Monday, December 31, 2007


Dorothy was born in San Francisco, California on September 15, 1919.

As she grew up, she was intrigued with the possibility of learning to fly, so she learned to fly. When she learned about the flying training program at Avenger, which was teaching women pilots to fly military aircraft, she applied and was accepted into the program.

She spent seven months at Avenger, flying PT-17s, BT-13s and AT-6s. She graduated, received her silver WASP wings and was assigned to Merced Army Air Field, California, a training base for male cadets, as an engineering test pilot for AT-6 aircraft. This required flight testing any aircraft that had received major repairs (after an accident, a major overhaul or any changes in the structure of the airplane) before it could be flown again by an instructor or a student.

Following the deactivation of the WASP, Dorothy worked at the San Carlos Airport in California, ferrying aircraft.

She then went back to college and received her California Teaching Certificate and taught physical education in a high schoo from 1948 to 1953.

In 1952, she married engineer Howard Ritscher (who passed away in 1992). Dorothy has two daughters (Kathryn and Susan).

Today, she loves to play tennis, travel, garden, volunteer and play with her grandson, Cole —not necessarily in that order!

Dorothy attended the opening of the National WASP WWII Museum in 2007, and was one of 29 WASP to put their hands in cement. She passed away December 31, 2007.

posted on Final Flight, Jan. 24, 2008

Friday, December 21, 2007


LILA MOORE MANN, Downey, California--in her own words:

I was born in New York, New York. Later we lived in Baltimore, Maryland, South Bend, Indiana and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. I went to Goucher College for Women one year, Maine State Teacher, and College at Townson and received a BS in Education.

I learned to fly in Westminister, Maryland, as I had a lifelong desire to fly. I needed to solo and receive my license to qualify, completed two year package contract in Montgomery County, Maryland.

I was accepted in the WASP program, class 44-7. I married Don Mann during graduation leave. I was assigned to Minter Field, Bakersfield, California as a test pilot on the BT-13 and UC-78. Deactivation notice arrived early October 1944; Don was given orders to report to Gadsden, Alabama (chemical warfare). I resigned October 12, 1944.

After deactivation, I worked for the Los Angeles Police Department seven months, organizing and coordinating recreational and social activities for girls (Deputy Auxiliary Police); part time librarian for Downey School District; reading specialist and classroom teacher; and private tutor. I was owner, with my husband, of a small recreational row boat and paddleboard rental business on Mountain Lake for eleven summers. I volunteered many times for activities with Camp Fire Girls (20 years) and worked on a committee for children in church.

I am a mother of three girls and grandmother of five children.

(Reprinted from Betty Turner's "Out of the Blue and Into History" p. 458)


Lila passed away on December 21, 2007 at her daughter's home in Downey, California.

Highlights from Lila's memorial service:

LILA MOORE MANN was a "Special Lady" who was interested in everyone and everything around her. For 88 years, her enthusiasm carried into all aspects of her life.

FAMILY was very important to Lila. She had a wonderful childhood in Baltimore, growing up with 3 younger brothers. After marrying Don, they moved to his home in California, where he worked for the Los Angeles Police Department until retirement. They gave their three daughters a great life with memorable family time spent in the mountains. Lila loved her mountain cabin and all the summers spent working and playing there.

EDUCATION was a necessity of life to Lila. She graduated from Towsend College in Baltimore to become an elementary school teacher. She continued teaching for the Downey schools after moving to California. Lila became a Reading Specialist helping many children overcome their difficulties.

LOVE OF NATURE was a definite passion to Lila. As a child she was always outdoors swimming, sledding, ice skating or climbing trees. Her summers during college were spent as a camp counselor. She was a wonderful swimmer and diver. With an appreciation for nature, Lila began studying birds, trees and flowers. Se was a life long member of the Audubon Society.

WASP was the most memorable time in Lila's life. At the beginning of WWII, she heard about an experimental women's pilot program with the U.S. military. The women, unlike men, needed to have their pilot's license to be able to join. Lila used all of her salary as a teacher to pay for lessons. In 1943, she and her childhood friend, Eileen, joined the "Women Airforce Service Pilots" program (WASP). These special women went through a grueling physically and mentally challenging training to become the first of their kind. The women formed lifelong friendships. Lila was very proud of her accomplishment.

