PARIS — The remains of American-born singer and dancer Josephine Baker will be reinterred at the Pantheon monument in Paris, making the entertainer who is a World War II hero in France the initially Black woman to get the country’s highest honor.
Le Parisien newspaper reported Sunday that French President Emmanuel Macron made the decision to manage a ceremony on Nov. 30 at the Paris monument, which properties the continues to be of scientist Marie Curie, French philosopher Voltaire, writer Victor Hugo and other French luminaries.
The presidential palace verified the newspaper’s report.
Immediately after her death in 1975, Baker was buried in Monaco, dressed in a French navy uniform with the medals she obtained for her role as component of the French Resistance all through the war.
Baker will be the fifth lady to be honored with a Pantheon burial and will also be the to start with entertainer honored.
Holocaust survivor Simone Veil, one of France’s most revered politicians, was buried at the Pantheon in 2018. The other females are two who fought with the French Resistance through Planet War II — Germaine Tillion and Genevieve de Gaulle-Anthonioz — and Nobel Prize-winning chemist Curie.
The monument also holds the stays of 72 adult men.
Baker was a civil legal rights activist and a member of the French Resistance
Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Baker became a megastar in the 1930s, especially in France, exactly where she moved in 1925 as she was trying to get to flee racism and segregation in the United States.
Baker quickly became famous for her “banana skirt” dance routines and wowed audiences at the Theatre des Champs-Elysees and later at the Folies Bergere in Paris.
She became a French citizen right after her marriage to industrialist Jean Lion in 1937.
Throughout World War II, she joined the French Resistance. Amid other missions, she gathered information and facts from German officers she achieved at parties and carried messages hidden in her underwear to England and other nations, working with her star position to justify her travels.
A civil legal rights activist, she took aspect in 1963 in the March on Washington for Careers and Liberty together with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., who created his “I Have A Aspiration” speech.