WASP VELTA SNYDER HANEY BENN 44-W-7
Monday, December 6, 2010
WASP VELTA SNYDER HANEY BENN 44-W-7
Saturday, November 13, 2010
San Jose: Pioneering female military pilot dies at age 90
Tucker, one of about 1,000 trailblazing women who became the first female pilots in U.S. history to fly military aircraft, finally received her medal in the mail about three weeks ago.
Monday, Tucker died from complications from pneumonia.
"She said the award is nice but serving in the Army Air Force and flying the planes was worth more than the award could ever cover," said her son, Gary Tucker. "She really loved what she did. She said, "When I was in the sky, I had the whole sky before me. There were not limits to where I could go."
After President Barack Obama last year signed into law a bill to award the Women Airforce Service Pilots with the Congressional Gold Medal, Marcella Tucker sat on the couch in her San Jose home with the Mercury News and reminisced about her military service.
In an effort to address the shortage of pilots during World War II, the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) program was established in 1942. They were assigned to noncombat missions in the United States. Tucker was one of the 25,000 women who answered the military's call for pilots, and was among the 1,830 accepted and less than 1,100 who actually flew missions. She was sent to Howard Hughes Airport in Houston for extensive flight training. After earning her wings, Tucker was stationed at Love Field in Dallas. The female pilots were assigned to 120 bases across America.
As she looked though her scrapbook in 2009, Tucker pointed to a photo of herself sitting on the wing of a BT-13, a single-engine propeller airplane used to train American pilots during the war. She was 23 at the time.
She recalled her journey from Santa Clara to Love Field in Dallas, where she was assigned for nearly two years and flew a variety of planes, including once co-piloting a B-24 bomber from Dallas to March Field near Riverside.
"It was a wonderful experience because we had orders to go all over: east, west, north and south," Tucker said in the interview. "We picked up airplanes at the factory and delivered them to the training fields."
In the months and weeks before her death, Tucker could still recall specific details about the planes she flew and the missions she completed, her son said. Tucker's orders sometimes required her to deliver light cargo or do a flight check to make sure a plane was fit to be shipped overseas. She said she often would ferry new and repaired airplanes from factories.
After being featured in a Mercury News story in July, Tucker was reunited with a long-lost family friend. Lisa Blake, 33, is the granddaughter of Louesa Thompson Beard, a fellow Airforce Service Pilot and a close friend of Tucker's who passed away 14 years ago. Blake had since lost touch with Tucker.
The two pilots had met in 1977 while organizing a registry of surviving WASP. "They were best friends for the rest of their lives," Blake said. "I was with them all the time."
In April, when it became apparent that Tucker's medal might not be coming anytime soon, Blake got her hands on a replica and presented it to Tucker in her nursing home. Tucker was amazed to receive the replica and loved the design, Blake said.
"I really felt like it was so important that she get it before she died," Blake said. "It was as though I was able to give to my grandma and to her. It was a neat experience to share that with her. It felt like I was sharing that moment with both of them."
Had the official medal ceremony in Washington taken place six months earlier, Tucker surely would have made the trip, her son said. When his mom decided not to make the trip, Gary recalled what she told him:
"I have my memories from my flying. Nothing can take that away from me."
A memorial service will be held for Tucker on Tuesday at 10 a.m. at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, 13601 Saratoga Ave. in Saratoga.
w/ photo added by Wings Across America
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Margaret Kerr Boylan died at her residence in Staunton, Va., on October 11, 2010. Mrs. Boylan, 89, lived in Washington, D.C. for 39 years until she moved to Staunton in December 2009.
respectfully posted by Nancy Parrish:
Margaret Kerr Boylan, daughter of the late Aubrey M. Kerr, Sr. and Jewel Jordan Kerr and niece of former Governor of Oklahoma, Robert Samuel Kerr, passed away on Monday, October 11, 2010.
Margaret was one of the rare young women who were members of the very first 2 classes of WASP, paying her way to Houston, Texas to enter an experimental Army Air Force flight training program in December of 1942.
While in training , the young women pilots stayed in tourist courts and traveled by cattle truck or bus to the Houston Municipal Airport, where they learned to fly military aircraft. After successfully completing the six months of training, Margaret and 43 members of her class flew to Avenger Field in Sweetwater, Texas, for the graduation ceremonies on May 28, 1943. General Hap Arnold, the Commanding General of the Army Air Forces, would soon name all the graduates of the program ‘Women Airforce Service Pilots’ (WASP).
Margaret's Army orders sent her to Romulus Army Air Base, Michigan, where she was assigned as a ferry pilot. She ferried all types of military aircraft to points of embarkation and to air bases all over America.
In August of 1944, Margaret was piloting a B-26, trying to land at Meridian, Mississippi. Her WASP co-pilot radioed in for landing instructions. According to Byrd Granger in "On Final Approach," a brusque voice came back, "Get those women out of the cockpit and then come down." After several minutes of negotiating with the tower, clearance was reluctantly granted. In the meantime, all the maintenance crews and pilots stationed at the field made their way to the flight line, to get a good look at the 'girl' pilots. When the two WASP stepped out, the male pilots and other personnel were shocked. No one on the Army air base knew what a WASP was.