LILA'S FAMILY is also very proud of this Special Lady. She was a loving and devoted Mother and Grandmother to all. Because of her example, we know the importance of Family, Education, Service, and God. We'll miss her always!!!!!

Sunday, December 2, 2007


"I was raised in Iowa, a prairie child, and all we had was sky. My mother was killed in an auto crash when I was three. I was told I could see her again in heaven. The only way I knew to get there was to fly."1
" (in her own words from "Out of the Blue and into History" by WASP Betty Stagg Turner)

Ann Darr, WWII pilot, poet, creative writing professor, radio broadcaster, and mother of three passed away on December 2, 2007 in Chicago. Ann was born in Bagley, Iowa in 1920, graduated from the University of Iowa in 1941, worked for NBC radio in New York, and was one of the first women military pilots to serve in WWII as a Women’s Air Force Service Pilot (WASP).

While with NBC radio in 1942 Ann was a writer and broadcaster for The Woman of Tomorrow. As a WWII pilot Ann was stationed in Sweetwater, Texas. Over 25,000 women signed up to join the WASPs and only 1074 earned wings. The WASPs flew over 60 million miles in every aircraft the Air Force had: small trainers, B-26s, B-17s, UC-78s, P-51 fighters, and the B-29 Super Fortress. By the time the WASPs were disbanded on December 20, 1944, 38 of the pilots died in airplane crashes. The first B-29 flight by the WASP’s was to show men who balked at flying it that this was a plane “even women could fly.”

Ann was a prolific writer and author of eight books of poetry: Flying the Zuni Mountains, St. Ann’s Gut, The Myth of a Woman’s Fist, Riding With the Fireworks, Cleared for Landing, Do You Take This Woman, The Twelve Pound Cigarette, and Confessions of a Skewed Romantic. Ann’s poetry readings criss crossed the world from the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. to Prague, Czechoslovakia.She taught creative writing up until the age of 80 at American University in Washington, D.C., the Writer’s Center in Bethesda, MD, and other universities throughout the country. She raised her family with her husband, George in Chevy Chase, MD.

In commemoration of the WWII Memorial Ann wrote an article for The New York Times Magazine, May 7, 1995, The Women Who Flew—but Kept Silent and for U.S. News and World Reports: The Long Flight Home: Women Served and Died in WWII. Now they are remembered.

While in her 70’s Ann toured Western Europe with other artists, writers, and musicians as a member of Point-Counter Point. This artistic troupe would float from city to city on a large river barge, dock, and then put on a day of cultural exchange with the local citizens. Ann once wrote to a friend what she wanted to appear on her tombstone: Late in life she ran away from home and joined the circus.

After I ran away from home and came back again, my Papa said go if you must but mind three things: stay away from water, stay off of boats, and don’t go up in an aeroplane. So first I learned to swim, then I learned to sail, and then I learned to fly.
A Poem from Flying the Zuni Mountains

Ann was stricken with Alzheimers and lived in nursing homes near her daughters in Portsmouth, New Hampshire and Chicago, Illinois over the past six years. Ann is survived by her three daughters: Dr. Elizabeth Darr, Worcester, MA, Deborah Darr (Kevin Shanley), Chicago, IL, and Shannon Darr-Longstaff, Eliot, ME.; grandchildren: Judson Lester, Vera Lester, Travis Longstaff, Taygra Longstaff, and many other great friends and relatives. A memorial service will be held at Arlington National Cemetery in the spring.

Contact person:
Deborah Darr

Other links:

"The Long Flight Home"
"Flying the Zuni Mountains"
"Cleared for Landing"
"Love in the Past Tense"
DOD Article
Photo: Ann & her daughter, Deborah

Friday, October 19, 2007

Doris L. Garrison
Wed Nov 14, 2007, 05:30 PM EST
Concord - Ma.

Concord - Doris LeFevre Garrison, 91, of Concord, and recently of Framingham, died Friday, Oct. 12, 2007, after a short illness. Her husband of 60 years, John Leland Garrison, died in 2005.

Mrs. Garrison was born in Schenectady, N.Y., where her father, I.D. LeFevre, was comptroller of the General Electric Company. She graduated from Brown School and Mount Holyoke College, and received a master’s degree in teaching from Columbia University.

