Nancy Wake was described as being a drop-dead gorgeous New Zealander journalist. She formed great friendships with other journalists and the men were always very protective of her. Nancy ran away from home at the age of sixteen and taught herself a foreign language. Many believe that her life changed when at the age of four her beloved daddy abandoned the family. Those closest to her say she spoke about that event often in a way that showed that she had never gotten over it.
Nancy loved Paris and the French Riviera. Her first time there she was blown away by the richness of its culture. But even though she tried to play the role of being a giddy young thing, most of those who knew her describe her as the kind of woman who knew what she wanted and knew how to get it.
When she visited Berlin as a journalist she was completely appalled at the way the Jews were being treated and how everybody seemed to be mesmerized by der Fuhrer. She could not believe that they would just stand by and allow such atrocious acts to take place against innocent men, women and children. That’s probably when she decided that she would just have to do something about it.
She married Henri Fiocca in 1939 although his father opposed the union viciously. He hated Nancy because he thought she was trouble and undeserving of his son and his wealth. Nancy hated him right back.
When France was invaded it left everybody confused because they had been led to believe that they were winning the war. Nancy had the means to protect herself from the war, yet she deliberately chose to get involved early on with no fear of being caught.
She started working with a local resistance movement. She was asked to deliver small packages and eventually was trusted with more dangerous cargo like radio parts. All of these were used in the escape line that smuggled prisoners and soldiers out of France and into Spain to safety.