Andrée Griotteray was only 19 when the Germans invaded France. She was just another young teenager, in search of fun and frivolity. Instead she found herself living in an occupied city, forced to work alongside the men who had invaded her country. Unable to stand by and do nothing, her younger brother Alain first set up an underground newspaper, urging readers to join the resistance, before creating his own resistance network. Andrée risked her life to help him in both endeavours.
Through her job at the passport department of the Police Headquarters in Paris, she typed up and printed copies of La France, and stole blank ID cards to be distributed to anyone attempting to escape France. She travelled across France, picking up and dropping off intelligence ultimately destined for the British and Americans, always fearless in the face of immense pressure. And then one day, she was betrayed and arrested. Andrée has been lauded by the French government for her bravery.
After the war Andrée was, very unusually, awarded four medals for her actions – the Médaille de la Résistance (1945) the Croix de Guerre with Silver Star (1945) and the Ordre national du Mérite with blue ribbon (1972) as well as the Légion d’honneur (1995) .
Translation of the Citation accompanying Andrée’s Croix de Guerre. 'While undertaking an important assignment as an agent in occupied France, Andrée Griotteray was arrested in Bordeaux on 17 July 1944 by police officers of the occupying forces and questioned for several hours. Displaying an enormous degree of sangfroid and exceptional skill, she managed to talk her way out of the charges being levelled against her and to extract from her accusers information which allowed her to work out the exact reasons behind her arrest and why her Resistance group had been targeted. Her mission accomplished, she immediately alerted the head of her group who put the appropriate security measures in place. Andrée Griotteray continued to carry out her underground activities uninterrupted until the liberation. This citation confirms the granting of a Croix de Guerre with a Silver Star.'