J. K. Rowling reveals her great-grandfather was a French WW-I hero

February 8th, 2009 - 12:02 pm ICT by ANI  

London, February 8 (ANI): British author J. K. Rowling has already enthralled people worldwide with her famous Harry Potter fictional series of books about a boy wizard, but this may be even more exciting to hear that she actually belongs to a real-life heroher great-grandfather.
Upon being awarded the Legion d”honneur by French President Nicolas Sarkozy at a ceremony in the Elysee Palace last week, the author revealed that her courageous ancestor Louis Valont had won the same award for his bravery as a French First World War hero.
She revealed that her great-grandfather was awarded in recognition of his bravery during the Battle of Verdun.
She said that Valont fought in the trenches of the Western Front, where he sustained a series of injuries.
A report published by the British newspaper Telegraph reveals that Valont was wounded and evacuated three times, but kept returning to the trenches to fight for the French army against the Germans.
The paper said that Valont was awarded the Legion d”honneur for his bravery when he was wounded while trying to bring supplies of grenades to French soldiers besieged by German troops at the Fort de Vaux, near Verdun.
According to the report, the soldier suffered such injuries as left him disabled, depressed, and with only 50 per cent of his vision in one eye.
“My work cannot be compared to the acts of these men who suffered from horrible injuries or sacrificed their lives for liberty and justice, the paper quoted J. K. Rowling as saying.
“But he is an ancestor and I have always been proud of him so I like to believe that he would be happy to know that there is a second Legion d”honneur in the family, and that the books written by his great granddaughter are very well appreciated in the country where he was born,” she added.
The report also revealed that details of the distinguished military career of Valont, who married an Englishwoman in 1900, were contained in documents held at the national archives in Paris. (ANI)

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