Gale Storm Born in Bloomington, Texas; her father, William Walter Cottle died when she was 13 months old, and her mother, Minnie Corina Cottle, struggled to raise five children alone.
Minnie took in sewing, then opened a millinery shop in nearby McDade, which failed, and then moved the family to Houston.
Josephine learned to be an accomplished skater and dancer, and in Junior High and High School she performed in the drama club. When she was a 17-year-old senior in high school, two of her teachers urged her to enter the Gateway to Hollywood Contest held at the CBS Radio Studio in Hollywood, California where first prize was a one-year contract with a movie studio. She won and was given the name "Gale Storm," while her performing partner, Lee Bonnell from South Bend, Indiana (whom she later married) became Terry Belmont.