Marc Andre Limot is the son of Walter Lichtenstein (later Limot) and Ines Wertheimer Limot. He was born in Paris on December 11, 1934; his younger brother Michel Claude was born on June 11, 1938. His father, the son of a traveling salesman, was born in Berlin on April 17, 1902. Walter studied photography and photo developing, and in 1922 Ernst Lubitsch hired him to take stills for one of his movies. Walter Lichtenstein then developed a career as a film set photographer and worked for several famous directors including Marcel Ophuls and Fritz Lang. Ines Wertheimer was born in Berlin on April 2, 1903. She and Walter married in Berlin in 1928. Ines later worked as a script girl for Fritz Lang in a 1932 film; she also appeared as an extra in the same film. Shortly after the Nazi seizure of power in 1933, Walter realized that Goebbels intended to use the German film industry to produce Nazi propaganda. He and Ines left immediately for France with only a knapsack. After arriving in France, Walter changed their last name to Limot. He continued to work in the film industry and also joined the Photo Agency Rapho. Together with Ines he established two photo shops in Paris called Presto Photo that employed a patented technique whereby a person could take his own picture using mirrors. Limot also took photo portraits of many of celebrities including Colette, Le Corbusier and Jean Cocteau. Ines' sister, violinist Blanca (Blanche) Wertheimer Fusenot, also immigrated to France in the early 1930s, and Walter's mother, Renate Hirsch, moved to Paris as well in 1936.
After the start of World War II in 1939, Walter, then 38 years old, joined the French Foreign Legion after being told he could either join the Foreign Legion or work in French military camps for the duration of the war. Following the German invasion, Ines and Renate fled Paris and drove towards the south of France leaving the two boys first in the care of the Red Cross and then with Blanca. After the armistice, Walter was discharged from the army near Marseilles in 1940, where he reunited with Ines. After Blanca found a passeur to cross the two boys into the Free French zone, Andre and Claude arrived in the Marseilles train station, probably in November, and reunited with their parents. The family lived in one room in a hotel on the rue de Capucines in Marseilles. Walter Limot unsuccessfully tried to get visas for his family to America though he contacted Varian Fry, and also possibly the Quakers and the Joint Distribution Committee. The family moved into a small house in the town of Cassis, and Andre attended school and catechism there until 1942. Then, after becoming ill, perhaps with tuberculosis, Andre was sent to a sanatorium near Thonon-les-Bains called "Le Jotty". He remained there for approximately six months and then went to Annemasse, a town near the Swiss border. Meanwhile his parents had escaped into Switzerland. Father Bertrand Jollivet took Andre across the border to Switzerland in the summer of 1942, and Claude followed in the late fall. His grandmother, Renate Hirsch, was arrested and put into a camp in Annecy, but she eventually also escaped to Switzerland. A cousin of Ines, Oskar Von Wertheimer, who wrote the famous book "Cleopatra" was less fortunate. Though, born Catholic, he was arrested in Nice where he was living on false papers and was deported to Auschwitz on convoy No. 69 from Drancy in 1944.
The family lived in the Atlantic House in Geneva. Andre attended the International School and also took Hebrew lessons. His parents worked for a Jewish relief agency, Secours aux Refugies, preparing food donations and receiving people. The Limot family remained in Switzerland until 1945. When they returned to France, the two boys stayed in La Forge, an OSE home in Fonteny-aux-Roses, while their parents tried to find a place to live. The OSE hired Walter Limot as one of several photographers to document life in their various residences all over France and Moroccan immigrants en route to Palestine. After the war, Walter established new photo studios in Paris. He passed away in 1984.