Margaret was a true pioneer, a fearless flyer and an inspiration to her family and all who knew her. Today, she is flying higher indeed.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.henryfuneralhome.net.
Friday, October 8, 2010
Eloise was a native Texan, born in 1921 near Richardson, Texas, just outside of Dallas, to a family of pilots. Eloise had no choice -- she was a country girl from Texas who was born to fly.
When she had enough hours, she applied for and was accepted into the WASP training program at Avenger Field in Sweetwater, Texas on November 1, 1943. There she learned to fly the Army Air Forces military aircraft, always wearing her favorite boots.
After successfully finishing seven months of training at Avenger Field, she graduated, received her silver wings and her official orders from the Army Air Forces to report to Maxwell Field in Montgomery, Alabama, which was a B-24 repair depot. Eloise and her classmate, Millie Davidson (Dalrymple), drove to Maxwell, arriving on "D Day", June 6, 1944. They were billeted in the Nurses' Quarters across from the Officer's Club.
While at Maxwell, which her friend, Millie, called "a paradise compared to Avenger", Eloise was able to check out on a number of aircraft, including the B-24, which she flew as an engineering co-pilot. Her primary flying assignment was on slow-timing missions to ‘break in’ rebuilt or new engines on the B-24s. She was also able to qualify as first pilot on the UC-78, AT-11 and C-45.
When the WASP were disbanded, she packed her bags and paid her way back to her favorite place in all the world —TEXAS. She probably didn't pack her boots. She was probably wearing them!
I'm sorry I don't have even more information. I remember Millie Dalrymple saying that "Huffy" could fly absolutely anything with wings, as long as she had on her favorite boots.
God bless her family -- they are all in our prayers.
Respectfully posted by Nancy Parrish
Additional information from Eloise's family posted below.
Eloise is survived by her husband who has been her partner for 59 years, Ted Kenneth Bailey of Carrollton, Texas; and sons Michael Bailey of Denison, Texas; Ted Kenneth Bailey Jr. of Carrollton, Texas; and Robert Elmo Bailey of Frisco, Texas . She left behind 8 grandchildren, Scott, Jon, Jason, Ben, Shawn, Amy, Melissa and Allison and 10 great grandchildren, Ryan, Breanna, Alyssa, Kylie, Lexi, Madison, Caden, Alex, Savannah, and Ziva.
She was preceded in death by her father, Elmo Huffhines, her mother, Clyde Huffhines, four brothers and four sisters.
Visitation is on Thursday 9/07 from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Graveside service only on Friday 9/08, 1:pm
Location: Restland Funeral Home at 13005 Greeneville Ave, Dallas 75243
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Jack was born in Everman on June 18, 1923, to Gladys and Reg L. Robbins. After graduating from Arlington Heights High School in Fort Worth, Jack attended Texas Tech until Pearl Harbor.
In 1942, he became a flight instructor for the Army Air Corps in Fort Stockton. In 1943, he married Kathryn Word, rose to the rank of flight commander instructing WASPs at Sweetwater, and then joined his father in the fledgling aviation business in Houston in 1944. The two of them were instrumental in formatting Houston Executive Air Service.
Jack retired in 1983 to travel, buried Kathryn in 1984, married Bobbie Hughes in 1985 and moved to Panorama Village in 1987 to play golf and relax. He was a 62-year member of Quiet Birdmen in Houston and Conroe Hangars, member of Park Place Masonic Lodge and Arabia Shrine Temple.
Survivors: Wife, Bobbie Robbins of Conroe; son, Robin B. Robbins; daughter, Rebecca Kay Carlson, both of Fort Worth; grandson, Heath Smith-Robbins of Deer Park; stepsons, Kevin and Kim Hughes, their wives, Cindie and Gayla, and their children, Kaitlyn, Evan, Chelsie and Lexi of Albuquerque, N.M.; and sister, Jeanene Connor of Wimberley.
Published in Fort Worth Star-Telegram on October 6, 2010
Thursday, September 30, 2010
Born in Bethesda, Maryland, Patricia was the daughter of Capt. and Mrs. J.P. Collins. She attended George Washington University and later worked as a draftsman with the Army Air Forces at Bolling Field for two years. During World War II, while her father served in the US Marines in the Pacific Theatre, Patricia learned to fly and built up her flying time to over 65 hours, eventually applying to enter the WASP.
Patricia was accepted into Army Air Force flight training, paying her own way from Washington, DC to Sweetwater, Texas, where the 2563rd Army Air Forces Base Unit was located. She and 135 other young women pilots arrived just ahead of a blue norther on January 7, 1944. Overnight, the temperature dropped 35 degrees and the west Texas wind dumped two feet of snow on the new arrivals.
After seven months of AAF flight training, on August 4, 1944, Patricia and 75 other members of her class successfully completed training and earned their silver WASP wings. The high that day was 104.
After graduating, Patrica was sent to Foster Army Air Field in Victoria, Texas, just off the Gulf Coast. Foster was an advanced training base, where the WASP would have flown training missions in AT-6's, as well as instrument instruction, administrative and ferrying missions. Selected WASP at Foster also towed targets in AT-6's to help train Mexican fighter pilots in air-to-air gunnery.
