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This Day in WWII 22 May 1939 - 1945


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Boeing-May1942.jpgBoeing Ad - May 1942

 

1939: Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini sign "Pact of Steel" forming the Axis powers.

 

1940: British cipher experts at Bletchley Park break the Luftwaffe Enigma code.

 

1940: The XIX Panzerkorps (Guderian) strikes from Abbeville toward Boulogne, Calais and Dunkirk along the Channel coast.

 

Acquanetta1.jpg *Acquanetta

 

1941: Himmler establishes Norwegian SS on German lines.

 

1941: British blockade of Vichy France made complete.

 

Acquanetta2.jpg Acquanetta

 

1941: Heavy German air attacks on Crete sink the cruisers Fiji, Gloucester and the destroyer Greyhound. The Battleships Warspite and Valiant are damaged, but the Royal Navy breaks up German supply convoy.

 

1941: Fierce fighting continues as British troops begin to pull back from Maleme airfield towards Suda Bay in order to regroup and protect their main point of supply.

 

1941: British forces capture the last Italian stronghold in southern Abyssinia.

 

Acquanetta3.jpg Acquanetta

 

1942: The 6th Army and Kleist's Panzer's meets thereby pinching of the Russian salient Southeast of Kharkov.

 

1945: Montgomery is appointed as C-in-C of the British force of occupation in Germany and a British member of the allied control commission.

 

1945: 'Sugar Loaf Hill' on Okinawa is finally taken by U.S. troops after changing hands 11 times in the last few days.

 

Acquanetta4.jpg Acquanetta

 

*Acquanetta, nicknamed "The Venezuelan Volcano" by Universal Studios was a B-movie actress known for her exotic beauty.

She was born Burnu Acquanetta on July 17, 1921 in Cheyenne, Wyoming, and raised in Norristown, Pennsylvania as Mildred Davenport after she was given up by her biological parents. Burnu means "burning fire, deep water".

 

Acquanetta started her career as a model in New York City with Harry Conover. She signed with Universal Studios in 1942 and acted mostly in B-movies, including "Tarzan and the Leopard Woman" (1946), "Arabian Nights" (1942), "The Sword of Monte Cristo" (1951), and "Captive Wild Woman" (1943), in which Universal attempted to create a female monster movie franchise with Acquanetta as an ape. Acquanetta more or less ended her screen career in a weak Poverty Row sci-fi, "The Lost Continent" (1951), though she did appear though uncredited in "Callaway Went Thataway" (1951) and "Take the High Ground!" (1953).

 

She retired from movies in the 1950s after marrying Jack Ross, a car dealer. They settled in Mesa, Arizona, and she returned to a degree of celebrity by appearing with Ross in his local television advertisements, and also by hosting a local television show called Acqua's Corner that accompanied the Friday late-night movies. She and Ross had four children, and divorced in the 1980s.

 

Acquanetta5.jpg Acquanetta

 

Acquanetta also authored a book of poetry, "The Audible Silence", illustrated by Emilie Touraine (Flagstaff, AZ): Northland Press, 1974. In 1987, the all-girl band The Aquanettas adopted (and adapted) their name from hers.

 

Acquanetta used her celebrity and charming personality to support/raise money for a number of cultural groups and charities including: Mesa Lutheran Hospital, the Heard Museum, the Phoenix Indian School, Stagebrush Theatre, and the Phoenix Symphony.

 

Acquanetta succumbed to complications of Alzheimer's disease shortly after 4 a.m. on August 16, 2004, at Hawthorn Court in Ahwatukee, Arizona. She was 83.

 

She was survived by four sons: Jack Ross Jr. 45, Lance Ross 50, Tom Ross 47 and Rex Ross 43. She is also survived by her brother Horace Davenport, 85, a retired Pennsylvania judge.

 

Boeing-May1945.jpg Boeing Ad - May 1945

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