A remarkable life — Count Robert de La Rochefoucauld, dead at 88

[via kottke.org]

You really have to read this to believe it.

Exerpt from Count Robert de La Rochefoucauld’s obituary in ‘The Telegraph’:

Cycling to Bordeaux to meet a contact who was to arrange his return to England, however, he ran into a roadblock, taken prisoner, and imprisoned at the 16th-century Fort du Hâ. His explanations that he had been out after dark on a romantic assignation were not believed and, in his cell, La Rochefoucauld considered swallowing the cyanide pill concealed in the heel of his shoe.
Instead he faked an epileptic fit and, when the guard opened the door to his cell, hit him over the head with a table leg before breaking his neck. (“Thank Goodness for that pitilessly efficient training,” he noted).
…Once there, however, he found that joining the rest of his escape line was impossible, as checks and patrols had been stepped up. Then the man harbouring him, whose sister was a nun, suggested that La Rochefoucauld slip into her habit. Thus dressed, he slowly walked through the city, eventually knocking on the door of Roger Landes, code-named Aristide, a bilingual Briton whom he hoped would take care of his return to England.

This is only one of a remarkable number of adventures, any one of which would, by themselves, make Rochefoucauld fascinating and a true hero. I fear we’re not making them like this anymore. I only wonder why there was never a movie.