Over thirty years after her service as a WASP, Patricia stepped forward again, this time to help fight for WASP Veteran status. As the WASP Militarization Committee began their lobbying efforts in Washington, DC, Patricia began writing a column in the Stars and Stripes that spelled out the struggle and spoke the truth.
In her column entitled "11 Bills Pending for Veterans Status," in the September 1, 1977 edition of Stars and Stripes, Patricia laid out a simple argument: "The crux of the current argument against militarization apparently is that the WASP do not meet the VA definition of veterans despite the fact that they were sworn in and served as part and parcel of the military, because a formal SOP discharge was never issued. They were disbanded, ergo, they were not categorized as veterans and can not be considered as meeting the veteran definition."
"Gentlemen and gentlewomen, that's what we've been saying for 33 years! That's why we are STILL petitioning! Your predecessors dumped us ingloriously. We kept our commitment up to the letter of our sworn oath ... they wrote us off as if we never existed. Give us a discharge based on the criteria used to qualify men for a discharge during the same war in the same MOS and the argument is settled."
As Molly Merryman wrote in "Clipped Wings,' "Besides providing details about the 1944 bid for militarization, congressional hearings, and subsequent disbandment of the WASP program, Hughes's columns also provided detailed updates about activities on Capitol Hill." During the committee hearings, Patricia Hughes fearless reporting 'outed' the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee and Chair, Senator Alan Cranston, for deliberate delay of the WASP bill. She also quoted a Veterans Administration representative stating that President Carter had specifically ordered him to testify against the bill and publicized a statement by Rep. Herbert Roberts, Chair of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs, that "I will never let this bill come out of Committee."
Thanks to Patricia and many other WASP champions, the Women Airforce Service Pilots were finally awarded the veteran status they had earned. Thirty three years later, on March 10, 2010, Patricia, dressed proudly in her WWII Santiago blue WASP uniform, along with over 175 WASP, was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal, highest civilian award -- to an overflow crowd of over 2,500 -- largest gathering inside the capitol in history.
Thanks to an opportunity given to her by the Stars and Stripes, her legacy lives on as a shining example of what one woman can do when she believes it is the right thing and she puts her mind to it.
WASP Patricia Collins Hughes did just that. It is on the record.
Respectfully posted by Nancy Parrish
Sept. 30, 2010
Following information was sent by Patrica's family and posted online at the Journal News:
Patricia Collins Hughes, 86, of Charles Town, WV, departed this life on September 29, 2010. She was Managing Editor of Stars and Stripes newspaper, Director of Flight Safety, AOPA, Director of Flight Safety, Flight Safety Foundation. She was a graduate of McKinley Tech, Washington, D.C., class of 1942; and of the U.S. Coast Guard SARS School.
During WWII Patricia joined the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP), graduating class 44-W-6. Awarded Congressional Gold Medal in 2010. She was a major in the Civil Air Patrol. She also served as a volunteer of St. James Roman Catholic Church, Charles Town; and a member of the West Virginia Gabriel Project. She was 15 years active in local Harpers Ferry river clean-ups and environmental awareness and was a founding member of the Potomac Chapter Canoe Safety Patrol. Mrs. Hughes was an accomplished commercial and fine artist. Also she was the owner of Hughes Studios Writer.
She is survived by sons, Michael Hughes, of Wardensville; Stephen Hughes and wife, Kristina Anttila, of New York, N.Y., Kevin Hughes, of Charles Town and Padraic Hughes and wife, Brigid, of Chevy Chase, Md.; eight grandchildren, Mary Hughes, Jesse and Jenna Anttila-Hughes, Zachary Hughes, Liam and Fergus Hughes, and Robert and Scott Dielman; and one brother, John Paul Collins, of South Carolina. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by one daughter, Carol Dielman, of Arlington, Va.; and two sisters.
Viewing on Friday, October 1 from 6 to 8 at Melvin T. Strider Colonial Funeral Home, 200 N. George Street, Charles Town, WV (304) 725-7068. Mass of Christian Burial, Saturday, October 2, 12:30 pm at St. James Catholic Church, 49 Crosswinds Drive, Charles Town, WV with interment to follow at St. Peter's Cemetery, Harpers Ferry, WV.
printed obituary online: Journal News
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Monday, September 13, 2010
in Frederick County, Maryland"
Born March 31, 1920, in Montgomery County, Maryland, Nancy was the daughter of Joseph William Clay and Grace Virginia (Warfield) Clay.
She graduated from Damascus High School and Towson State College with a B.S. in Elementary Education. She also received a Master's in Education from the University of Maryland.
Nancy took her first flying lessons in Frederick County, Maryland. After reading about Jacqueline Cochran recruiting female pilots for her experimental Women's Flying Training Program, Nancy flew the required number of hours, applied and was accepted into WASP training.
Nancy and 97 other young women pilots, paid their own way to travel to Texas, raised their right hands, took the military 'oath,' and became members of class 44-W-7. 59 of these young women graduated on September 8, 1944, and received their silver WASP Wings. After graduation, Nancy's Army Air Force orders sent her to Enid, Oklahoma, where she flew Bt-13's, BT-15's, AT-6's, PT-17's and managed to fly a few hours in a B-18.
