George P. Burdell - The Man Who Didn't Exist

George P. Burdell is one of the most famous fictional characters in the United States. The story of this mythical man began in 1927 with a bureaucratic error that allowed a joker applicant to enroll a defunct student, George Burdell, at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Despite the fact that George existed only on paper, he was able to get a diploma, served in the American army, managed to get married, have children and even enter the board of directors of Mad magazine.

It began with the fact that someone named William Edgar Smith in 1927 received by mail from the Georgia Institute instead of one form for enrollment at once two. In the second form, William was going to add his friend George Butler, but at the very last moment he changed his mind and changed his last name to "Burdell".

William and his fictional George were enrolled in the same group. In addition to his homework, William also had to do George's assignments. So, through the efforts of William Smith, in 1930, George Burdell received a Bachelor of Science degree. A few more years later, George became a master of science. At the same time, no one ever saw George in the eye.

Over time, the institute learned about the phantom student. And some people liked this idea. The students, dedicated to the mystery of Burdell's origins, continued to support the rally. George's biography began to fill with new facts.

During World War II, unknown pranksters enlisted George on several fronts at once. For example, he was a member of the crew of the B-17 bomber and managed to complete 20 flights over Europe as part of the British Eighth Air Force. The deception was revealed only when he was awarded an officer rank.

When the war ended, an advertisement was published in one of the Georgia newspapers that George Burdell was to be married to a certain Agness. Half a century later, the local radio station congratulated Mr. and Mrs. Burdell on their wedding anniversary. George had a busy life!

From 1956 to 1958, George Burdell was listed as an Honorary Player of the Georgia Institute basketball team.

From 1969 to 1981, Burdell served on the board of directors of Mad magazine.

Burdell worked as a radio station employee, sang the baritone part in the audio show "Jesus Christ Superstar, " and George Burdell is listed as one of the director's assistants on the South Park cartoon website.

When Time magazine announced the launch of the online Person of the Year vote in 2001, George Burdell became the leader of the vote. Before George was removed from the list of candidates, he managed to get 57% of the vote.

George has a son, George P. Burdell Jr. He is listed as a curator of several student groups at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

In 2003, Mr. Burdell received a personal commendation from NASA for his contribution to space exploration.

When US President Barack O'Bama gave a speech at the Georgia Institute of Technology in March 2015, he jokingly remarked that George P. Burdell was supposed to announce the beginning of his speech, but he disappeared somewhere just before the event began.

On the grounds of the Georgia Institute of Technology, his name is immortalized in the name of the local student store.