1956 by late Romanian Service Director Noel Bernard. Years later, he became head of the New York office. He was also the president of the Iuliu Maniu Foundation, an organization created in New York in 1951 by a group of “national-peasants” in exile, to help support Romanians immigrating to the United States.
Liuba would have turned 96 in June.