Yvette Lundy

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Yvette Lundy
Yvette Lundy 07520 (cropped).JPG
Lundy in 2014
Born(1916-04-22)22 April 1916
Died3 November 2019(2019-11-03) (aged 103)

Yvette Lundy (22 April 1916 – 3 November 2019) was a French resistance fighter during the French Resistance of World War II. She provided the inspiration for the character of Mademoiselle Lise Lundi in the 2009 film Korkoro , written and directed by Tony Gatlif. [1]

French Resistance collection of French resistance movements that fought against the Nazi German occupation of France and against the collaborationist Vichy régime

The French Resistance was the collection of French movements that fought against the Nazi German occupation of France and the collaborationist Vichy régime during the Second World War. Resistance cells were small groups of armed men and women, who, in addition to their guerrilla warfare activities, were also publishers of underground newspapers, providers of first-hand intelligence information, and maintainers of escape networks that helped Allied soldiers and airmen trapped behind enemy lines. The men and women of the Resistance came from all economic levels and political leanings of French society, including émigrés, academics, students, aristocrats, conservative Roman Catholics, and also citizens from the ranks of liberals, anarchists and communists.

World War II 1939–1945, between Axis and Allies

World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from more than 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 70 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.

<i>Korkoro</i> 2010 film by Tony Gatlif

Korkoro is a 2009 French drama film written and directed by Tony Gatlif, starring French actors Marc Lavoine, Marie-Josée Croze and James Thiérrée. The film's cast were of many nationalities such as Albanian, Kosovar, Georgian, Serbian, French, Norwegian, and nine Romani people Gatlif recruited in Transylvania.


Early life

She was born on 22 April 1916 in Oger, France; [2] she was the youngest of seven siblings [1] [3] in a family of agricultural workers originating from the Reims area. [4] In 1938 she began working as a teacher at Gionges, and as secretary to the mayor there. [5] [6] During May 1940, as the Battle of France began, she fled the area, but returned two months later. [4]

Oger, Marne Part of Blancs-Coteaux in Grand Est, France

Oger is a former commune in the Marne department in north-eastern France. On 1 January 2018, it was merged into the new commune of Blancs-Coteaux.

Reims Subprefecture and commune in Grand Est, France

Reims is the most populous city in the Marne department, in the Grand Est region of France. Its population in 2013 was of 182,592 in the city proper (commune) and 317,611 in the metropolitan area. The city lies 129 km (80 mi) east-northeast of Paris. Its primary river, the Vesle, is a tributary of the Aisne.

Gionges Part of Blancs-Coteaux in Grand Est, France

Gionges is a former commune in the Marne department in north-eastern France. On 1 January 2018, it was merged into the new commune of Blancs-Coteaux.

Wartime activities

As a Resistance worker in occupied France, Lundy began supplying forged official documents to escapees from the camp at Bazancourt and to Jewish families. [4] [5] She assisted the Communist Marcel Nautré, [4] and others involved in the Possum network, [3] in avoiding detection by the authorities, as well as providing shelter at her brother Georges' farm for Free French fighters parachuted into the region. [3] [6]

Bazancourt, Marne Commune in Grand Est, France

Bazancourt is a commune in the Marne department in northeastern France.

Free France Government-in-exile led by Charles de Gaulle during the Second World War

Free France and its Free French Forces were the government-in-exile led by Charles de Gaulle during the Second World War and its military forces, that continued to fight against the Axis powers as one of the Allies after the fall of France. Set up in London in June 1940, it organised and supported the Resistance in occupied France.

Lundy was arrested on 19 June 1944 in her classroom at Gionges and was interrogated by the Gestapo at Châlons-sur-Marne, where she was subsequently imprisoned. [4] [5] [6] During the interrogation, to protect her brothers and sister (René, Lucien, Georges and Berthe) who were also working for the resistance, she pretended to be an only child. From there she was taken to Romainville, [4] and, on 18 July 1944, was deported, first to Saarbrücken Neue Bremm, [5] [6] and then to the Ravensbrück concentration camp (prisoner number 47360). [3] [5] [6] On 16 November of the same year, she was transferred to the Schlieben subcamp of Buchenwald. [3] [5] Her sister Berthe was also imprisoned in Germany and her elder brother Lucien was interned at Auschwitz concentration camp; [3] [7] they both survived, but her other brother, Georges, did not and died at Auschwitz-Birkenau in 1945. [3] [6]

Gestapo official secret police of Nazi Germany

The Geheime Staatspolizei, abbreviated Gestapo, was the official secret police of Nazi Germany and German-occupied Europe.

