ROMANOV FAMILY FRIEND: ANNA VYRUBOVA
Anna Alexandrovna Vyrubova, nee Taneyeva, a noblewoman at Russian imperial court, became a very close friend to Empress Alexandra and the entire Romanov family. It was said that Tsar Nicholas II and Tsarina Alexandra almost considered her their fifth daughter.
“Anya”, as the family members affectionately referred to her, even worked as a Sister of Mercy along the side of the Empress and her daughters, Grand Duchesses Olga and Tatiana, after the First World War began.
In early January of 1915, Anya boarded a train from Tsarskoe Selo to St Petersburg, and was involved in a very serious, near fatal accident. She survived, but was left crippled for the rest of her life. There is a myth that Grigori Rasputin, who was brought to see Anya shortly after the accident, was the one who saved her life.