A Day in the Life | From Houston to Avenger Field by Julia Lauria-Blum
National WASP WWII Museum Blog
by Jordan Bentle
2w ago
In November 1942 the very first class of the WFTD (Women’s Flying Training Detachment) Class 43-W-1, arrived in Houston where they trained at Houston Municipal Airport (briefly called Howard Hughes Airport). Since there was a lack of housing and living facilities at the airport, the first class of women trainees lived in motels, hotels and boarding houses and had to find their own way to training. Most often, transport to the field took place in what were dubbed ‘Cattle-cars’. Avenger Field – Sweetwater, Texas Due to the meager living facilities, poor weather and congested air traffic ..read more
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Mary “Marty” Anna Martin Wyall 44-W-10 | WASP in the Spotlight 4-28-2023
National WASP WWII Museum Blog
by Jordan Bentle
1M ago
Mary Anna Martin was born on January 24, 1922, in Liberty, Indiana to Reverend Sumner L. and Bernice Smith Martin. In 1939, she graduated from Shields High School in Seymour, Indiana. In 1943, she completed her Bachelor of Science degree in bacteriology from DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana. After the attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941, Marty wanted to support the war effort and learned about the creation of the WASP program. Her father insisted that she graduate from college first. After completing her degree, Marty began her journey in flying lessons and soloed at Sky Harbor in ..read more
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Dorothy A. Lucas 44-W-7 | WASP in the Spotlight 4-28-2023
National WASP WWII Museum Blog
by Jordan Bentle
1M ago
Dorothy A. Lucas, born on December 4, 1922, in Norfolk, Virginia, was the youngest of four children. Despite the challenges of the Great Depression and her family’s constant relocations due to her father’s occupation as a traveling salesman, Dorothy found joy in swimming at the coastal beaches. After graduating from Woodrow Wilson High School in Washington, DC, in 1940, she worked as a secretary in the Pentagon while attending night classes at George Washington University. During World War II, Dorothy’s patriotism led her to join the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) Program. To be accepted ..read more
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Gloria Heath 44-W-7 | WASP in the Spotlight 4-28-2023
National WASP WWII Museum Blog
by Jordan Bentle
1M ago
Gloria Heath was born on May 7, 1922, in New York City to Royal Vale and Lillian Hart Heart. She graduated from The Putney School in 1939 and from Smith College in 1943, where she excelled as a three-sport athlete, playing basketball, ice hockey, and lacrosse. During her time at Smith College, Gloria’s older brother Royal encouraged her to take up flying. After her first flight, given by his flight instructor, she wrote in her diary, “The view of earth from the plane was so peaceful, anxieties seemed to melt away.” For the rest of her life, flight held her captive. She eventually convinced 14 ..read more
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Rosa Charlyne Creger 44-W-10 | WASP in the Spotlight 4-28-2023
National WASP WWII Museum Blog
by Jordan Bentle
1M ago
Charlyne Creger was born on December 24, 1918, in Noble, Oklahoma to her parents, Charles and Rosa Creger. Her father worked as a blacksmith and played the Tennessee Bluegrass fiddle, while her mother hailed from the Oklahoma Indian territory. Charlyne was the fourth of six children and completed her high school education in Norman, Oklahoma. She took pride in being born during that time and remarked that they did not have any toys, but rather used their minds to create their own entertainment. As they did not possess an alarm clock, the sound of a braying jackass from across the street woke e ..read more
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Shirley Chase Kruse 44-W-6 | WASP in the Spotlight 4-28-2023
National WASP WWII Museum Blog
by Jordan Bentle
1M ago
Shirley Chase Kruse was born on June 22, 2022, in Kearny, New Jersey and grew up in Newark. Her father worked as a Wall Street Accountant, while her mother was a housewife. During the Great Depression, her father lost his job, but her mother managed to keep their hardships hidden from the children. Shirley recalls that her mother was resourceful and made sure that they had a comfortable life at home. One day, while on a family trip, they passed by Teterboro Airport in New Jersey. Shirley saw a sign advertising $5 airplane rides and asked her father if she could have one for her 10th birthday ..read more
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Nell “Mickey” Stevenson Bright 43-W-7 | WASP in the Spotlight 4-28-2023
National WASP WWII Museum Blog
by Jordan Bentle
1M ago
Nell Stevenson was born on June 20, 1921, in Canyon, Texas. When she was eight years old, her father paid a dollar for her to ride in a World War I biplane, and from then on, she knew she wanted to learn to fly. Nell graduated from West Texas A&M with a B.S. degree in English and Economics. Her fiancé nicknamed her “Mickey,” and the name stuck. With her parents’ support, Nell and nine men bought a Taylorcraft in 1941. By the end of 1942, Mickey had earned her private pilot’s license at English Field, Amarillo, Texas, with over 75 hours of flying time. One day, while waiting to fly, she pic ..read more
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On the Home Front and Overseas | The Impact of ‘Woman-power’ During WWII by Julia Lauria-Blum
National WASP WWII Museum Blog
by Jordan Bentle
1M ago
WWII Recruitment Poster Photo: National Park Service To simply say that American women played a critical role as ‘weapons’ in the war effort during World War II, would be a drastic understatement. To put that in context, more than six million women took jobs in factories on the U.S. home front, and about 350,000 women answered the call to serve in uniform…in addition to the 1,100 (then) civilians who began serving in the WAFS and WFTD very shortly after Eleanor Roosevelt’s commentary. In Eleanor Roosevelt’s My Day column in September 1942, she wrote “I believe in this case, if the war goes ..read more
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February 16
National WASP WWII Museum Blog
by Jordan Bentle
2M ago
WAFS Dorothy Scott is born in 1920 at Seattle, WA WASP Peggie Parker Eccles is born in 1921 WASP Mary Jane Stimson Kenward is born in 1923 WASP Dr. Mary W. Lamy is born in 1922 ..read more
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Afton J. Brown, USAF – Panel Moderator
National WASP WWII Museum Blog
by Jordan Bentle
2M ago
ABOUT Professional pilot and aviation mentor. First Officer for Fedex Express and Instructor Pilot in the United States Air Force. Over 13 years’ experience with 4,000 hours instructing and operating 4 different airframes on 6 continents supporting Presidential and Vice-Presidential movement, Operation Inherent Resolve, Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Freedom’s Sentinel, and flight instruction in two major weapons systems. Professional memberships include Women in Aviation International and EAA. My passion is aviation and mentoring future aviators. My future professional focus is on in ..read more
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