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 Cecile Pearl “Pauline” <I>Witherington</I> Cornioley

Cecile Pearl “Pauline” Witherington Cornioley

Death 23 Feb 2008 (aged 93)
Burial Unknown
Memorial ID 24895814 · View Source
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Pearl Witherington served with the French Section of the Special Operations Executive during WW11.
Dropped into Occupied France in 1943, Pearl worked as a courier until D-Day. When it fell to her to take charge of 1,500 resistence fighters, in operations against the Germans.
The Normandy landings of Allied Forces had begun, and the work of the French Resistence in carrying out operational raids against the German forces was vital.
Born Cecile Pearl Witherington in 1914, in Paris to British parents. Educated in France and spoke French fluently.

In May 1940, when Germany invaded France, Pearl was employed as a typist at the British Embassy in Paris.
After France had fallen to the Germans, Pearl escaped and came to Britain via Marseille and Lisbon.
Once in Britain and after brief employment at the Air Ministry
Pearl joined S.O.E.
A very determined lady, who impressed all her instructors, with her cool determination and resilient manner.
Once in France Pearl worked for the 'Stationer' circuit, her duties as a courier involved taking weapons and explosives at night to various resistence groups.
Later Pearl organised weapons and ammunition drops for the newly formed..'Wrestler' circuit.
The Gestapo placed a reward of..1 million francs for Pearl's capture.
Pearl met her husband Henri Cornioley, and they were married in October 1944.

MBE Military
CBE (2004)

Legion d'honneur.

In 2006 Pearl received a Set Of Parachute Wings from the R.A.F. In recognition for her wartime parachute jumps.


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  • Maintained by: Paul Monaghan
  • Originally Created by: Nan
  • Added: 26 Feb 2008
  • Find A Grave Memorial 24895814
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Cecile Pearl “Pauline” Witherington Cornioley (24 Jun 1914–23 Feb 2008), Find A Grave Memorial no. 24895814, ; Maintained by Paul Monaghan (contributor 47155457) Unknown.