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Charlene Grimaldi
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    (January 25, 1978- )
    Born in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe
    Birth name was Charlene Lynette Wittstock
    Competitive swimmer for South Africa
    Married Prince Albert II of Monaco (July 1, 2011)
    She joined the University of Pretoria's swim club, but never took academic classes at the university.
    She said the 2008 Olympics would be her swan song as a swimmer, but she failed to make the team.
    Despite having lived in Monaco since 2006, at the time of her wedding her French was decidedly shaky.
    She is rumored to have had work done on her eyes, nose, lips and breasts.
    After the wedding, her first name was given an accent grave (becoming 'Charlène') to reflect a French pronunciation.
    Her marriage to a much-older royal bachelor led to Charles and Di comparisons.
    The New York Times noted that 'she endured the nastiness of the locals, who gossiped about Prince Albert's love affairs and predicted that he would never marry her.'
    She reportedly bonded with Princesses Stephanie and Caroline over their mutual difficulties with the tabloids.
    She is a global ambassador for the Special Olympics movement.
    She gets to use the 'Her Serene Highness' title previously held by Princess Grace.
    Karl Lagerfeld told her, 'You are going to be a style icon. You bring a breath of fresh air and modern glamour to Monaco.'
    Prince Albert said, 'I fell in love with her sense of humor, her simplicity, and the natural way she relates to people.'

Credit: C. Fishel

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