In World War II, Mrs. Garrison served in the WASP (Women Air Force Service Pilots), a group of women pilots recruited by Jackie Cochran for non-combat flying missions. During her time in the service, Mrs. Garrison was a member of a tow-target squadron and a group that ferried B-25 bombers between Texas and California.

She was a resident of Rye, N.Y., for 40 years before moving to Concord 12 years ago. In Rye, she taught for many years at Rye Country Day School, and volunteered in the League of Women Voters and Planned Parenthood of Westchester. She was active in the Rye Presbyterian Church and a member of Manursing Island Club and the Apawamis Golf Club.

Mrs. Garrison leaves her daughter, Jeanne Garrison of Cambridge, and her son, John Mark Garrison of Sherborn; two grandsons and a sister, Jeanne Hauser, of Palo Alto, Calif.

Services will be private.

Donations in lieu of flowers may be sent in Mrs. Garrison’s name to Planned Parenthood.

posted Dec. 3, 2007

Wednesday, October 17, 2007


Elizabeth Williamson Shipley


Oct. 4, 1916 - Oct. 17, 2007


IN HER OWN WORDS--from Betty Turner's


"I was born on October 4, 1916, in Zamboanga, Philippine Islands. We lived in the Philippine Islands until I was seven years old. My father was in private business. I went to high school in Ontario, California, and went to Santa Barbara State, California, and did graduate work at University of California at Los Angeles and University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona.

After graduation, a school in Burbank, California hired me. One of my student's fathers was a test pilot for Lockheed aircraft, and would fly his P-38 over the playground at our school. My brother was a Navy pilot, and many of my friends were joining the Army Air Corps, so I developed a keen interest in flying and wanted to do my part for the war effort.

A friend of my family, Ethel Sheehy, told me about Jacqueline Cochran and her program. I applied, and found I had to have 35 hours flying time and a private pilot's license. I learned to fly in a J-3 cub at Blythe, California. I was accepted in the WASP October 1, 1943, in class 44-4.

I was assigned to Independence, Kansas, flew BT-14, flew OSI and administrative personnel to various bases. I transferred to Perrin Field, Sherman, Texas, flight -testing BT-13's, after repairs. Ferried PT-19's and PT-17's to Kelly AFB for storage. Then sent to Foster Field, Victoria, Texas, flying the AT-6. I was transferred back to Perrin Field and married Lt. Francis Shipley. I continued to ferry planes from closed primary bases to Kelly AFB for storage.

After deactivation, I refused the offered reserve commission in the Army Air Corps to be with my husband. In 1956, I went back to teaching. I taught at military bases in Japan, the Philippines, Georgia, Arizona and Texas. When my husband retired in 1969, I accepted a teaching assignment at Randolph AFB and remained there for 15 years. I always taught Air Force children throughout my educational career.

I have two sons, David Peyton Shipley, married, who has two sons Jeffrey and Steve. They live in Tucson. David went through Fire Fighters Academy. He has been doing that for the past 11 years, loves his work. His wife is an architect. Charles was Vice-President of Arizona State Chamber of Commerce. He was the seventh biggest lobbyist in the state, a true political person. He is divorced and is notw President of The Arizona Mining Association.

I was chairman of the San Antonio WASP Convention in September 1992, and I am as active as I can be in the WASP Organization. Now I am Chairman of the TWU (Texas Women University) WASP Endowment Fund.

(from page 352-353)

The official notification from her family is included below--it reflects their love and respect for this unique woman.

Elizabeth Williamson Shipley

"In between was a wonderful life | her father said "you can do anything you put your mind to," and she did | a loving wife | a widow | a teacher | a pilot | a WASP | a sister | a mother of David Shipley and Charles Shipley (deceased) | a grandmother of four: Chris, Colin, Jeff, and Steve | a faithful friend | a military supporter | she was adventurous | loved to laugh | played golf and bunko | an independent spirit | she adored her family | traveled the world | was naive | feisty | hardheaded | very loving | she loved ice cream | poked the bottoms of See's Chocolate till she found her favorites | ate lots of chocolate | Betty | Hot Liz | Grammy | Ma Shipley | she will be greatly missed.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to the Alzheimer's Association or the American Diabetes Association.


