Elizabeth Anne VanderPutten

Who Am I?

A Brief Biography

My family and childhood friends call me Betty (though Aunt Annette, dad, and a few cousins called me Betty Anne). Several colleagues and professional acquaintances refer to me as Eliz. To the rest of the world I am Elizabeth.

I am not Liz or Lizzy or Lizzie.

I was born at Mercy Hospital in Rockville Centre, Long Island on June 8, 1943 to John Richard VanderPutten and Dorothy Elizabeth (nee Easson) VanderPutten. The weather that day was "moderately cool with occasional rain." I've liked cool weather ever since.

In addition to my birth, other notable events that day centered on the war abroad and shortages at home. Here are some of those events that day, according to the New York Times.

  • Allied fliers pounded southern Italy, Sicily, France and Japanese positions on New Guinea; U.S. casualties were highest in North Africa.
  • Persistent rumors of an impending Allied invasion of Europe weakened the stock market.
  • Subway service was cut to the Queens to reduce equipment wear.
  • V-Mail was a popular form of communication.
  • Lunch cost 65 cents at the Brass Rail in Brooklyn.
  • The Radio and Television Institute on NY's Lexington Ave. advertised afternoon and evening classes.
  • The NY Yankees were in first place, one game ahead of the Washington Senators in the American League.
  • Bars on her Shoulders: A Story of a WAAC, Navy Nurse, and War Wings For Carol were published that day.
  • The Hotel Chesterfield on West 49th in New York advertised single room with bath and radio for $2.50.
  • Silver Fox Jackets cost $250 at Russeks on Fifth Avenue.

Few of these things made much of an impression on me at the time.

My earliest memory was of being wheeled up a New York city street on V-J Day, August 14, 1945 and people all around yelling and laughing.

To be continued...