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Lucie Aubrac (1912–2007)

Author of Outwitting the Gestapo

Includes the names: Aubrac Lucie, Lucie Aubrac; Translated by Konrad Bieber

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Lucie Aubrac was born Lucie Bernard in Mâcon, Burgundy, to a modest family of French winegrowers. She became a history teacher in Lyon and, with her husband Raymond Samuel, helped found an early French Resistance group, Libération-Sud, following the German invasion of France in World War II. In October 1943, Lucie's husband, who was Jewish, was arrested by the French Milice and handed over to the Gestapo. He was sentenced to death but she saved his life by using a clever ploy to get him transferred from the prison and then, with her Resistance comrades, audaciously intercepted the truck transporting him, machine gun in hand, to free him. She was six months pregnant with her second child at the time. The family hid in the French countryside before escaping to London in 1944 and joining the Free French government-in-exile. As Aubrac was the last alias they had used in France, they kept the name. After the war, Lucie Aubrac served on a consultative committee of the French Provisional Government. She eventually returned to teaching and regularly visited schools to provide her own testimony as a survivor and historian of the war. She also became active in the campaign for human rights. She published her memoirs in 1984 under the title Ils partiront dans l'ivresse (in English, Outwitting the Gestapo). La Résistance expliquée à mes petits-enfants (The Resistance Explained to my Grandchildren) was published in 2000. The 1997 romantic film Lucie Aubrac was loosely based on the events surrounding her husband's rescue.
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