Ms. Nancy Wake, An Australian born bad ass (sorry for the curse word, there is just no better adjective), was living in Marseille, France when Germany invaded in 1940. She scrambled to help many people escape via the French Resistance, where she first earned the name “The White Mouse” from the Gestapo.
Wake escaped to Britain, where she joined the Special Operations Executive, trained with them, and then parachuted back into the fight to become a liaison between the French Resistance and Britain. She was instrumental in recruiting more members, and led multiple attacks on Gestapo headquarters, at one point killing a sentry with her bare hands.
After her service, she returned to Britain and then back to Australia where she made several attempts at politics. Despite her military service and high decorations, she was never successful at politics, but her legend lives on. You can read more about her here.
3 thoughts on “Nancy Wake: The SF White Mouse of WWII”
Fact check: She was New Zealnd born, not Australian, and has very strong Maori lineage. Her family moved to Australia in her youth, but her father moved back to NZ. After her actions in WWII, Australian official wouldn’t decorate her efforts as she was a New Zealand citizen. She subsequently refused to donate her medals to the Australian War Museum.
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Thank you so much for sharing. The politics of it all make the story that much more frustrating
That is quite correct. Thank you for confirming. Her Maori heritage was very evident in battle. Fiery to the end, a very determined attitude from start to finish. She did not suffer fools or bad manners! Wonderful story.