ADA Research Foundation
Attn: Individual Giving Dept.
1701 N. Beauregard St.
Alexandria, VA

Alzheimer's Association
225 N. Michigan Ave.
FL 17


pdf file of original announcement

posted 11/6/2007

Friday, October 12, 2007


Concord - Doris LeFevre Garrison, 91, of Concord, and recently of Framingham, died Friday, Oct. 12, 2007, after a short illness. Her husband of 60 years, John Leland Garrison, died in 2005.

Mrs. Garrison was born in Schenectady, N.Y., where her father, I.D. LeFevre, was comptroller of the General Electric Company. She graduated from Brown School and Mount Holyoke College, and received a master’s degree in teaching from Columbia University.

In World War II, Mrs. Garrison served in the WASPs (Women’s Air Force Service Pilots), a group of women pilots recruited by Jackie Cochran for non-combat flying missions. During her time in the service, Mrs. Garrison was a member of a tow-target squadron and a group that ferried B-25 bombers between Texas and California.

She was a resident of Rye, N.Y., for 40 years before moving to Concord 12 years ago. In Rye, she taught for many years at Rye Country Day School, and volunteered in the League of Women Voters and Planned Parenthood of Westchester. She was active in the Rye Presbyterian Church and a member of Manursing Island Club and the Apawamis Golf Club.

Mrs. Garrison leaves her daughter, Jeanne Garrison of Cambridge, and her son, John Mark Garrison of Sherborn; two grandsons and a sister, Jeanne Hauser, of Palo Alto, Calif.

Services will be private.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Esther Lorene Stahr Cuddington-Rumler 44-W-9

Esther Lorene Cuddington-Rumler, 84, of Farmington passed away at 10:45 am on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2007 at Methodist Medical Center, Peoria.

Born in San Antonio, TX the daughter of Rudolph E. and Hazel A. (Wight) Stahr, she first married Irving “Bud” James Cuddington June 12, 1945 in Eastland, TX. He died May 8, 1980.

Esther then married Woodrow “Woody” Thomas Rumler Feb. 11, 1984 in Rockport, Tx. He died April 13, 1992.

Surviving are two nieces, Cheri (Joe) Friedman of Roberts, and Diana (David) Smith of Quincy; one step-son, Raymond Rumler of Las Vegas, NV; one step-daughter, Judy Rumler of Emporia, KS; and three step-grandsons, Darren Flynn, Bruce Flynn and David Flynn all of Canton.

She and her 1st husband owned and operated Cuddington Insurance Agency in Farmington for 40 years, retiring in 1981. She served in the US Air Force. During WWII, she enlisted in the WASP where she was trained as an Air Force service pilot. 1850 women were accepted for training at Avenger Field in Sweetwater, TX. The purpose of the program was to free male pilots for combat duty.

Training took six months, and upon graduation, she received various assignments including ferrying airplanes from factory to base, towing targets for gunnery practice, testing new or repaired aircraft, and basic and advance flight instruction. In 1944 the WASP program was deactivated.

She was a member of the Farmington Women of the Moose Lodge 369 and Farmington American Legion Post 140. Services will be Monday, Sept. 24th at 2:00 pm at Anderson-Sedgwick Funeral Home, Farmington where visitation will be one hour prior. Cheri Friedman will officiate. Burial will follow at Oak Ridge Cemetery, Farmington. Military rites will be conducted by the Farmington American Legion Post 140. Memorials may be made to the Farmington Rescue Squad.


In her own words, Esther wrote about her life in WASP Betty Turner's book, "Out of the Blue and Into History."

"I was born on September 18, 1923, in San Antonio, Texas. I joined a group of women known as Texas Wing of Women Flyers, (TWWF). We obtained training that cadets had received at the cadet center in San Antonio, Texas. The classes covered physics, theory of flight, aircraft identification, navel air and sea identification, navigation, map reading and theory of war maneuvers. We received Link trainer instructions at Randolph Field, and Morse code and blinker code at Brooks field. While attending TWWF classes, I was secretary to the engineering officers Col. Anderson and Col. Ferguson, who was a WWI pilot at Kelly Field. I flew Cubs at the airport in San Antonio, and Aeronica in Alice, Texas at Knolle Flying Service to get 35 hours. I applied to go into the WASP, and entered class 44-9. I was assigned to Eagle Pass, Texas Army Airfield, an AT-6 basic training school. We flew the PT-19 and AT-6's.

