In Marin / FYI
they were single parents in the ’70s blending a dynamic family, but dig deeper and as
Andrew keenly notes, they shared similar
aspects of the turmoil their parents faced —
emigrant histories surrounded by silence.
Growing up with 18 family members in
a 23-room grace-and-favor home called
Frogmore Cottage on the grounds of Windsor
Castle, young Andrew Andreyevich Romanov
enjoyed an enchanted life. Besides exploring
the bountiful grounds, fishing with cousins
and painting alongside his artistic father, he
mixed and mingled with the British royal family, as chronicled poetically in his book The
Boy Who Would Be Tsar.
Among the encounters was a dinner with
Princess Margaret, who, dressed to the nines,
seated with him at a formal table, leaned
toward him and whispered, “You know why
you’re here, don’t you?” He was surprised to
learn he was among a parade of suitors in line
for her hand in marriage. As fate would have
it, it would take decades to meet up with his
Single, 17 and ready to explore the world, he
enrolled in the British Royal Navy, faced truth-is-scarier-than-fiction experiences at sea and
eventually followed a cousin to America, where
the Romanov name was changed to Romanoff.
He landed in the states in 1949 with $800.
Meanwhile, in the U. S., at the epicenter of
fairy tales known as Hollywood, a young Inez
Bachelin joined her father on the set of many
of the movies he worked on as an art direc-
tor. “My dad worked on over 100 films and
was nominated for an Oscar for Journey to the
Center of the Earth and War and Peace. Sort of
ironic,” she points out, “since I ended up mar-
rying a Russian.”
Storer spent her younger days in Catholic
school with the daughters of American
royalty (movie stars) like Loretta Young
Contemporary images: The
happy couple lives at the
historic Hotel Inverness.
Vintage image: Wedding
day at the Heart of Reno.