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Obituary: Odile Leroux

Long-time Reuters French Service Africa specialist Odile Leroux, who worked for Reuters in Paris from the late 1950s until she retired in the 1980s, has died at the age of 86.

Paul Taylor, Paris-based European affairs editor, recalled: “One of the great old Gaullist Francafrique buffs, she was a grand character in the newsroom with a tobacco-scarred voice like the Brest fog horn. She interviewed more African leaders than most of us have had hot dinners. Her hero in Reuters was Harold King, the veteran Paris bureau chief who I believe hired her.

“She was not married but had a bevy of nieces and nephews whom she raised on whom she doted.”

The funeral will take place tomorrow afternoon in Loctudy (Finistere), her home village. ■