A World War II hero. Perhaps not one of the heroes we've specifically read about in history books, though I could be wrong about that. Marie left France for England, part of the Free French Forces, after France surrendered to Germany. She trained as a military nurse, then returned to France and served during the Allied Invasion. Later, she received honors, including the Cross, of which she is rightly proud. Marie still has the cross, pinned to her military uniform.
Italian by birth, Marie never felt fully comfortable in France. After the war, she joined her sister, "A real rascal," in California. There she met a really tall and skinny man. "I did not like skinny men, but I felt sorry for him. I asked him, 'would you like some food?'" Eventually one thing led to another.
She continued working as a nurse, and retired from The Huntington Hospital. Marie has lived in the recent decades, the past five or so, high on a hill in South Pasadena. Her tall skinny husband died some years ago, but she stays close to and proud of her children and grandchildren.
Walk around your town, folks. History books are all well and good, but there's nothing like meeting the real thing. (It helps if the proper tour guide is available.)