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This Day in WWII 9 May 1940 - 1945

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FisherBodyAd-May1943.jpgFisher Body Ad - May 1943

 

1940: The French submarine Doris is sunk by U-9 off the Dutch coast.

 

1940: Age for conscription in Britain is raised to 36.

 

1940: Hitler orders 'Operation Yellow', the great offensive in the West, to begin at 5:35 a.m.the next day.

 

JanisPaige1.jpg *Janis Paige

 

1941: The Luftwaffe launches a massive night raid (507 bombers) against London which causes many fires and cripples the rail system in the city. Liverpool has its 7th consecutive night air raid. Belfast, Clydeside and Humberside also suffer in a heavy week of raids. The RAF attacks Bremen and Hamburg, but with little effect.

 

1941: U-110 (Kptlt. Lemp) is forced to the surface by depth-charges of HMS Aubretia. A top-secret Enigma cipher machine is recovered before she sinks while being towed back to port.

 

JanisPaige2.jpg Janis Paige

 

1941: A British Brigade sized column (Habforce), moves across the Iraqi border from Palastine.

 

1941: A peace treaty is signed between Vichy France and Thailand, which cedes back portions of Indochina that had been lost by Thailand 40 years earlier.

 

JanisPaige3.jpg Janis Paige

 

1942: Another 60 Spitfires are landed in Malta by the aircraft carriers USN Wasp and HMS Eagle.

 

1943: The unconditional surrender of all axis troops in Tunisia takes at 11am.

 

JanisPaige4.jpg Janis Paige

 

1944: Allied air forces begin a campaign of large scale raids against German airfields and rail communications in France in preparation for D-Day.

 

1944: The Russians capture Sevastopol as Hitler finally changes his mind and orders evacuation of the city.

 

JanisPaige5.jpg Janis Paige

 

1945: The German garrison in the Channel Islands agree to surrender to British troops after five years of occupation. The surrender terms are signed aboard the destroyer HMS Bulldog, which is moored off St. Hellier.

 

1945: The German garrisons at Lorient, St Nazaire and La Rochelle on the French Atlantic Coast finally surrender. Reich Marshal Goring and his wife, children and staff, surrender to Brigadier General Stack, of the U.S. 36th Division, near Salzburg. Field Marshal Kesselring, C-in-C West, is captured by U.S. troops at the village of Saalfelden, in western Austria.

 

JanisPaige6.jpg Janis Paige

 

1945: A British naval squadron arrives in Copenhagen harbor to receive the surrender of the remains of German fleet.

 

1945: Stalin announces the end of the war. German forces of Army Group Kurland surrender.

 

1945: German forces in the Greek islands surrender.

 

JanisPaige7.jpg Janis Paige

 

*This joyous scene-stealer started out playing rather bland film ingénues but she never seemed to be comfortable in those roles - she had too much snap, crackle and pop to be confined in such a formulaic way. Born Donna Mae Tjaden on September 16th, 1922 in Tacoma, Washington, Janis Paige was singing in public from age 5 in local amateur shows. She moved to Los Angeles after graduating from high school and earned a job as a singer at the Hollywood Canteen during the war years. The Canteen, which was a studio-sponsored gathering spot for servicemen, is where she was spotted by a Warner Brothers talent scout, who saw potential in her and signed her up. She began co-starring in secondary musicals which often paired her with either Dennis Morgan or Jack Carson. Later she was relegated to rugged adventures and dramas that just seemed out of her element. Following her role in the forgettable Two Gals and a Guy (1951), she decided to leave the Hollywood scene. She took to the Broadway boards and scored a huge hit with the 1951 comedy-mystery play Remains to Be Seen co-starring Jackie Cooper. She also toured successfully as a cabaret singer, performing everywhere from New York to Miami to Las Vegas to Los Angeles. Definitive stardom came in 1954 with the feisty role of Babe in Broadway's The Pajama Game opposite John Raitt. Her old Warner Bros. rival Doris Day, however, was a bigger name and went on to play the role on film with Raitt. After a six-year hiatus, Janis returned to films in tongue-and-cheek support, all but stealing the movie Silk Stockings (1957) from co-stars Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse. She then grabbed her share of laughs in a flashy role with the comedy Please Don't Eat the Daisies (1960) opposite Ms. Day. Janis ventured on in summer stock playing such indomitable roles as Annie Oakley in Annie Get Your Gun, Margo Channing in Applause, Mama Rose in Gypsy and Adelaide in Guys and Dolls. From the mid-50s on Janis also tapped into TV with such series like "It's Always Jan" (1955), "Lanigan's Rabbi" (1977) and "Trapper John, M.D." (1979). In the 90s, among other TV appearances, she had recurring roles on the daytime serials "General Hospital" (1963) and "Santa Barbara" (1984). Married three times, she was the widow of Disney composer Ray Gilbert, who wrote the classic children's song "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah."

 

TRIVIA:

Measurements: 37 1/2-25-37

Chose her first name in honor of Elsie Janis, beloved entertainer of troops during World War I; Paige was her maternal grandmother's name.

 

SperryCorpAd-May1944.jpg Sperry Corporation Ad - May 1944

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