Romainville Commune in Île-de-France, France

Romainville is a commune in the eastern suburbs of Paris, France. It is located 7.2 km (4.5 mi) from the center of Paris.

Saarbrücken Place in Saarland, Germany

Saarbrücken is the capital and largest city of the state of Saarland, Germany. Saarbrücken is Saarland's administrative, commercial and cultural centre and is next to the French border.

Yvette Lundy was freed from Schlieben by the Red Army on 20 [8] or 21 [5] April 1945 and, after a march of some 200 kilometres to Halle, was flown back to France, arriving at le Bourget on 8 May 1945. [4]

Red Army Soviet army and air force from 1917–1946

The Workers' and Peasants' Red Army, frequently shortened to Red Army, was the army and the air force of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic and, after 1922, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. The army was established immediately after the 1917 October Revolution. The Bolsheviks raised an army to oppose the military confederations of their adversaries during the Russian Civil War. Beginning in February 1946, the Red Army, along with the Soviet Navy, embodied the main component of the Soviet Armed Forces; taking the official name of "Soviet Army", until its dissolution in December 1991. The former official name Red Army continued to be used as a nickname by both sides throughout the Cold War.

Halle (Saale) Place in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany

Halle (Saale) is the largest city of the German state of Saxony-Anhalt, the fifth largest city in the area of former East Germany after (East) Berlin, Leipzig, Dresden and Chemnitz, as well as the 31st largest city of Germany, and with around 239,000 inhabitants, it is slightly more populous than the state capital of Magdeburg. Together with Leipzig, the largest city of Saxony, Halle forms the polycentric Leipzig-Halle conurbation. Between the two cities, in Schkeuditz, lies Leipzig/Halle International Airport. The Leipzig-Halle conurbation is at the heart of the larger Central German Metropolitan Region.


Lundy remained silent about her war experiences until 1959, [3] [6] for her family's sake. [6] After that date, she began going into schools to share her testimony. [3] [6] Her visits proved extremely popular with pupils. [8]

Lundy's memoir Le Fil de l'araignée ( ISBN   979-1090911017), co-written with Laurence Barbarot-Boisson, was published in 2012. [3] [9]

At the age of 101, she was awarded the honour of Grand Officier de la Légion d'honneur. [6] [8] She died on 3 November 2019 at Epernay, aged 103. [5] [6] [10]

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Parts of this article are translated from the article in the French Wikipedia


  1. 1 2 "Yvette Lundy, 101 ans et toujours résistante". L'Express (in French). 19 May 2017. Retrieved 23 April 2018.
  2. "Yvette Lundy, résistante who helped the Possum escape network but was incarcerated at Ravensbrück – obituary". The Daily Telegraph. 5 November 2019. Retrieved 6 November 2019.
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Willsher, Kim (4 November 2019). "Yvette Lundy, French resistance heroine, dies aged 103". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 November 2019.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 "Yvette Lundy, déportée à Ravensbrück, une grande figure de la Résistance marnaise". cndp.fr (in French). Retrieved 23 April 2018.
  5. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Turpin, Eric (3 November 2019). "Mort d'Yvette Lundy, à l'âge de 103 ans, une grande figure de la résistance". France Bleu (in French). Retrieved 6 November 2019.
  6. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 "Yvette Lundy, figure de la Résistance, est morte". Le Monde (in French). Le Monde and AFP. 3 November 2019. Retrieved 6 November 2019.
  7. "Un Français Libre parmi 53321". Les Français Libres. Retrieved 23 April 2018.
  8. 1 2 3 "Yvette Lundy, 101 ans et toujours résistante". La Croix (in French). 19 May 2017. Retrieved 23 April 2018.
  9. "Le Fil de l'araignée". Les Editions Border Line (in French). Retrieved 23 April 2018.
  10. "'Great lady of the French Resistance' dies at 103". 3 November 2019 via www.bbc.co.uk.