After deactivation, I attended CAA School in Ft. Worth, Texas for tower and radio range school. We learned how to take code at 20 words per minute on the typewriter, radio broadcasting and weather observation with ribbon-like tape, and place it in another machine to go out over the National Weather Service.

On June 12, 1945, I married Captain I.J.Cuddington. He had been a gunnery instructor at Eagle Pass. He was attached to the Eighth Airforce flying P-47s at Abilene AAB. In March 1946 we were in Salt Lake City, Utah when Johnny got out of the Air Corp. We settled in Abilene, Texas, where we both instructed flying and did charter work until January 1948.

Johnny was recalled to active duty, and we were sent to France AAFB, Panama Canal Zone. While I was there, I was asked to be a flight scout leader for a group of 17 year old girls. I got permission to teach them engines with an R2800 cut-away engine. We studied map reading and navigation. At completion, the young ladies received their wings at the France AFB Officer Club.

In 1949 we were based in Guatemala City, then sent back to Albrook Field, Canal Zone; we were reassigned to Chanute Field, Rantoul, Illinois for his deactivation.

From 1950 to 1952, I worked at the Great Lakes Naval Regional Accounting Office, Waukegan, Illinois. From 1952 to 1954, I worked for IBM in Downtown Chicago.

In 1954, Johnny and I purchased his father's insurance agency and ran it together until his death in May 1980; I sold the business in October 1981. I married Woodrow Rumler in February 1984, and he died in 1992.

While in Rockport, I flew a friend's twin-engine Aztec on a couple of cross-country trips to McAllen and Matagorda Island.

My hobbies are golf, horseback riding, and painting.

I was on the board of the Illinois Art League for seven years. when the painting bug bit me, I attended college classes at the University of Illinois, two courses at Western Illinois University, and four semesters at Spoon River college. People like my paintings enough to buy them.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Caro Bayley Bosca WASP 43-W-7

BOSCA, Caro Bayley 85, died of Pancreatic Cancer on September 13, 2007 at 8:30 p.m. surrounded by her loved ones. Her kind sweet nature was continually evidenced as she gracefully led her family and friends through this final journey. "We will get through this", she said. With her remarkable strength, accepting nature and quick humor, as in life, in her death she set an example; this is how it is done. She called it, "rolling with the punches". We call it grace.

Caro was born March 29, 1922 in Springfield, Ohio to Caro Gray and "Captain" Elden Dicus Bayley. She shared a happy childhood with three siblings; Elden Dicus Bayley Jr., Robert Gray Bayley and "Dodie" Mary Ellen Bayley. Caro attended Ridgewood School, Springfield High School and Saint Mary's College in Raleigh, North Carolina.

In May of 1943, Caro traveled to Sweetwater, Texas, where she entered the Woman's Airforce Training Program (WASP) as part of Class 43-W-7. She received her silver wings at graduation in November of that year. Reporting to Biggs Field in El Paso, Texas, she was part of a B-25 two target squadron. While serving in the military, she flew the SBC Dauntless, SB2C Helldiver, AT-6, AT-7, AT-11, BT-13, PT-17, P-47 Thunderbolt, B-25 Billy Mitchel Bomber and the B-26.

