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We reached our goal and are continuing to work hard on the Rohna: Classified WWII documentary! If you would still like to support this film, please click Donate. It will take you to the Donate Page on our website. THANK YOU! -The Rohna Classified team
We reached our goal and are continuing to work hard on the Rohna: Classified WWII documentary! If you would still like to support this film, please click Donate. It will take you to the Donate Page on our website. THANK YOU! -The Rohna Classified team
157 backers pledged $26,615 to help bring this project to life.
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Rohna: Classified - It's time to tell the truth

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A War Department Cover-up Scandal 

Over 1,000 US Soldiers were killed when Hitler’s secret weapon hit their ship in WWII. The radio-guided missile attack resulted in the greatest loss of life at sea by enemy action in the history of US war. However, the German assault on the HMT Rohna was erased from history, along with the men who died when the burning ship sank to the bottom of the sea.      

We have obtained hundreds of classified documents from both the US and British War Departments
We have obtained hundreds of classified documents from both the US and British War Departments

Survivors Were Ordered to Remain Silent

The US War Department declared the Rohna attack “Classified” ordering all survivors to remain silent in a cover-up scandal that left a thousand Gold Star families in the dark. 

Do you have 28 seconds? Click on play and hear what the survivors have to say... 

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1015 Heroes Were Killed in a Missile Attack and Then Forgotten

The families were never told what happened to their boys and their remains still lay at the bottom of the sea. In most cases, there were no funeral services or burials for the forgotten heroes. Six months after the attack, the Gold Star families received one short paragraph confirming the demise of their loved one in a telegram that also stated that there was "no information available." That was it; the boys just never came home.       

May 21, 1944 was the date that most families found out that their loved one died (Six months after the attack). Classified documents confirm that the War Department knew that no one could survive the frigid water temperatures or the rough conditions of the sea that night.
May 21, 1944 was the date that most families found out that their loved one died (Six months after the attack). Classified documents confirm that the War Department knew that no one could survive the frigid water temperatures or the rough conditions of the sea that night.

Families were Put Through Unnecessary Pain and Anguish

The US Government's first sin regarding the attack was the War Department's decision to mislead the Gold Star families giving them false hope for six months when they knew that the 1015 heroes died. The second one was that they Classified the attack indefinitely.      


What Went Wrong and How Did This Happen?

The reason for the cover-up and the secrecy behind the Rohna attack is a 75-year-old question that gets complicated. The HMT Rohna was a British transport ship with an Australian Captain and an Indian crew who were transporting American soldiers. The ship was considered unfit for wartime transportation and in poor condition. It was overcrowded, lifeboats were not in working order, appropriate drills and procedures for operating emergency equipment were not followed. We are still researching and investigating how and why this attack stayed classified even after the war was over as well as why families of the casualties were never told how their boys died.      


How This Film Got Started

I was moving things around in my attic when I came across 23 letters written by a young man who was killed in WWII. The soldier was Sgt. Joseph Pisinski, he was my wife's great uncle. Those letters led me to discovering one of Hitler’s secret weapon attacks that was covered-up by the War Department. It was the first time a radio-guided missile was ever used against the US and resulted in the greatest loss of life at sea by enemy action in the history of US war. This is one of the letters he wrote to his mother from training camp.          

This is one of 23 letters Sgt. Joseph Pisinski sent home to his mother throughout training camp. After training was completed he boarded the HMT Rohna and was killed in the Rohna attack on his second day of war.
This is one of 23 letters Sgt. Joseph Pisinski sent home to his mother throughout training camp. After training was completed he boarded the HMT Rohna and was killed in the Rohna attack on his second day of war.

The Outreach Program 

The ROHNA: CLASSIFIED team is on a mission to not only make a great documentary, but also to carry out the promise that the survivors made to find every family of the casualties and tell them the truth. Our Outreach Program, includes a "Casualty Search" page on our website. It is headed by Sunny Duncanson and Tracey Bannon whose uncle was a casualty in the Rohna attack. The Outreach Program also includes Rohna programs around the country as well as a Social Studies curriculum that teachers will be able to download from our website. Our goal is not only to get this story into the history books where it belongs, but it will also honor the forgotten soldiers and let their families know the truth behind this historic attack.   

Most of the casualties were boys in their late teens or early twenties.
Most of the casualties were boys in their late teens or early twenties.

