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Veronica Maclean (1920–2005)

Author of Past Forgetting: A Memoir of Heroes, Adventure and Love

Includes the names: Lady Maclean, Veronica Maclean

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Lady Veronica Fraser was a daughter of the 16th Baron Lovat and 22nd Chief of the Clan Fraser. She was brought up in Scotland at Beaufort Castle, the family seat in Inverness-shire. She attended finishing school and then came out in society in 1938. As a debutante she befriended the Americans Kathleen "Kick" Kennedy and her brother John F. Kennedy. With the outbreak of World War II, Lady Veronica served with an ambulance unit in France. In 1940, she married Lt. Alan Phipps, a naval officer, with whom she had two children before he was killed in action. After a whirlwind courtship, she was remarried to Fitzroy Maclean, another dashing officer, on whom the novelist Ian Fleming is said to have modeled the character of James Bond, and had two more children. After the war, the family lived first in Lancashire, where Fitzroy Maclean was a Member of Parliament until 1957, when he was created 1st Baronet Maclean of Dunconnel. Then they moved to Strachur, an estate on the shores of Loch Fyne in Argyll, where Maclean took on the constituency of North Ayrshire, Bute and the Isles. The couple traveled frequently, including to their residence at the Palazzo Boschi on the Croatian island of Korcula. Lady Maclean also accompanied her husband on several undercover spying missions during the Cold War. She became a popular and accomplished hostess, and wrote four cookbooks. She also published Crowned Heads (1993) on the political and cultural roles of the reigning royal families of the world, and her autobiography, Past Forgetting (2002).
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