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WWII Code Breaker Buried in Nebraska with UK Military Honors 

OMAHA, Neb. — A 92-year-old woman has been buried in Nebraska with British military honors for a secret that she held for decades: her World War II service as a code breaker of German intelligence communications.

The Union Jack was draped over Jean Briggs Watters’ casket during her burial Monday, the Omaha World-Herald reported. Watters died Sept. 15.

The tribute honored Watters for her role decoding for a top-secret military program led by British mathematician Alan Turing, who was the subject of the 2014 Oscar-winning film “The Imitation Game .”

Pallbearers move the casket of Jean Watters for her funeral at the Omaha National Cemetery in Omaha, Neb., on Sept. 24, 2018. Watters was part of the super-secret team that broke the German ENIGMA code during World War II. CHRIS MACHIAN/OMAHA WORLD-HERALD VIA AP

Pallbearers move the casket of Jean Watters for her funeral at the Omaha National Cemetery in Omaha, Neb., on Sept. 24, 2018. Watters was part of the super-secret team that broke the German ENIGMA code during World War II. CHRIS MACHIAN/OMAHA WORLD-HERALD VIA AP

Watters was among about 10,000 people, mostly women, who participated in the Allied effort to crack German communication codes throughout the war.

She operated an electro-mechanical machine , known as a “bombe,” to decipher signals the German armed forces sent out from its sophisticated Enigma encryption machines. The effort at Britain’s famed codebreaking center, Bletchley Park, saved lives and helped bring an end to the war. But it was kept classified until the 1970s … (read more)

Source: Stripes

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