After the WASP were deactivated, Nancy Joined the American Red Cross, trained as a staff assistant, and worked in USO canteen clubs. She was stationed briefly at Annapolis and, after physical exams and immunizations... went, via train cross-country and boarded a Victory Ship in San Francisco, California. From that point, she traveled to Ascom City with the Armed Services Command, between Inchon and Seoul, Korea.
At the end of her tour with the Red Cross, she returned home on a Victory Ship, and traveled to New London, Connecticut, where she was hired as a pilot for a textile consultant. Later, she returned to Montgomery County and to teaching.
She married Samuel Wade Magruder, and raised 2 daughters. In 1977, Nancy lost her husband. She kept busy volunteering in a local senior center and wrote 4 books, including several childrens' books.
In the mid-1990s, Nancy moved to Frostburg to be near her eldest child and grandchildren. For the past four years, she resided at Devlin Manor Health Care Center in Cumberland.
On March 10, 2010, Nancy, along with all the WASP of World War II, was awarded the CONGRESSIONAL GOLD MEDAL, the highest award Congress can bestow on a civilian -- for their groundbreaking, pioneering, patriotic service during World War II.
Respectfully posted by Nancy Parrish
from Nancy Magruder's own words, p 443 "Out of the Blue and Into History" by WASP Betty Turner.
The following reposted from the Frederick News:
Mrs. Magruder is survived by her two daughters, Barbara Arnone of Frostburg, and Katharine Magruder of Frederick; two grandchildren, Katrina Opel and Lynn Hovatter, both of Frostburg; four great-grandchildren, Seth Arnone, Dylan Hunt, Rylee Hovatter and Chase Opel. She is also survived by her sister, Hilda Wells of Sparks, Md. Nancy was also preceded in death by her husband Samuel Wade Magruder, and one sister, Ruby Purdum.
Friends were received Thursday, Sept. 9, at the Molesworth-Williams, P.A., Funeral Home, 26401 Ridge Road, Damascus. Services were held Friday, Sept. 10, at the funeral home. The Rev. Joseph Pierce officiated.
Interment was held privately at the convenience of the family in St. Mary's Church Cemetery, Rockville, Md.
The family would like to thank all of the staff at Devlin Manor for the excellent care they provided.
The family requests the omission of flowers and that contributions be made to St. Paul's Catholic Church, 9250 Damascus Road, Damascus, Md., 20872 and/or St. Michael's Catholic Church, 1200 St. Michael's Road, Mount Airy, Md, 21771.
Online condolences may be expressed to the family at molesworthwilliams.com.
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Ruth Clifford was born March 25, 1917, in Lakeland, Florida. After graduating from high school, while working as a student photographer, she took a ride in a small plane to take some aerial photographs and 'fell in love with flying’.
Ruth and her sister, Mary (WASP 43-4), learned to fly at the same time as students of Walter Haldeman. In 1942, Ruth joined the Civil Air Patrol, and, with over 450 hours of flying in her logbook, Ruth was accepted into WASP training as a member of Class 44-8.
She later wrote in her scrapbook, "training was climaxed by graduation, where we received our beautiful silver wings and Santiago blue uniforms."
After graduation, Ruth was stationed at Cochran Field, Macon, Georgia, where she flew as an engineering test pilot for AT-6's and as a maintenance pilot for slow timing engines.
After the WASP were deactivated, she returned to Lakeland and became a flight instructor at Johnson Flying Service, Winter Haven, Florida. She later moved to St. Petersburg, Florida, where she flew as a flight instructor at US Airlines. While in St. Petersburg, she married Peter Hubert, one of the founders of US Airlines, and an Army Air Forces veteran pilot—Pacific Theatre.
In the mid 1940's Ruth was Chairman of the Florida Chapter of Ninety-Nines and helped stage the first "All Women Air Show” in Tampa, Florida, March 1947. Many WASP participated in the show and went on to fly in the First Transcontinental Air Race for Women (later named the Powder Puff Derby) from Palm Springs, California to Tampa, Florida.
She participated in other air shows and assisted Pete in the operation of US Air's flight school before retiring to raise their two children, Clifford and Linda.
After loosing her husband, Pete, in 1963, Ruth became an active pilot in the CAP and remained active until the mid 1990's, earning the rank of Lt. Colonel. She served as Commander of the Pinellas Senior Squadron for six years and worked in the emergency services flying activities as a mission pilot and observer, participating in many searches for missing aircraft.
Ruth flew as a part-time corporate pilot for a large development corporation from 1978 to 1983. At 80, she was still flying and had logged over 2,300 hours. As she wrote in 2001, "My aviation career has been long, interesting and very rewarding."
Respectfully posted by Nancy Parrish-- with thanks to WASP Betty Turner's, "Out of the Blue and Into History" and The St. Petersburg Times.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION SENT VIA EMAIL:
Ruth is preceded in death by her husband, Peter, and leaves behind her son Clifford, daughter Linda, granddaughter Samantha Hubert, grandson Patrick Benson, Nancy Benson and great granddaughter Bridget Ruth Benson.
All are invited to join in a Celebration of Ruth’s life on Sept ll from 2-4 PM at the Hangar Restaurant at Albert Whitted Airport in Downtown St. Pete. Casual dress, please. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the charity of your choice.
