40th Anniversary of Grace Kelly's Death: A Deadly Tale in Monaco


Writed by - Andy Gocker
  Grace Kelly
Grace Kelly died exactly 40 years ago after a terrible car accident. © action press, ActionPress

On September 14, 1982, time stood still for a moment in the small principality of Monaco: he died the day before after a serious car accident Furstin Gracia Patricia (1929-1982) their injuries in the hospital. She will only be 52 years old. A look back at the life of the woman who first became a legend in Hollywood as Grace Kelly and then conquered hearts as the Princess of Monaco.

Breakthrough in Hollywood

Grace Kelly was without a doubt one of the most beautiful and talented actresses of the last century. Hollywood noticed her early on. In 1951, at the age of 22, she appeared in front of the camera for a small role in the film 'Fourteen Hours'.

Already her second film, alongside Hollywood legend Gary Cooper (1901-1961), helped Grace achieve her breakthrough: The cult western 'High Noon' (1952) hit like a bomb and made the then 23-year-old suddenly became one of the big stars of the 1950s. In 1955 she won the Oscar for best actress in the film 'The Country Girl'.

Vergöttert von Alfred Hitchcock

  Grace Kelly
Grace Kelly became a mega star in Hollywood at a young age. © action press, ActionPress

She owes her greatest successes to director legend Alfred Hitchcock (1899-1980). The master of suspense was struck by her unique beauty. For him she was the ideal type of unapproachable beauty and he hired her for the films 'Murder Call' (1954), 'The Window to the Court' (1954) and 'Over the Rooftops of Nice' (1955). 'Grace Kelly is a snow-capped mountain, and when the snow melts, you discover a glowing volcano underneath,' he enthused about his star at the time.

After Grace ended her film career, Hitchcock mainly engaged actresses who resembled her type - such as Vera Miles (93), Kim Novak (89) or Tippi Hedren (92).

'Interesting' men

  Grace Kelly filming in the 1950s.
Even as a young woman, Grace Kelly exuded an engaging elegance. © action press, ActionPress, ON RE

Gary Cooper, Cary Grant, Clark Gable, Frank Sinatra or James Stewart - Grace Kelly has been in front of the camera with the really big stars in her career. The actress also seemed to have had a soft spot for older men privately: 'They're just more interesting. I like people who know more than me,' she once said.

​​​​​​​Fairytale wedding in Monaco

Finally, in 1955, the life of the Hollywood star changed abruptly. Journalists arranged a meeting of the film star with the Prince of Monaco Rainier III at the Cannes Film Festival. (1923-2005). The bachelor was so smitten with the actress that he traveled to the States for Christmas and proposed to the Kelly family for their daughter.

The 'wedding of the century' followed on April 19, 1956. Grace and Rainier were married by Archbishop Gilles Barthe in Monaco Cathedral, and the American film princess became Princess Grace.

Reading tip: Her granddaughter, Camille Gottlieb (24), looks amazingly similar to the legendary Hollywood actress.

Your life in the Principality

The Princess gave Monaco a facelift. The couple had the children Caroline (65), Albert (64) and Stephanie (57). The former actress turned down nearly all offers for stage and screen, including the lead in Hitchcock's Marnie.

She performed 'befitting' tasks, took on charity events, became President of the Red Cross, founded a garden club and made flower collages, among other things.

Reading tip: At the 'Red Cross' ball this year, one thing in particular was in the public eye: Grace's daughter-in-law, Princess Charlène of Monaco (44).

The car accident

  Prince Albert and Princess Stéphanie
Prince Albert and his sister Stéphanie on the day of their mother Grace Kelly's funeral. © dpa, UPI, rf kde

Her tragic accidental death in 1982 finally made the princess a legend. Princess Gracia Patricia and her then 17-year-old daughter Princess Stéphanie were on their way home from their summer residence Roc Agel on September 13, 1982, when the Princess' car left the road on the winding Route de La Turbie for reasons that are not fully understood. The two women fell 40 meters down a cliff.

The princess was able to free herself with severe cervical injuries and a concussion. The Princess was taken to the 'Centre Hospitalier Princesse Grace'. On the evening of September 14, two months before her 53rd birthday, Gracia Patricia died as a result of the accident. Four days later, on September 18, the Princess was present buried by around 800 mourners in the Notre-Dame-Immaculée cathedral in Monaco.

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