Difficult Times of Grace Kelly's Family after the Actress Become a Princess

Before Meghan Markle left Hollywood behind to marry a prince, there was Grace Kelly, who despite becoming Princess of Monaco had to deal with her own problematic family.

Late Grace Kelly, later known as Grace, Princess of Monaco, was a huge Hollywood star well-known for her works with acclaimed filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock and for winning an Academy Award when she married Rainier III of Monaco in 1956.

As radical as her change of scenery from Hollywood to the court life of the small European state, her family background and scandals was something that kept haunting her until her tragic death in 1982.

Grace Kelly. I Image: Getty Images.

Grace Kelly. I Image: Getty Images.

HER PARENTS

Kelly was born into a very wealthy family. Her father John was a self-made millionaire who built an empire out of his brickwork construction company “Kelly for Brickwork.”

In fact, although he initially hesitated about it, John agreed to pay the sum of $2 million as a dowry so his daughter could become part of Monaco’s royalty.

Grace Kelly. I Image: Getty Images.

Grace Kelly. I Image: Getty Images.

Before that, Grace had to tolerate his father’s mockery as she pursued her dream of becoming an actress, to the point of ridiculing her in front of others. Her mother wasn’t any better, and in fact, she is said to have punished her three daughters often.

“Today, Ma Kelly would be arrested for child abuse because she did not spare the rod,” Grace’s sister Lizanne said once.

Grace Kelly. I Image: Getty Images.

Grace Kelly. I Image: Getty Images.

HER SIBLINGS

Grace’s brother John, known as Kell, was a talented rower just like his father, and he also had political aspirations, but his social status was seriously harmed when it surfaced that he had become romantically involved with a “drag queen” by the name of Rachel Harlow.

Kell’s own mother Mary was instrumental in sabotaging his plans to run as a Democrat to be major of Philadelphia, something that he naturally resented.

Grace Kelly and Rainier III of Monaco. I Image: Wikimedia Commons.

Grace Kelly and Rainier III of Monaco. I Image: Wikimedia Commons.

Grace’s older sister Margaret, known as Peggy, had to go through two failed marriages. She had two children with her first husband George Liddel Davis Jr., twin girls Margaret and Mary Lee, who ran away from home at age 18.

Peggy’s painful experiences ended up causing her a deep depression from which she never recovered, dying of alcoholism in 1991.

Grace Kelly and Rainier III of Monaco. I Image: Getty Images.

Grace Kelly and Rainier III of Monaco. I Image: Getty Images.

HER UNCLE

Grace’s paternal uncle George was a successful playwright who won a Pulitzer Prize in 1925. A couple of his works were adapted into films more than once, thanks to his talent for both comedy and drama.

But George’s career suffered because of his attitudes and perspective of life, being described as both a misogynist and an anti-Semite. He also had to face the disapproval of his family and friends because of his sexual orientation.

In order to be true to his heart, George became completely estranged from his social and familiar circle to sustain his long-time relationship with another man by the name of William Weagley.

Grace Kelly and Rainier III of Monaco with their three children in 1966. I Image: Wikimedia Commons.

Grace Kelly and Rainier III of Monaco with their three children in 1966. I Image: Wikimedia Commons.

MORE ABOUT GRACE

She was born Grace Patricia Kelly on November 12, 1929, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Despite the lack of support in her parents, Grace managed to make her dream from her teenage years come true and by age 25 she was already a major motion picture star.

In 1955, Grace met her future husband Prince Rainier III during a photo session. Following the advice of magnate Aristotle Onassis, Rainier proposed Grace in order to boost his global prestige and save his country from bankruptcy. They married in 1956 and had three children.

Grace Kelly. I Image: Getty Images.

Grace Kelly. I Image: Getty Images.

In 1962, Grace agreed to return to the silver screen for just one more time to appear in one last Hitchcock film, but she backed down at the last minute because the news weren’t well received in Monaco.

Grace was driving her own car around the royal family’s private retreat when she fell off a cliff and crashed 150 feet down a mountain in 1982. She died from her wounds two days after the accident.

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