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Today in World War II History—October 4, 1944

Alfred Smith (Library of Congress)

Alfred Smith (Library of Congress)

75 Years Ago—October 4, 1944: British paratroopers land at Patras, Greece, and on Crete and Aegean islands.

US Sixth Army secures Morotai in the Netherlands East Indies.

Alfred Smith, 1928 presidential candidate and four-term governor of New York, dies in New York City, age 70.

Publication of Gwethalyn Graham’s Earth and High Heaven, which will be the first Canadian novel to hit #1 on the New York Times bestseller list.

3 Responses to “Today in World War II History—October 4, 1944”

  1. Yeoman

    I know it’s off topic for your blog (which I very much enjoy), but the photograph of Al Smith brings something to mind which I’ve been pondering and commented on, on my blog, from time to time.

    Al Smith, the great New York politician, died at age 70 on this day. Franklin Roosevelt, another great New York politician, was 63 when he died (granted his health was awful). Theodore Roosevelt (another great) was 60 when he died. Woodrow Wilson was 63 when he had his debilitating stroke and 66 when he died.

    I know that it’s the common belief now that nobody actually ages and we all live forever, but it’s really remarkable how in our current age we seem to keep turning older and older politicians. Sanders is 78 years old. Elizabeth Warren is 70. Joe Biden is 76. Donald Trump is 73.

    In contrast, in the current Canadian election, the front runners are all in their 40s, one candidate is 54, and the oldest candidate is 65.

    Just an observation.

    Reply
      • Yeoman

        It really has changed. It’s interesting to note that the Army retired or sidelined almost all of its senior officers in WWII who were over 50. There were a few exceptions, but not many. And that’s when the Army dropped the minimum years in service to retire to 20 years, which had been 30 before that.

        Reply

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