In January of 1945, Caro moved to Coconut Grove, Florida and joined six other WASP's. They named their rented house "The WASP Nest" and each worked on getting their Instructors Rating. Caro instructed in Miami and Fort Lauderdale, Florida. While instructing, she began entering aerobatic competitions. First in Jess Bristow's "cut-up Cub" and later in Ben Bradley's "Bradley's Special". Then while flying the glider act in Jess Bristow's All Women's Air Show, she had a chance to fly the second "Pitts Special" bi-plane built by Curtiss Pitts. She fell in love with that airplane. On a handshake deal between Curtiss and her father, Curtiss finished up the third Pitts Special with a 125 HP engine and the first of the CURTISS planes with an inverted carburetor engine to allow it to fly upside down. Caro, after flying it she said, "I surely thought I had died and gone to heaven!" That year on January 3, 1951 in the Miami Air Maneuvers Air Show, she became the International Women's Aerobatic Champion in her "Pitts". Earlier that same morning, she had taken off from the blimp base located on the Venetian Causeway (near Miami Beach) in a Piper Super Cruiser with a 125 Lycoming Engine to try to set an altitude record for Class II Aircraft. She set an official record of 30,203 feet for which she received the Bleriot medal and held the altitude record until the mid-1980s. For these two accomplishments, she was named Mademoiselle Magazine's "Aviation Woman of the Year" in 1951. Shortly after that January day, Orsino Hugo Bosca, an acquaintance from Springfield called and asked if she knew any girls he could take to dinner while he was visiting Florida. She said, "I'm a girl and I am just as hungry as the rest of these girls down here". He said, "Oh I thought you were a mechanic". She replied, "I can do some of that, too". So began the next phase in the life of Caro Bayley.

Hanging up her wings in 1951, Caro married Orsino Hugo Bosca. With her typical enthusiasm for life, Caro had four children in five years: D'Orsi Hugo, Martin Bayley, Caro-Gray and Marcy Elena Bosca. They lived in Springfield, Ohio summering in Wilmington, North Carolina and later in Harbor Springs, Michigan. Caro was a member of the Monday Afternoon Club, the B & S Investment Club and the bridge club.

She was a member of the Board of Directors of the International Woman's Air and Space Museum, a life member of the Ninety-Nines and a member of the EAA. Caro was inducted into the Aviation Hall of Fame in Ohio in the early 1990s. She was elected to the position of President of the WASP's which she helped for the past four years. She was a member of the Women in Aviation, International (WAI) and the Women's Military Aviators (WMA).

She enjoyed skiing (OFOS), sailing, tennis and golf, and loved to travel. She especially enjoyed Italy and all aspects of the food wine, style and art experienced there.Regardless of her humble belief, Caro was an accomplished cook and had an unusual flair and ease with entertaining, as all friends and family will attest. She cheated at backgammon, but otherwise led an honest life.

Caro dreaded public speaking. For years, we would hear her laments that it was her turn to give a program at the Monday Afternoon Club. Years later, as President of the WASP's, she found her voice speaking passionately about women in aviation, her experiences as a WASP and her love of flying. She always said, "She got her nickel's worth out of her experience as a WASP". She managed even more than that out of life every day.

We were blessed to have her as a mother, sister, and friend.She has inspired a love of life in us all. We are and always have been grateful to have known her. Caro is preceded in death by her husband, Orsino Hugo Bosca; son, Martin Bayley Bosca; her sister, "Dodie" Mary Ellen Bayley; and brother, Elden Dicus Bayley, Jr. She is survived by her brother, Robert Gray (Ruth) Bayley of Springfield, Ohio; children, D'Orsi Hugo Bosca of Springfield, Ohio, Caro-Gray Bosca of Boston, Massachusetts, Marcy Elena & John McGregor of Harbor Springs, Michigan; grandchildren, Orson Bayley Humphrey, CaroMia Humphrey, Elena-Lee Humphrey.

Caro's family would like to extend special thanks to Dr. Panayides, the nursing staff at Community Hospital and Community Mercy Hospice for their care and kindness towards us all. To Sherry Ringler, Mother's dear friend, who provided both joy and assistance over the years and especially in the difficult last months and we are forever indebted.

Services will be held Thursday, September 27, 2007 at 5:00 p.m. at Christ Episcopal Church, 409 East High Street, Springfield with a reception immediately following. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be sent to Community Mercy Hospice Fund, 1343 North Fountain Boulevard, Springfield, Ohio 45504. We are grateful to Littleton & Rue Funeral Home for their supportive and kind assistance given to us during this difficult time. You may express condolences to the family at

Reprinted from the Springfield News-Sun on 9/16/2007.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Ruth Lindley Muller, 43-W-5

Ruth Lindley Muller passed away in Santa Barbara, on May 8, 2007 at the age of 86.

She was the youngest child of longtime San Diego lawyer Fred E. Lindley and his wife, Alma. In 1941 she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from San Diego State University. While still at San Diego State, she took a flying class and was hooked. Ruth then trained at Montgomery Field and obtained her private pilot’s license.

