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 Andree Marthe <I>Virot</I> Peel

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Andree Marthe Virot Peel

  • Birth 3 Feb 1905 France
  • Death 5 Mar 2010 Bristol, Bristol Unitary Authority, Bristol, England
  • Burial Long Ashton, North Somerset Unitary Authority, Somerset, England
  • Memorial ID 49457441

World War II French Resistance Figure. Known as "Agent Rose", she earned multiple awards for bravery and is credited with saving the lives of 102 Allied pilots. Running a beauty shop in Brest at the outbreak of war, Virot joined the Resistance and was initially tasked with distributing an underground newspaper. She was soon promoted to running a section of the VAR line, the Breton escape route to the Brittany beaches where downed aviators, along with some Special Operations Executive (SOE) agents, could be picked up for transport to England. Stationed at the end of the line, she was responsible for signaling the small vessels sent to receive the men; during her time in charge, no escapee was ever lost. Betrayed to the Gestapo in 1944, she was sent to the Ravensbruck concentration camp, and then to Buchenwald, where she survived meningitis and was pending execution when American troops liberated the facility on April 11, 1945. After the war, she worked in a Paris restaurant on the Rive Gauche where she met her future husband, John Peel (deceased 2003); following her marriage she lived in Long Ashton, England. Peel's autobiography, "Miracles Do Happen", was published in 1999. Her honors were many: from France, she received the Croix de Guerre, the Liberation Medal, the Resistance Medal, the Knight of the Legion of Honor in 1967, and appointment as Officer of the Legion of Honor in 2004. She was awarded the King's Commendation for Brave Conduct by George VI, and the American Medal of Freedom by President Eisenhower. Peel died of complications from a hip fracture. Of her wartime efforts, she said: "We were defending freedom. It's an extremely precious thing. It is only when you do not have it that you begin to appreciate how important it is".

Bio by: Bob Hufford


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Bob Hufford
  • Added: 9 Mar 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 49457441
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Andree Marthe Virot Peel (3 Feb 1905–5 Mar 2010), Find A Grave Memorial no. 49457441, citing All Saints Churchyard, Long Ashton, North Somerset Unitary Authority, Somerset, England ; Maintained by Find A Grave .