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Around Town
RUMC Receives AHA - AHS Gold Plus Achievement Award
Colts Neck Cares 1st Annual Benefit for Bella
Summer Guide 2014 - Out & About
Ask The Experts
Ask The Experts: Dr. John M. Young
Ask The Expert - Carolyn Welsh
AskThe Expert - Pauline Poyner
Bay Wellness
Bay Wellness - Making Weight Loss a Family Affair
Bay Wellness - Welcome to our newest issue
Bay Wellness - Genital Warts
Best Bets
The Guide 2014 - Architects Studio Inc. Northeast
The Guide 2014 - Grecian Pools
The Guide 2014 - Grace Sharpe
Black Book
Cover Story
Acing It All - Michael Lippens
Spirits For The Spirit: The Legacy of Laird & Co.
JoAnn Kairys
Daytripper
Day Tripper - Mystic Seaport
Daytripper: Hunter Mountain
Day Tripper - Yogi Berra Museum & Learning Center
Eats
Eats: Branches Catering
Eats: McDonagh’s Pub
Eats: Mangia Mangia
Etc
Etc - Turkey Day
Etc - Aspirin...please.
Etc - The Facebook Situation
Fall Guide
Fall Guide - Kids Fashions
Fall Guide - Kids Activity
Fall Guide - Performing Theatre
Featured Artist
Featured Artist - Hazlet Artist Jim McKenzie
Featured Artist - José Serrano
Featured Artist - Dorothy Kaplan
Gift Guide
Gift Guide - CoCo Pari
Gift Guide - East Coast Pool Concepts
Gift Guide - John Kling Cutom Homes
Health Talk
Health Talk - Asaad H. Samra, MD, FACS - Samra Plastic Surgery
Health Talk - Hiren Patel, M.D., DABR
Health Talk - Atlantic Eye Physicians
Health, Wellness & Beauty
Health - Steven A. Morgan, M.D
Health Talk - Hiren Patel, M.D., DABR
Health - Dental
Homes
Out of the Park - Masucci
A Model Home - The Tsairis’
Riverside Living
Letter
Letter to Colts Neck: Falling Into Good Times
Spring has Sprung!
Warm Winter Wishes
Living in Colts Neck
All The Pretty Horses
La Bella Vita!
Home at Last
Newsletter Articles
The Home - Landscaping by Mike Pantina
Eats: Asahi
The Home Gallery - John Cortese Masons
Our Picks
Our Pick: Folio Art Glass
Our Pick - Open Hearts Matchmaking
Company Profile - JGS Insurance
People On The Move
People On The Move - Nick Blanchard
People On The Move: Cara Smith
Kids On The Move - Sharon Lin
Summer Guide
Weigh In - My Favorite Jersey Beach
Summer Guide - The Beach is Back
Out & About - Summer 2013
The Bay
The Bay - Could I Have Diabetes and Not Even Know it?
The Bay - A Body In Motion
The Bay - Healthier Heart
The Guide
The Guide 2014 - Casale Jewelers
The Guide 2014 - Miles Ahead Sports
Company Profile - Grape Beginnings
The Home Guide
The Home Guide - New Jersey Best Lawns
The Home - Decorating Den Interiors
The Home Guide - Creative Kitchens
Weigh In
Weigh In Marlboro: What’s Your Inner Animal?
If you had one hour to be invisible...
Weigh In: What are you looking forward to doing the most during the fall?

People On The Move - Elizabeth Shea Arthur
10/20/2009 - By Teja Anderson

People On The Move - Elizabeth Shea Arthur

FORMER WHITE HOUSE SECRETARY & AUTHOR



Born in Newport, Rhode Island, to Irish immigrants, Elizabeth Shea was the second youngest of 10 children. Her father was a steamboat engineer and her mother was a stay-at-home mom and part-time cook for some of the city’s rich and famous. “We never did have a lot, but what we had was clean and paid for,” she recalls.

A smart and involved young woman, Elizabeth was eighth grade class president and valedictorian, as well as orator for her high school graduation. Although she eventually took classes at Strayer University (then Strayer College) and Brookdale College, her immediate college plans were interrupted by the bombing of Pearl Harbor and World War II. With her older brothers drafted or enlisted, she felt she also had to do something to help her country, so she took a job as a government employee with a War Service Appointment and, at the age of 17, began work as an Assistant Supervisor in the Military Personal Transfer Branch. That fall she met a jovial, sharply dressed young sailor named Johnny Arthur, whom she would marry 6 years later in June of 1948, after he had  served on three submarines during the war. Taking advantage of the G.I. Bill, John enrolled at George Washington University in Washington DC, and Elizabeth was able to procure a job with the President’s National Security Resources Board. It wasn’t long before her straight-talking sense of humor (and the fact that she resembled his daughter) caught the attention of Dr. John R. Steelman, Assistant to President Truman. Two months later he took her on as his secretary to work at the White House, which is  where she stayed for the next 5 years.

Considered by many to be one of our country’s greatest presidents, Harry S. Truman was probably best known for his decision to use nuclear weapons against Japan, founding the United Nations, formulating the Marshall Plan, and the first President to  propose universal health care. To Elizabeth, however, he was “just one of the nicest men you ever met…very humble and down to earth.” President Truman was also known for his quotes like, “The buck stops here” and “If you can’t stand the heat get out of the  kitchen,” as well as for his strong affections for wife Bess and daughter Margaret, both of whom were harangued in the press. “Bess Truman was a wonderful woman. We would exchange recipes, and I was just in awe of Margaret who was just in college at  the time…the way she handled the press. She used to sneak away from the Secret Service men all the time. They were such a close family.”

Elizabeth remembers, “I always considered myself to be a ‘Truman Democrat’ because Truman never cared if you were a Republican or a Democrat. It was always what was best for the country, and that’s how I feel too. Even now.” It was her fierce loyalty to  President Truman that affected her White House position, when the new Chief of Staff, Sherman Adams, referred to him as a haberdasher. “Haberdasher?! Well, my Irish temper got the best of me and I let him have it. How dare he stand there in the White House and disrespect a former President of the United States?!” she asks.

Surprisingly her outburst did not cost her the job; but she knew she would be unable to work for such a man, and with Dr. Steelman’s help she eventually became an Administrative Assistant for the C.I.A. When her husband got transferred to New York City they  moved with their two young sons to Hazlet, New Jersey, and Elizabeth became a full-time mom. They had their third son the following year, and just 3 years after her second daughter was born (their first daughter died shortly after birth) John suffered a  massive but nonfatal heart attack. Elizabeth was forced to go back to work.

Elizabeth, a proud grandmother of nine, has spent the past 53 years in New Jersey, and the last 14 in Brick. Several years after her husband’s death in 2003 Betty wrote and had published “The Strength of a Woman,” a story of her life that is filled with personal  poems and thoughts to her loved ones. She is now working on a second book about her ancestors.



STATS

FAVORITE RESTAURANT

Charlie Brown’s Steakhouse

FAVORITE MUSIC
my husband’s singing

FAVORITE MOVIE
The Sound of Music

PET PEEVE
politics

THREE PEOPLE YOU WOULD LIKE TO HAVE DINNER WITH
Harry S. Truman, my husband John, and Michelle Obama




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