Week of October 18-24, 1974

While Betty Ford recovered from a mastectomy, her daughter Susan, 17, served as stand-in First Lady on White House receiving lines. "Not bad, but I'd rather have Mother do it," she told PEOPLE this week.

A New Direction
On Oct. 19, Dustin Hoffman, 37, announced plans for his Broadway directing debut in the Murray Schisgal comedy "All Over Town," which starred Cleavon Little and Barnard Hughes. "This does not mean that I prefer directing to acting but that I'd like to do both," he told The New York Times. He did, but acting took precedence. This year Hoffman, a two-time Academy Award winner, received the American Film Institute's Life Achievement Award.

New Arrival
Former Mouseketeer Annette Funicello, 32 (with husband Jack Gilardi), gave birth to her third child, Jason, Oct. 21 in Burbank. Today she battles multiple sclerosis.

Hospital Call for Benny
Comedian Jack Benny, 80, checked into Los Angeles's Cedars of Lebanon hospital Oct. 20 after his right hand felt numb while he prepared for a concert. He died of cancer two months later.

Prognosis: Great
Doctors declare Vice President Nelson Rockefeller's wife, Happy, 48, cancer-free Oct. 18 after her recent surgery. She still frequents New York's social scene.

THE HOTTEST!
"Nothing from Nothing" put Billy Preston, 28, atop the pop charts this week. Convicted in 1992 on drug charges and in 1998 on fraud charges, Preston, now free, still tours.