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[ Flying Legend Lindbergh Led Secret Double Life ]

Yahoo! News
Sat, Aug 02, 2003

Flying Legend Lindbergh Led Secret Double Life

Aviation legend Charles Lindbergh, the first man to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean,
led a secret double life with a German woman who bore him three children,
Germany's Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported on Saturday.

The paper said Lindbergh, whose solo flight from New York to Paris in 1927
earned him an undying place in aviation history,
met Brigitte Hesshaimer, a Munich hatmaker in 1957 when he was 55
but kept the relationship secret up to his death in 1974.

It said Hesshaimer's daughter, Astrid Bouteuil,
had more than 100 letters which she said were from Lindbergh
but had promised not to reveal the secret in her mother's lifetime.

Reuters did not see the letters and could not independently verify their authenticity.

Bouteuil and her brothers Dyrk and David Hesshaimer told the paper
they met Lindbergh periodically when he visited Europe
and knew him as Careu Kent but had no contact with his life in America.

In the United States, Lindbergh had six children with his wife, Anne Morrow Lindbergh.

Lindbergh's renown as an aviator was eclipsed for a time by controversial statements
in support of Nazi Germany and against U.S. involvement in World War II
but he remained one of the most famous personalities of the first half of the 20th century.

The kidnapping and murder of his infant son in 1932 sparked a media frenzy and was dubbed
"The Crime of the Century" by the U.S. press
although Lindbergh was an intensely private and even secretive man, according to his biographers.

The Sueddeutsche Zeitung quoted the children in Germany as describing their relationship
as close but overshadowed by their mother's insistence on keeping their father's identity a secret.

"He had a very warm charisma but he wasn't the kind of father to take you into his arms,"
David Hesshaimer said.
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The Spirit of St. Louis (1957)

Crime of the Century (1996) (TV)

The Lindbergh Kidnapping Case (1976) (TV)



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