I had to write to you since, I have a personal interest in the story you brought to life. My aunt, Angline Nanni was one of the Code Girls. She joined the Venona Project at its inception and stayed with the project as an analyst until it’s conclusion in 1980.
She spent her entire career with the project — and she fits, perfectly, the description of the Verona Analysts and many of the Code Girls you detail in the book. She is from a small town (population 200), never married, never owned a car, never even needed a drivers license, and totally dedicated to her work. Her colleagues were her best friends.
At times following her retirement, I would drive my Aunt to visit these women. I never minded doing that. I never knew what these women did, but I knew they did special stuff.
To this day, my Aunt holds to her vow of secrecy and says very little about her work on “The Project”. She is now the family Matriarch and remains a bright-eyed and very active 99 year old, still living in the same apartment building at 17th and Massachusetts Avenue that she moved into when she came to Washington over 70 years ago.
Thank you so much for bringing us the story of the Code Girls and journaling the accomplishments of these women who, just like my Aunt Angie, earned the right to be called “The Greatest Generation” — They are that for sure.