“Goodbye, Ruthie. Now, with Pete at your side, ‘Off you go into the wild blue yonder.’ “
Friday, September 3, 2010
|J.C. Pace, Advance Flight Commander, 318th AAFFTD|
When bloody war and urgent need for haste is gone,
And economic chaos holds us still,
We shall not soon forget his shape along the street,
Or near the half-deserted hangars on the hill.
His shoulders forward bent against the weight of wind and 'chutes
The lagging step to match his slow, insistent word,
The wisdom and the patience on his face,
The pride behind the stinging comment that we heard.
We shall remember well the scarf he wore
Of white silk stuff, the juanty cap which set him quite apart,
His summer's tan, his winter pinks,
The fleece-lined hood and other heavy trappings of his art.
But do not think he will be loath to go--for look!
Beyond the steady gaze of his blue eyes
His heart is fastened on some lovely, distant dream,
Some fairer view than sandy Texas skies.
( WASP Classbook 43- 4/5)
Although I never had the opportunity to meet him, WASP Flight Instructor, J.C. Pace, was a name that made 'folks' in West Texas smile when they heard it. His kindness and generosity to the place and the people were part of his personality--and the mark of a true 'Texas Gentleman'. The young women, whom he instructed in flying military aircraft at Avenger Field, who then graduated and became WASP, remember how much he loved to fly! Today, he is truly flying higher.
To Gary and the whole Pace family, including Brenda, may our prayers and God's amazing love surround you all.
v/r posted by nancy parrish
The following reposted from the Fort Worth Star Telegram
J.C. Pace Jr., co-founder of Buddies Super Markets and Fort Worth civic leader, dies at 93
Thursday, September 2, 2010
Jo was born in Great Falls, Montana on September 24, 1919. She called Great Falls "a hotbed of stunt fliers, crop dusters, barnstormers and flight schools”. She and her brother paid $2 and took a ride in an airplane that changed their lives. (Jo later said it may have been the goggles and scarves.)
After successfully soloing and flying enough hours to get her pilot’s license, Jo then completed the required minimum of 35 hours and applied for, and was accepted into, the WASP’ flying training program as a member of class 44-W-1. After completing 7 months of training, she, along with 48 other young women pilots, graduated, received their silver wings, and became WASP! Class 44-1 was the first class to wear the Santiago Blue WASP dress uniform! They also wore gloves at their graduation. Jo’s graduation day was one of the coldest February's in West Texas history!
After graduation, Jo was sent to Dodge City, Kansas to the Army Air Base to learn to fly the B-26 Martin Marauder. After successfully completing the transition training, she was stationed at Pueblo Army Air Base, Colorado, a combat training base. There, she flew both the B-26 & UC-78. She ferried cargo, personnel, and aircraft; towed targets, and flew simulated dive-bombing runs at B-24's.
After the WASP were deactivated, Jo applied to several airline companies for a job. They were not hiring female pilots. Without success, she returned to Billings, Montana, where she was an instructor, flew, and typed her way to her next job: wife and mother.
Jo married a ‘bush’ pilot from Alaska named Ken Swift. She and Ken had three children. When Ken passed away, Jo worked six years doing market research at Boeing. She then opened an IFG Leasing Company in Anchorage, Alaska.
Eventually, Jo returned to Seattle, later moving to Port Townsend, to be closer to her family.
Jo is survived by her three children, many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
(There is no information available regarding services.)
|Tech Sgt. Normand and WASP Josephine Swift in front of the Capitol|
The last time I saw Jo was in Washington. She was smiling from the inside out, wearing her WASP beret as only she could--just a little taller than most!
Jo had come to DC to attend the Congressional Gold Medal Ceremony. I was looking forward to seeing her, because, just a few months before, she had called my cell at just the right moment. I was waiting in Sen. Hutchison's hallway between meetings regarding the Bill to award the WASP the Congressional Gold Medal. I had never met or talked to Jo before, but I was thrilled to be able to tell her first-hand 'what was happening' in Washington. I could hear her smiling!
Although I didn't get to spend much time with her at the ceremony, I was honored to know her. Her sparkling spirit was contagious. Perhaps this article says it better than I ever could: http://www.northwestmilitary.com
A very special moment happened after the ceremony was over, on the steps of the Capitol, when Jo's escort, Tech Sgt. Heather Normand, presented Jo her replica Gold Medal in front of 17 members of her family!
Respectfully written and posted by Nancy Parrish
Sept. 2, 2010
M2W First Women Award
Monday, August 30, 2010
She was born Lisabeth Ann Morgan on March 26, 1921 in Indianapolis, Indiana. In 1941, Ann became interested in flying and signed up for the CPT (Civilian Pilot Training) course at Butler University, where she learned to fly.
Following her WASP graduation, Ann was assigned by the AAF to Mather Air Force Base, Sacramento, California for B-25 transition. After successfully completing the transition training, she was then transferred to March AFB, California, where she flew the B-25 as a tow-target pilot.
On 20 December 1944 the WASP were disbanded. After the deactivation, Ann ‘hitched’ a ride on a B-17 leaving San Diego, California and got as far as Topeka, Kansas. The trip was a fond memory, because she was able to take the pilot’s seat for the last military flying she ever did.
