Veronique Peck, wife of Gregory Peck, died yesterday at her home in Los Angles. She was 80 years old. They were married for nearly 50 years, until Gregory Peck's death in 2003.
Veronique Passani Peck was born in Paris. She was the daughter of Antoine Passani, an architect and Alexandra Passani, a Russian artist.
Upon graduation from Marymount Univdrsity, she became a reporter for the leading French daily, France Soir. She interviewed leaders in politics and the arts.
In 1953 she interviewed Gregory Peck. After their interview, Peck flew to Italy to film "Roman Holiday" with Audrey Hepburn. Six months later he returned to Paris and called the newspaper to invite the beautiful young journalist who had interviewed him out to lunch.
In Peck's telling of the story, he recounts that he heard a loudspeaker announce “Veronique Passani, c’est Monsieur Gregory Peck au telephone,” and the noisy newsroom went silent.
When she picked up the phone he reminded her of their meeting six months earlier and invited her to lunch. When she hesitated, he asked if she had a boyfriend. She told him that she didn’t, but still wouldn’t agree to go to lunch. Peck was persistent. Their lunch at a Left Bank restaurant marked the beginning of a love story that lasted for over a half century.