Germaine Kieckens (born 1906) worked as the secretary of abbé Norbert Wallez, the editor of the XXe Century, when she met and married Hergé. They were married by Wallez himself on 21 July, 1932. Germaine is described as being red-haired, energetic and determined. The two, who never had any children, lived a seemingly happy life until the beginning of the 1950's.
During the various mental crises Hergé experienced at the time, a split occurred, and in 1956, Hergé began a affair with the young Fanny Vlamynck (born in 1934) who worked at his studio. It took him a further 4 years to leave Germaine and 17 years to actually divorce her. As long as they lived, Hergé and Germaine continued to share their villa in Céroux-Mousty, staying there at separate times.