15 years after her first husband’s death, Ann met and married Harry Hazzard, businessman and great supporter of the WASP. Harry and Ann traveled to most of the WASP Reunions, with Harry serenading the WASP with his mellow baritone, ‘big-band’ voice and wife, Ann, standing close by, always smiling quietly.
In March, 2010, Ann and Harry traveled to DC so she could be a part of the Congressional Gold Medal ceremony. Harry was by her side, smiling.
On April 6, 2010, Ann and Harry Hazzard celebrated their 36th wedding anniversary.
Ann and Harry made their home near Pharr, Texas, where they owned and operated an RV park, "Holiday Village," part of the year. They built another home outside Hot Springs Arkansas, where they spent the other part of the year.
Ann was a member of Zion Lutheran Church of Alamo. She is survived by her husband, Harry Hazzard; her children, Joseph William Staples of San Antonio and Georgeanne Nell of Daleville, Alabama; her two step-children, Ed Schneider of Hot Springs, Ariz, and Susan Pratt of Lake Whitney, Texas; sister Judy Campbell of Indianapolis, Ind; seven grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.
In February of 2009, when our family was trying to plan for a very expensive trip to DC to attend the WASP Gold Medal Ceremony, Harry Hazzard kindly came forward and made it possible for all of us to stay together at a reasonable rate. His thoughtfulness and kindness will never be forgotten! He and Ann were a team. It is hard to remember them any other way. We will be forever grateful for their kindness.
Our prayers are with Harry and the entire family.
Respectfully posted by Nancy Parrish
With references to online obituary and WASP Betty Turner's "Out of the Blue and Into History"
She was born March 25, 1920 in New York City the daughter of Charles Dempsey Donahue and Matilda Higgins Donahue. Barbara attended Spence School, Ethel Walker School and Vassar College.
She was an original member of the Women’s Auxiliary Ferrying Squadron (WAFS). She later became the commanding Officer of the Women’s Airforce Service Pilots (WASPS) at Romulus Army Air Base in Michigan.
On November 22, 1946 she married Captain Howard Ross. In December 1950, Captain and Mrs. Ross purchased Acorn Farm in Warrenton where they raised a family and ran a dairy operation.
During those years Miz Ross/Donnie was an avid horse enthusiast, fox hunter and active supporter of community activities. Beginning in the mid-1980s, Granmom became a super soccer fan for each of her grandchildren. Family and friends will remember her for her generosity, hospitality, kindness, high spirits, sense of fun, grand gestures, courage, grace under pressure and sense of humor.
Barbara was preceded in death by her husband and a daughter, Barbara Mildred Ross. She is survived by a son, Charles Ross, and two daughters, Patricia Drunagel and Helen Ford, all of Warrenton, and seven grandchildren.
A private family service will be held on Acorn Farm. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that contributions be sent to either the Americans for Immigration Control, P.O. Box 738 Monterey, VA 24465-0738, Fauquier SPCA, P.O. Box 733, Warrenton, VA 20188, the Nature Conservancy, 4245 North Fairfax Drive, Suite 100, Arlington, VA 22203-1606 or to the charity of your choice.
Respectfully reposted from the Moser Funeral Home site.
Aug. 30, 2010
Never having the opportunity to interview Mary, I respectfully submit the following few bits and pieces of information put together from different resources.
Mary Louise Burch Nirmaier was born Dec. 12, 1920 in Valley Mills, a small town in the heart of Texas, where many of her family still live.
Mary's earliest recollections of airplanes were of her entire family running outside every time they heard an airplane overhead. She grew up in Valley Mills, Texas and graduated from high school in 1938. She then moved to Washington D.C.
As America began preparing for World War II, both of her brothers joined the Army Air Forces and served their country. Her brother Kenny was a navigator in a B-17 and her brother Wilbur was an engineer on a B-24.
Mary wanted to contribute. She learned of a small airport in Virginia that was giving women the opportunity to learn to fly, so she paid her own way to take the 70-mile trip on the ‘milk train’ every Sunday morning. She learned to fly on a rolling pasture in Virginia in a Piper Cub airplane.
After joining an airplane club and accumulating the required number of hours of flying time, Mary applied to enter the Army Air Forces flight training program for women. After meeting the requirements and having a personal interview with one of Ms. Jacqueline Cochran’s staff, she was accepted for training.
In November of 1944, Mary traveled to Avenger Field in Sweetwater, Texas and entered the program. On June 27, 1944, after 7 months of flight training, she earned her silver WASP wings, graduated as a member of Class 44-5, and became a WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots).
Her Army Air Force orders sent her to Douglas AFB, Arizona, where she flew as an engineering test pilot. In addition, she flew both utility and administrative flights.
While stationed at Douglas, Mary checked out in the B-25 Mitchell bomber as a first pilot by the Air Force pilot who had flown the B-25 off the deck of the carrier in the movie "Thirty seconds over Tokyo." In August, she married Lt. Clayton Nirmaier, who was also stationed at Douglas.
Mary flew her last flight as a WASP in a B-25 bomber and fondly remembered flying the 100 mile Arizona valley between towering 12 thousand foot mountains on either side, listening to big-band music. On December 20, 1944, the WASP were disbanded.
In 1947 Mary joined the Air Force Reserves and served for the next 20 years. During that time she also served as Press Secretary for U.S. Rep. John Breckinridge of Kentucky and worked for both the United Press International and the St. Louis Globe-Democrat. She later worked at Harvard Business School and Rockefeller Institute for University Presidents.
