Dionne Quintuplets 1939 Painting Five Little Sweethearts

From the day my father brought home Pierre Berton's 1978 The Dionne Years: A Thirties Melodrama I have been fascinated by the tragic life of the quintuplets.

Years later I rediscovered their story in the 1994 made-for-television mini-series, Million Dollar Babies with Beau Bridges.

Today I am still intrigued but disappointed to hear that life is anything but easy for the surviving quints.

Pin-up artist Gil Elvgren's 1939 painting "Five Little Sweethearts" of the Dionne quintuplets is going up for auction today in benefit of the two remaining quintuplets, Cécile who is reported to be penniless, and Annette.  Eighteen years ago, the surviving quintuplets were given $750,000 each from the Ontario government but, according to reports, Cécile's portion disappeared with her son.

All proceeds for the painting, which has been donated anonymously by the owner and is being auctioned by Toronto auction house A.H. Wilkins, will go to the sisters.  I hope that there will be enough made from the proceeds of the auction to support Cecile and Annette, who are 82, in some comfort for the rest of their lives.


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Read more on the National Post's story.

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