Bill Rancic Defends His Wife Giuliana After Fashion Police Controversy: 'I Tried to Get Them to Release the Footage' 42 years, 2,191 covers and 55,436 stories from PEOPLE magazine's history for you to enjoy
- Cincinnati Police Investigating 'Circumstances' That Led to Endangered Gorilla's Shooting Death
- Read the Cover Story: Steve Harvey: From Homeless to Having It All
- Kit Harington Fights Sexism Against Men in Hollywood: 'I Like to Think of Myself as More Than a Head of Hair'
- Zoo Regulations Under Increased Scrutiny After Gorilla's Death
- See the First Photos of Harry Potter's Grown-Up Family in the Upcoming Play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
On Newsstands Now
- Matthew McConaughey: In His Own Words
- Jessa Duggar's Wedding Album
- Brittany Maynard's Final Days
Pick up your copy on newsstands
Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine
People Top 5
LAST UPDATE: Tuesday February 10, 2015 01:10PM EST
PEOPLE Top 5 are the most-viewed stories on the site over the past three days, updated every 60 minutes
- July 02, 1984
- Vol. 22
- No. 1
Still, Giovanna can be found regularly in hospitals, operating rooms and musty medical libraries in search of a story. Her recent report on Christopher Vollan, a child born with painful spina bifida (PEOPLE, May 28), prompted an outpouring of letters. Her first piece for the magazine in 1974 also involved babies and was about a Chicago doctor who delivered them at home, often in the city's poorer neighborhoods. Once Giovanna witnessed a child being born on a kitchen table covered with newspapers. This week she was in Milwaukee, reporting the story of Leslie Lemke, 32, a retarded man who is also a prodigy on the piano (page 26).
When Giovanna went to the Lemke home for the interview, she was greeted by Lemke's 84-year-old foster mother, May—who was dressed for the occasion in a ball gown. Lemke, who is blind, then made his way to a piano and played an original composition for his guest—a little ditty he called Giovanna From Havana. "I'd known about his story for years," says Breu. "But the trick was to do him and his foster mother justice."
Giovanna's interest in medicine was piqued quite by accident when her son underwent a series of operations to correct a birth defect. During long hours at the hospital, Giovanna discovered that "everyone there had a story to tell." Thus, her specialty was born.
Breu appreciates the drama of the operating room, but her compassion for her story subjects lasts long after deadline. She is still in touch with Baby Christopher, for instance, and reports he is doing fine and "is just adorable—I'd like to take him home."
Giovanna lives in Chicago with her writer husband, Joseph, and their children, Christopher, now 16 and fully recovered, and Eugenia, 11. What little spare time she has goes to the Chicago String Ensemble, where she is on the board of directors.
"Being a doctor is hard," says Giovanna, who should know. "The phone is always ringing, and you never have the weekends free. Come to think of it," she adds, laughing, "it sounds just like what I'm doing now."
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
The most buzzed about stars this minute!