Mary was the proud mother of four children and earned a BA in journalism (1955) and an MA in communications research (1971) from the University of Missouri.
On March 10, 2010, Capt. USAFR (Ret), WASP Mary Nirmair attended the ceremony in Washington, DC to award the WASP the Congressional Gold Medal. She sat on the second row, proudly wearing her Air Force uniform and her WASP wings as she and over 175 of her fellow WASP who were present, and the other WASP who were not present, were awarded the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest honor Congress can bestow on a civilian. The next day, she was welcomed home at Columbia Regional Airport by a crowd of cheering and applauding "Salute to Veterans" volunteers.
Mary always wore her uniform to all military functions near her home in Columbia, MO. She was proud to be both a retired Air Force Reservist and a WASP. She was also proud of both of her brothers, Sgt. Wilbur V Burch & Lt. Col. Kenneth Burch, who served during both WWII & the Korean War. A very patriotic family! Amerian flags fly proudly over the family ranch.
More information will be added as it is available.
V/R posted by Nancy Parrish
Complied from THE MIZZOU ALUMNI ASSOCIATION, FALL, 2010; The Columbia Tribune; The Missourian; the Waco Tribune Herald and Mary's facebook page.
Aug. 30, 2010
Friday, August 27, 2010
Bethel was born on July 2, 1921, the third of 11 children. The Haven family worked a seed farm in Santa Ana, California, with brothers and sisters helping with the chores and enjoying the beautiful countryside of Orange County.
Bethel's love of flying was sparked at age nineteen, when she signed up for aviation classes at Santa Ana College while her fiance was stationed at Santa Ana Army Air Base. Shortly after learning to fly, she married Tom Gibbons.
After Tom was shipped off to war, Bethel kept flying, and eventually learned about the WASP 'experimental flying training program' from a telegram she received from the Army Air Forces.
|This priceless photo, from Bethel's scrapbook, |
shows the proud WASP in her Santiago Blue uniform,
standing with her sister, Eleanor.
After graduation, she was stationed at Love Field in Dallas, Texas, as a ferry pilot. She had the opportunity to fly the Ryan, Piper Cub, Taylorcraft, PT-19, PT-17, BT-13, UC-78, AT-6, PQ-6, PQ-12, and A-24. She took additional instrument training at Sweetwater and was reassigned to Clovis Army Air Field, New Mexico.
After the WASP were deactivated, Bethel flew for an Oregon firm, ferrying red-lined aircraft.
Once her husband returned from overseas, she gave up flying and became the mother of 3 children (3 boys and one girl). She spent many hours volunteering for Cub Scouts, PTA and her church.
Later, Bethel worked as a legal secretary for 22 years, retiring in 1984, at which time she became an active volunteer in the Santa Ana Ebell women's group.
Like so many of these unique women pilots, after the WASP were disbanded, Bethel returned to civilian life, became a wife and a mother and was always proud of her service as a WASP. When asked, she generously shared her experiences with children and church groups.
When Congress granted the WASP veteran's status in 1978, she received an honorable discharge from the Army Air Forces. In 2001, Bethel Gibbons was inducted into the Santa Ana College Hall of Fame. On March 10, 2010, together with her WASP peers, Bethel was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest honor the Congress of the United States can award to a civilian.
On May 8, 2010, she was honored by the Katuktu Chapter of the Toastmaster's and on June 15, 2010 Bethel was the subject of a feature article in the Orange County Register.
Bethel is survived by 3 children and many grandchildren and great grandchildren.
In researching information on Bethel, I found a message which I believe captures the heart of this wonderful WASP.
The following was posted on the Orange County Register website on June 16, 2010:
"Many years ago, when I was just 19, I worked in a law office with Beth. She must have been around 43 at the time. She was an inspiration even then. To think she had been a WASP and a pilot was amazing to me..even in the 60's. But more than that, she was a very lovely and gracious woman. And very kind to a very inexperienced young girl."God bless all of those who lives she touched and to her family, our heartfelt prayers.
v/r posted by Nancy Parrish
"From Santa Ana farm girl to WWII pilot"
by David Whiting
Article on the Orange County Register June 15, 2010
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Doris was born to Marie Todd Bristol and Vern Bristol in St. Joseph, Missouri on March 6, 1920. Her love of flying began at an early age: "I was nine years old, and my father had a friend that had a bi-plane. He took my sister and me for our first ride. From there on, I just had to learn how to fly." A few years later: "When I was in grade school, we had to write a paper on what you wanted to do when you grew up. .Of course, they were called 'aviatrixes' then, so that was what I wrote on. I wanted to be one of those!"
After the family moved to Marible, Missouri, Doris and her sister, Bernice, entered college. Doris signed up as the second girl on the list for CPT (Civilian Pilot Training). Since they could only sign up one girl for every nine boys, she had to wait to enter the training program. While she waited, she went to the air field and watched the students as they flew and sat in on the ground school classes. Eventually the instructor let her complete the training course. Doris was delighted that her first passenger, after she earned her license, was her dad!
When Doris learned about the WASP training program, she applied and was immediately accepted into class 43-4; however, she had to wait a few weeks, because she went home 'to break the news' to her mom and dad.
