Szabo, Violette, 1918-1945

Szabo was a half-English, half-French Special Operations Executive agent, whose life was told in the film ‘Carve her Name with Pride.’ Szabo applied to join the French Section of the SOE after her husband’s death in North Africa in October 1942.

She was a brilliant student and was selected to set up a network in Rouen to prepare for the Allied invasion. On 6 April 1944 she parachuted into Paris and traveled to Rouen to find that her chief’s cover had been broken and his photograph was on posters all over Rouen. Both of them returned to England but on 6 June 1944 Szabo was dropped in the Limoges area for another mission. This time she set out with ‘Anastasia’ (Local leader of the Maquis) to coordinate groups and alert them to action. After successfully completing one mission they ran into a Gestapo patrol and as they tried to escape she twisted her ankle. Szabo had orders to protect ‘Anastasia’ so she held off the Germans for as long as possible and allowed her companion to escape. She was sent to Paris for interrogation but did not reveal the identity of any of her contacts. She was sent to Germany with two other agents, Denise Bloch and Lilian Rolfe. All three were executed on 26 January 1945.

If you find an error please notify us in the comments. Thank you!