Yvonne was an early resister of the German occupation. In 1940 she took part, with Boris Vildé and Agnès Humbert, in the creation of a resistance group called the Groupe du musée de l'Homme, initially to help prisoners and aviators to escape. She was also present at the birth of the clandestine newspaper Résistance.
On 10 February 1941 the participants of the group were arrested following their denunciation by an employee. On 7 February 1942, the six men in the group were sentenced to death, but for the three women, including Yvonne, the sentence was suspended and they were deported to Germany. She went to several prisons before being sent to the camp at Ravensbrück on 20 November 1944. Freed by the International Red Cross, she arrived back in Paris on 14 April 1945 as part of an exchange negotiated between the Red Cross and Heinrich Himmler.
Yvonne was awarded the rank of Chevalier (Legion d'honneur) for her resistance work and was later promoted to Officier. She died in 1982 and was buried at Menglon (Drome), Rhone-Alpes, France.