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Muriel Gardiner- Codename Mary

Discussion in 'Prelude to War & Poland 1939' started by GRW, Sep 20, 2021.

  1. GRW

    GRW Pillboxologist WW2|ORG Editor

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    Another great story that deserves a wider audience.
    "Muriel Gardiner's interest in the work of Sigmund Freud took her to Vienna in the 1920s to study medicine. There, the wealthy American became part of the underground resistance in the fight against fascism, helping to save countless lives. Her courageous actions would help to inspire a film for which Vanessa Redgrave won an Oscar. What were the events that shaped this extraordinary life?

    Early one November morning in a hotel room in Nazi-annexed Austria, Muriel Gardiner was woken by a sharp knock on the door.
    Opening it, she found a Gestapo officer demanding to know what she was doing in the country. With her heart beating wildly, the medical graduate politely told him she had been visiting the city of Linz as a tourist. More questions followed but the officer finally left.
    Had he investigated further, he might have learned that Gardiner was not who she claimed to be.
    She enrolled at the city's university to study medicine but, before long, the socialists were swept aside by a fascist regime that hunted them down.
    Rather than abandon the volatile country, Gardiner combined her studies with a new cause - aiding the underground resistance. "She never struggled with making the choice to stay," Mr Harvey explains. "It was just obvious to her to do the right thing."
    Known to the resistance movement as Mary, Gardiner owned three residences, including a small cottage in the Vienna woods. Here, she would host meetings and hide resistance members, including the Revolutionary Socialists' leader Joseph Buttinger - a man who by the end of the 1930s had become her husband.
    "She was leading this double life, really, of the devoted mother, the active student who was very sociable as well and had lots of friends across Vienna, but at the same time doing this resistance work," Ms Seigel says."
    www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-58399839
     
  2. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Well, thank You! Kph
     

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