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This Day in WWII 27 December 1939 - 1944


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TheCupandContainerIndustryAd-Dec1942.jpgThe Cup and Container Industry Ad - December 1942

 

1939: The Finnish 9th Division attacks towards Suomussalmi, recapturing the village and forcing the Russian 163rd Division to retreat in panic.

 

Elaine%20Shepard1.jpg *Elaine Shepard

 

1941: A combined services commando raid on German occupied islands off Norway results in 200 Germans killed and 16,000 tons of shipping destroyed.

 

1941: The Red Army continues its counter-offensive in the Kalinin area.

 

Elaine%20Shepard2.jpg Elaine Shepard

 

1941: Japanese bombers attack Manila, despite its claim as an open city.

 

1941: The Australian Prime Minister, Curtin, announces, "Australia looks to America".

 

Elaine%20Shepard3.jpg Elaine Shepard

 

1942: Hitler agrees to allow the retreat by Army Groups A and Don to a line 150 miles west of Stalingrad.

 

1942: General Giraud becomes the leader of French Africa.

 

AsbestosLimitedAd-Dec1943.jpg Asbestos Limited Ad - December 1943

 

1944: General George S. Patton's Third Army, spearheaded by the 4th Armored Division, relieves the surrounded city of Bastogne in Belgium.

 

1944: The Russians capture Gran, this cutting all communications with Budapest and trapping five German and Hungarian divisions.

 

1944: British troops reach Foul Point in Arakan, Burma.

 

Elaine%20Shepard4.jpg Elaine Shepard

*Elaine Shepard was born on April 2, 1913 in Olney, Illinois. She was a Broadway and film actress in the 1930s and '40s. She was also the author of "The Doom Pussy", a semi-fictional account of aviation in the Vietnam War.

 

Shepard's first film appearance was in the 1936 Republic serial "Darkest Africa", in which she played Valerie Tremaine, the heroine of the film. This was followed with a series of leading roles in other minor films. She then had several minor roles in major films, including playing a secretary in "Topper" and uncredited roles in "Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo" and the 1946 "Ziegfeld Follies". A more prominent role came in "Seven Days Ashore", a musical in which she plays the principal love interest for the band of sailors on shore leave.

 

Shepard also had some minor appearances on Broadway, including a part in the 1940 Cole Porter musical "Panama Hattie".

Elaine%20Shepard5.jpg Elaine Shepard

Shepard abandoned acting and turned to freelance journalism. She is best known in this role for her Vietnam War coverage, which became the basis for her 1967 book "The Doom Pussy", recounting her experiences with aviators in the early part of the war. This book is commonly cited as originating the phrase "the whole nine yards", though it is likely the source is older.

 

Her presence in the press party for a 1959 European tour with President Eisenhower provided the occasion for a libel suit against Dorothy Kilgallen. Kilgallen wrote that a female member of the press on the trip had had an affair with a member of the White House staff; Shepard, however, was widely known to be the only woman on the trip. The suit dragged on for years.

 

Elaine Shepard died of natural causes on September 6, 1998 (aged 85) in New York City, New York.

NestlesAd-Dec1943.jpg Nestle's Ad - December 1943

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