Berlin: One Last Run

Hans Weidner had been hoping for months to escape drab East Germany and make his way to the West. The odds were against him, for Weidner, 40, was a cripple on crutches who lived in the village of Neugersdorf, 115 miles southeast of the frontier of freedom. But Hans Weidner did have one major asset, the 30-passenger bus that he operated for the local Communist regime. It was an ugly thing, and ancient. Its chassis creaked, and the engine coughed; a cream-colored coat of paint could not disguise the welts and bruises of two decades of chugging service. In...

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