Top Left: Audrey Hepburn with her father Anthony Joseph Victor Hepburn-Ruston at their home in Linkebeek, Belgium, September 1934. Top Right: Audrey Hepburn with her father Joseph Ruston in Linkebeek, Belgium, 1933. Bottom Left: Audrey Hepburn and her father reunited in Ireland, August 1964. Bottom Right: Audrey Hepburn and her father, 1964.
Audrey Hepburn’s father deserted her and her mother, Ella Van Heemstra, at the beginning of World War II. Audrey wouldn’t see her father again for another 20 years until her husband, Mel Ferrer, was able to track him down through the Red Cross. Joseph had never attempted to reach out to his daughter; “I realized how much I cared about my father. I’d always cared, obviously. I just couldn’t bear the idea that I would never get the chance to see him again. I cursed myself for not having made more of an effort while he was alive, but his silence had me convinced that he didn’t want to see me.” After years of silence Audrey and her father were reunited in Dublin, Ireland. ”He looked the way I remembered him. Older, yes, but much the same. Slim and tall.” During their meeting Audrey realized that her father was an emotional invalid and they would never have the relationship she had desperately hoped for all those years. Despite their issues Audrey supported her father financially until the end of his life.