Documentary Preview Trailer

The Rohna documentary will be told through the lives of 3 soldiers who were on the Rohna and one who was on the ship next to it. Two other subjects of the film include the German scientist who invented the the radio-guided missile and was smuggled back to the US and the commanding pilot who launched the deadly missile and asked his son to meet the survivors and apologize on his behalf. With your help, we will tell this story of fate, love, war and triumph. Watch our preview below:  

How We Will Use the Funds That We Raise

Rohna: Classified has been in pre-production for the last year. We have been researching, writing, working on an amazing Outreach Program, making contacts with family members of the subjects and historians, as well as filming and editing promos. We've completed a fundraising reel and premiered our website and Social Media pages. This first phase of fundraising will allow us to move into production as we continue to submit grant applications and pitch Rohna: Classified to networks. These funds will allow us to travel and film in the different locations throughout the country and to continue researching the US and UK National Archives.



The Rohna: Classified Team 

Risks and challenges

The greatest challenge we have with this documentary is taking on the responsibility of telling such an important story. The research involved with this historic event and getting the facts straight will not be an easy task, but we not only have archive professionals and WWII historians involved with project but also actual experts in the technology used for this historic attack.

We already have over thirty hours of interviews with survivors who give riveting firsthand accounts of the attack. It's also important to note that this film production is fueled by passion. All of the crew members are industry professionals who also have a family member who was on the Rohna during the attack. The team is 100% committed to seeing Rohna: Classified completed at the highest level as we work endlessly to search for the truth while telling a compelling story. We plan for the film to be completed in 2020.

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    A Sincere Thank You on Social Media!

    We will thank you for helping us to honor the forgotten heroes on our Facebook and Twitter page!

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    See ROHNA: CLASSIFIED before its release

    Receive personal access to view ROHNA: CLASSIFIED by internet streaming before its release to the public! This reward is contingent upon release date and future distribution plans. In addition we will thank you on our social media pages.

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    T-Shirt & Streaming of the Film!

    Courtesy of Harbor Designs, you will receive a high quality ROHNA: CLASSIFIED T-shirt along with a personal internet film stream before its release to the public! The film stream reward is contingent upon release date and future distribution plans. T-shIrts will be sent out over the summer and you will receive the film stream in late 2020. In addition we will thank you on our social media pages.

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    Remembrance Dog Tag

    Courtesy of the Rohna Survivors Association, you will receive a Dog tag with the name, rank and serial number of a Rohna casualty. You will also receive a T-shirt along with the personal internet film stream before its release to the public. All items will arrive over the summer except the film stream that will be emailed to you in late 2020 contingent upon release date and future distribution plans. In addition we will thank you on our social media pages.

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    Signed Rohna Memories Book

    Courtesy of the author, a signed book by Rohna Memories author Michael Walsh. You will also receive the early internet stream of the film. The book will arrive over the summer and the film stream will be emailed to you in late 2020 contingent upon release date and future distribution plans. In addition we will thank you on our social media pages.

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    Inscribed Rohna Memories Book

    Courtesy of the author, an inscribed book by Rohna Memories author Michael Walsh. You will also receive the early internet stream of the film and a T-shirt. The book and T-shirt will arrive over the summer and the film stream will be emailed to you in late 2020 contingent upon release date and future distribution plans. In addition we will thank you on our social media pages.

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    Rohna: Classified Bundle

    An inscribed book by Rohna Memories author Michael Walsh. You will also receive the early internet stream of the film, a T-shirt and a dog tag. All items will arrive over the summer except the film stream that will be emailed to you in late 2020 contingent upon release date and future distribution plans. In addition we will thank you on our social media pages.

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    Special Thanks in the Film Credits

    A "Special Thanks" credit in the film. An inscribed book by Rohna Memories author Michael Walsh. You will also receive the early internet stream of the film, a T-shirt and a dog tag. All items will arrive over the summer except the film stream that will be emailed to you in late 2020 contingent upon release date and future distribution plans. In addition we will thank you on our social media pages.

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    Rohna Memories and Memories II Books

    Both Memories books inscribed by Rohna Memories author Michael Walsh. A "Special Thanks" credit in the film. You will also receive the early internet stream of the film, a T-shirt and a dog tag. All items will arrive over the summer except the film stream that will be emailed to you in late 2020 contingent upon release date and future distribution plans. In addition we will thank you on our social media pages.

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    Executive Producer Title

    Receive an Executive Producer credit on the documentary. An inscribed book by Rohna Memories author Michael Walsh. You will also receive the early internet stream of the film, a T-shirt and a dog tag. All items will arrive over the summer except the film stream that will be emailed to you in late 2020 contingent upon release date and future distribution plans. In addition we will thank you on our social media pages.

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    Receive personal access to view ROHNA: CLASSIFIED by internet streaming before its release to the public! This reward is contingent upon release date and future distribution plans. In addition we will thank you on our social media pages.

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Funding period

- (30 days)