A 17-year-old East German orphan successfully slips through the barbed wire over the Berlin Wall to the West after being waved on by West Berlin police in October 1961. "This boy," wrote LIFE, "a ... more 
A 17-year-old East German orphan successfully slips through the barbed wire over the Berlin Wall to the West after being waved on by West Berlin police in October 1961. "This boy," wrote LIFE, "a 17-year-old orphan, was too dazed to say anything but 'Thanks, thanks,' as he shook the hands that had helped him." (Paul Schutzer—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images)

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Wed, Oct 3, 2012 10:00 AM EDT