In 1943, she was accepted into the Women Air Force Service Pilots (WASP) program and left San Diego for training at Avenger Field in Sweetwater, Texas. As part of WASP class 43-W-5, she flew the same military planes as the men flew. But her favorite plane was the P-51. In 1944 she married Capt. Clifford H. Muller, but continued to ferry planes as a WASP until the program was disbanded on December 20, 1944. Her WASP uniform jacket with her wings now resides in the "Price of Freedom" exhibit in the Smithsonian. During the next two decades, Ruth and her family traveled the world living in Finland, England, Morocco, and Japan during her husband’s Air Force career.

In 1971, Ruth returned to San Diego. For thirty years Ruth made her home in Pacific Beach. She stayed active in women’s flying through her membership in the Ninety-Nines and WASP associations. Oma (as her children and grandchildren called her) was very involved in the lives of her family and never missed a birthday, graduation, or special event. Ruth is survived by her two children, Clifford H. Muller of Florida and Lin Reetz of Santa Barbara, California. She also leaves behind four granddaughters; Laura Rossini, Kelly Anderson, Kristin Muller, and Kimberly Muller.


Services will be held August 3rd at 1 pm at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery in Point Loma. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to WASP Endowment, Texas Woman's University, P.O. Box 425528, Denton, TX 76204-5528.

Betty Stabler Harlan, 44-W-10

Betty Stabler Harlan, 84, of 74 Stoney Creek Drive, Montoursville, passed away Wednesday July 25, 2007, at the Gatehouse in Divine Providence Hospital.

Born October 6, 1922, in Williamsport she was the daughter of William and Carrie Clark Stabler.

Betty retired from Williamsport High School where she taught Home Economics and Aviation, and had taught private flight instruction through instrumentation. She graduated from Mansfield University and was a commercial pilot. She and her husband, Charles O. Harlan, owned Aero Flight, Cessna Dealership Charter. She served as an F.A.A. Accident Prevention Councilor for many years. A veteran of WW II she served in the Air Corps as a military pilot in W.A.S.P. (Women Air Force Service Pilot). She was a member of the Silver Wings and the Felicitas 500 Order of Eastern Star.

Surviving in addition to her husband of 41 years is a son, Gary Shafer of Georgia, and a daughter, Constance Martin of Slate Run.
The funeral service will be held 11 a.m. Saturday, July 28, at the Spitler Funeral Home, 733 Broad St. Montoursville with Pastor Marie E. Lewis and Pastor Vernon R. Eichelberger officiating. Interment will follow in Mound of Wildwood Cemetery. Friends will be received on Friday from 6 – 8:00 p.m. at the funeral home with an Eastern Star service at 7:30

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Daisy Mathis Vaughn, 44-W-6


Daisy Vaughan
Aviation specialist

LACONIA — Daisy Mathis Vaughan, 90, of 21 Ledges Drive died Thursday, July 5, 2007, at Ledgeview, The Taylor Community.

Miss Vaughan was born Feb. 13, 1917, in Chicago, the daughter of Dr. John G. and Daisy (Mathis) Vaughan.

Miss Vaughan attended Northwestern University and Barnard College and served with the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP). She was an aviation specialist and was employed by the U.S. government at the Federal Aviation Administration and the Navy Hydrographic Office. She had lived in Washington, D.C., and Bethesda, Md., for many years. She had been a summer visitor to the Lakes Region since 1935 before moving to Sandwich in 1994.

Survivors include five nephews, John Muehlke Jr. and his wife, Yi Wen, of Woodstock, Richard Muehlke and his wife, Martha, of Groton, Mass., William S. Vaughan and his wife, Joan Wright, of Washington, D.C., Michael T. Vaughan and his wife, Keelin Murphy, of Stony Brook, N.Y., and Anthony Vaughan of San Francisco; two nieces, Jane M. Rollins and her husband, Al, of Shapleigh, Maine, and Barbara V. Levy and her husband, Gerald, of Rota, Spain; 11 grandnephews and grandnieces.

In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by a sister, Marcelia V. Muehlke; two brothers and a niece, Marjorie S. Muehlke, of Gilford.

The family would like to extend their thanks to the staff of Ledgeview and Hospice for their wonderful care.

