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This Day in WWII 5 January 1940 - 1945


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Nash-KelvinatorAd-Jan1943.jpgNash-Kelvinator Ad - January 1943


1940: Hore-Belisha resigns as Secretary of State for War and is replaced by Oliver Stanley.


1940: The Finnish 9th Division begins an offensive on the Raate road, which leads to the almost complete destruction of Russian 44th division in 2 days. The Red Airforce makes its first air attack on the Finnish GHQ town of St. Michel causing 29 dead.


Betta%20St.%20John1.jpg *Betta St. John


1941: General Bergonzoli surrenders the Italian XXIII Corps at Bardia to the Australians. 45,000 Italian prisoners and 130 tanks are captured by the Australians for just 500 casualties.


Betta%20St.%20John2.jpg Betta St. John


1942: 80,000 US and Filipino troops successfully complete their withdrawal to the Bataan Peninsula, along with 26,000 civilians, although food stocks are only sufficient to sustain 43,000 men for 6 months. The Japanese quickly close up to the first defensive position, which is based on Mounts Santa Rosa and Natib.


1942: German forces in the Crimea repulse a Soviet landing at Eupatoria.


Betta%20St.%20John3.jpg Betta St. John


1943: US Fifth Army is set up in Tunisia under Lieutenant General Mark Clark.


WAACRecruitmentAd-Jan1943.jpg WAAC Recruitment Ad - January 1943


1944: The last of four German blockade-runners from Japan are sunk in the South Atlantic.


1944: Koniev's 2nd Ukrainian Front extends the Russian general offensive in temperatures of -20°C.


Betta%20St.%20John5.jpg Betta St. John


1945: Australian troops land at Saposa to engage Japanese forces at Waitavolo.


Betta%20St.%20John6.jpg Betta St. John


*Born in Hawthorne, California on November 26, 1929, the former Betty Jean Striegler entered pictures as a juvenile. She made her film debut at age 10 in the unbilled role of a little girl who sings Marlene Dietrich's song "Little Joe" in the classic western "Destry Rides Again" (1939). She appeared in an "Our Gang" short and had another unbilled role in "Jane Eyre" (1943). Rodgers and Hammerstein took notice of this young, attractive singing/dancing talent and cast her in a small role in "Carousel" in 1945. When the musical team were ready to cast the role of Liat for their new musical "South Pacific" starring Mary Martin and Ezio Pinza in 1949, they had to look no further than the beautiful, exotic-looking Betta. A blockbuster hit come opening night, she did the show's London tour and met British actor Peter Grant while there. They married in 1952 and settled at first in Hollywood. The splash she made on the musical stage led her back to films. Betta made her adult debut in "Dream Wife" (1953) starring Cary Grant, Deborah Kerr and Walter Pidgeon. On film, she appeared in "The Robe" (1953), "All the Brothers Were Valiant" (1953), and "The Student Prince" (1954). St. John appeared in two Tarzan films and ended her career as the heroine of "Horror Hotel" (1960). She continued to act in films and television until 1965 when she retired.




Peter Grant (1952 - 1992) (his death) 3 children

At the age of 10 she was offered a small role in "The Wizard of Oz" but her parents turned it down.


Nash-KelvinatorAd-Jan1944.jpg Nash-Kelvinator Ad - January 1944

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