Richland, WA - We all have family stories passed down through generations. But a Richland woman's story is so incredible, it's being shared with people across the nation.
103 year-old Jeanne Gorce now lives at the Life Care Center in Richland, but her story begins in France where she was born and grew up loving dancing.
Jeanne met her husband, a Vietnamese pharmacist, and they moved to Saigon. But, their lives became clouded with darkness and violence as the First Indochina War broke out in Vietnam in the mid 40s. The First Indochina War followed World War II, but took place before the Vietnam War.
Japanese troops occupying Vietnam forced all Europeans, like Jeanne, to be quarantined. Her daughter remembers when her mother was even accused of being a spy.
"Since they were in control, they took her and the other ladies and put them in jail. And my father finally got her out of there," said Jeanne's daughter, Ann Vandam.
Ann said they lived amongst violence and death, and even recounted a time where she almost ran over a hand from a corpse while riding her bicycle as a child.
After French troops liberated Vietnam from the Japanese, Jeanne's family eventually moved to the United States. Ann says even after moving to the U.S., her mother received violent threats.
Jeanne's story is being featured in the Life Care Leader magazine, which is printed through Life Care Centers of America.
To pick up a copy, stop by 44 Goethals Drive in Richland.