According to her wishes, there will be no calling hours or funeral service. A family celebration of her life will be held at a later date.

Wilkinson-Beane Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 164 Pleasant St., Laconia, is in charge of the arrangements. For more information and to view an on line memorial go to

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Sarah Allshouse Gleeson, 44-W-9

Sarah J. Allshouse Gleeson
East McKeesport

Sarah Jane "Sadie" (Allshouse) Gleeson, 84, of East McKeesport, died Tuesday, July 3, 2007, at home. She was born May 21, 1923, in Wilmerding to the late Edward L. and Alma (Hallam) Allshouse and also was predeceased by son Glenn Gleeson, former husband Joseph Gleeson; siblings Hallam and Robert Allshouse, Blanche Laird and Harriet Moore and a brother-in-law, Robert Laird. Sarah was a retired sales representative for Central Pharmaceuticals, Seymour, Ind., and had received 15 Archie awards as the top salesperson.

She was a veteran of World War II, having served in the Women's Air Force Service Pilots, and was a member of the Women Aviators Association and Linway United Presbyterian Church, North Versailles. Sarah enjoyed vacationing with family at Edinboro Lake, swimming, water skiing and golfing and liked to travel with friends and attend W.A.S.P. reunions.

She is survived by children Carl Gleeson and Barbara (fiance Kevin Dobis) Gleeson, both of East McKeesport, and Scott (Norma) Gleeson, of Atlanta; grandchildren Pamela and Jacqueline Gleeson and Thomas DePaoli; brother Edward L. (Mary) Allshouse Jr., of Monroeville; sister-in-law, Jane Allhouse; brother-in-law, George Moore; special friend Roberta Churilla, of Forest Hills, and nieces and nephews.

Friends will be received from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday at the FORGIE-SNYDER FUNERAL HOME, 1032 Broadway, East McKeesport, 412-823-8083, where services will be at 11 A.M. Friday with the Rev. Thomas Moore officiating. Interment with military honors will follow in Grandview Cemetery, North Versailles.


Sunday, July 1, 2007

Kathleen Nova Kelly Titland, 43-W-4

KALISPELL, MONTANA - Kathleen Nova (Kelly) Titland, 87, an Air Force WASP veteran who taught in Cut Bank until retiring, died of natural causes May 22 at her home in Kalispell. A memorial service with military honors is 2 p.m. Monday at John-son Mortuary Chapel in Kalispell. Johnson Mortuary and Crematory is in charge of arrangements. 


Kathleen was born Jan. 18, 1920, in Duran, N.M., the daughter of Daniel and Nova (Simpson) Kelly.   She was raised in Tucum-cari, N.M., and graduated from New Mexico State University with a degree in education. 

Meeting the requirements for the newly created Army Air Forces flying training program for women pilots, Kathleen  paid her way to  Texas in early 1943.  On August 7, 1943, she graduated as a member of WASP class 43-4, the largest class ever to graduate (112).  From Avenger Field, she was sent to Love Field as a pilot with the Fifth Ferrying Group.  However, shortly after arriving, her orders were changed, and she was sent to Camp Davis, North Carolina, where she became one of the first women to tow targets for ground to air artillery training. She pursued flying with the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP); flying various airplanes during World War II. 

She was united in marriage to Robert John Titland on June 1, 1947, in Superior, Mont. 

After receiving a master's of education degree, she enjoyed a long teaching career in Cut Bank, Mont., until retiring after 25 years. 

Following her retirement, she volunteered for many years at Kalispell Regional Medical Center and the Kalispell Dialysis Center. She enjoyed traveling, painting, hiking, photography and continued to enjoy flying. 

Survivors include a son, Robert (Michelle) Titland Jr. of Great Falls; three daughters, Lee Scroggins of Las Vegas, Nev., Susan (Mark) Foley of Wasilla, Alaska, and Sara Tutland of Albu-querque, N.M.; five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Robert, in 1994. 

The family suggests that memo-rial contributions be sent to the Dialysis Patient Fund, 135 Com-mons Way, Kalispell, MT 59901. Condolences may be sent online to and/or 

V/R posted by Nancy Parrish Jan 25, 2011
Original notice: Great Falls Tribune on 6/3/2007.

More on target towing at Camp Davis, North Carolina