Why CIA Spy Virginia Hall Has Captured Pop Culture’s Attention

She is the subject of three books and two new movies.

Virginia Hall is in the spotlight. (Getty Images)
Virginia Hall is in the spotlight. (Getty Images)
Getty Images

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Anonymity and spying go hand-in-hand. But one accomplished American hero, reportedly described during World War II as the “most dangerous” operative, is about to have her cover blown by pop culture in a big way, according to CNN.

Meet Virginia Hall, the subject of a trio of recent books and two upcoming movies. The only women woman to ever receive the US military’s Distinguished Service Cross, Hall did it all on her prosthetic leg with a code name of its own: Cuthbert.

Hall served for the British Special Operations Executive and the American Office of Strategic Services during WWII, CNN reports. In the French city of Vichy, she set up spy networks for the U.K., narrowly escaping when Germany took control of the rest of France. After joining the OSS, she returned to France and continued to outsmart the Gestapo, who, CNN reports, were intent on capturing the “woman with the limp. Hall lost the bottom half of her left leg in a hunting accident when she was 27.

“She is the most dangerous of all Allied spies,” enemies reportedly communicated, according to CNN.” We must find and destroy her.”

Hall was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross in 1945. After the war, she spent an additional 16 years in the CIA.

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