Doris took the train to Avenger Field in Sweetwater, Texas. When she arrived, she joined 123 other young women pilots as a member of class 43-5. After completing the nearly 7 months of training, 85 members of her class had earned their wings, so they graduated and became WASP. After graduation, Doris served briefly at Love Field, Dallas, Texas. She was then transferred to Lockbourne Air Force Base in Columbus, Ohio, but was soon transferred to Columbus Army Air Base in Columbus, Mississippi. There she flew engineering flight tests in AT-10's. Her last station was at Casper, Wyoming, where she flew as co-pilot on B-24's and administrative flights in the C-45. She was the only WASP stationed at Casper.
After the WASP were disbanded, Doris moved with her family to La Veta, Colorado to help her family open the ‘Gamble Store.' Although she had only planned to stay until the store was ‘up and running’, she met Julian Tracy at a dance and, as she put it, 'we just kept dancing and dancing.’ They married in 1946 immediately following the Sunday service at the La Veta Baptist Church.
The Tracy's raised their 2 daughters in La Veta. When they entered school, Doris spent time as a PTA mom. In addition to making the candy for the school candy sales , she ran both the store and the house, served on the Board of Directors of the Francisco Fort Museum, and was active in the Eastern Star. Any excess time she ever had, she spent enjoying her hobby--combing the nearby Colorado hills for arrowheads and artifacts,
|Wings Across America Interview, Sept, 2000|
|Congressional Gold Medal Ceremony|
March, 10, 2010
On March 10, 2010, Doris was in attendance at the US Capitol in Washington, DC, as the WASP were awarded the Congressional Gold Medal. The smile on her face was priceless. So many years later, to be honored and thanked by the country she had served -- her joy just spilled out.
Our most heartfelt prayers for her family and those who loved her. She was another 'one-of-a-kind' who touched our hearts. Knowing her was a joy and an honor.
Respectfully submitted by Nancy Parrish
Aug. 2, 2010
*the following re-posted from The Signature Nuwspaper, La Veta, Colorado. David Rinehart, Publisher:
Doris is survived by her daughters Glenna Lee (Mondello Walstrom) Tracy and Julie (Chub) Geiser of Alamosa; her grandchildren: Scott (Amanda) Geiser, Tim (Yahaira) Geiser, Jenny (Wayne) Peil, Russell (Annalee) Hickey, and Morgan Walstrom; her great-grandchildren Cameron, Abby and Ashlyne Geiser.
Doris is preceded in death by her parents, husband and sister Bernice Hayes.
Cremation was chosen and a Graveside Service will be held 2:00 P.M. Tuesday, August 3, 2010 at the La Veta Cemetery in La Veta, CO. In lieu of flowers, contributions are suggested to the WASP Memorial in La Veta in her memory, and may be made through the funeral home office.
Rogers Family Mortuary of Alamosa is in care of the arrangements.
Monday, August 2, 2010
CARRUTH, BEVERLY F. of San Diego Aug. 2, 1922 - July 19, 2010 7/30 2pm at San Carlos United Methodist, 6554 Cowles Mtn. Featheringill Mortuary (619) 583-9511
Published in San Diego Union-Tribune on July 26, 2010
Additional information from Scott Ferguson:
Beverly Frisbie Carruth WASP 44-7
Beverly passed away peacefully at home on 7-19-2010.
A memorial service was held on Friday, 7-30- 2010 at 2:00 PM
San Marcos United Methodist Church
6554 Cowles Mountain Blvd San Diego, CA
Funeral service will be held on Thursday, 9-23-2010 at 12:00 PM Fort Rosecran's National Cemetery San Diego, CA
Beverly was only of only 1,074 women who completed Army Air Force flight training and became a WASP. She entered training from Highland Park, IL as one of 103 trainees of Class 44-7. 59 young women graduated on September 8, 1944. The Big Spring Bombardier School Band played as the trainees passed in review for the graduates. Lt. Col. Roy P. Ward, the CO of the 2563rd AAFBU (Army Air Force Base Unit) was the speaker for the graduation ceremony.
After graduation, Beverly received Army Air Force orders and was sent to Douglas Army Air Field in Douglas Arizona to the 3014th AFBU. There, she flew as a utility, administrative and engineering test pilot. Aircraft she might have flown included the BT-14, AT-8, UC-78, AT-17 and B-25.
If you knew Beverly, or would like to post a message to her family, please fill out the box below.
Thank you for caring.
God watch over her family.
Respectfully posted Aug. 3, 2010
Information from WASP Bryd Granger's "On Final Approach"
Sunday, June 27, 2010
WASP ENID CLIFFORD FISHER, CLASS 43-6
1917 - 2010
Born on January 15, 1917 in Everett, Washington, Enid Clifford was determined she would learn to fly. Even as a small child, she kept telling her parents she wanted to learn. They promised her she could take lessons after she graduated from high school. Then, her parents decided that Enid should finish college first.
After graduating from Oregon State University, while working as a model and hostess in the gown shop of a large department store in Portland, Enid answered an ad in the paper for a program sponsored by the U.S. government for a Civilian Pilot Training Program. She signed up for the program, going to ground school classes at night. She borrowed her dad's car to get to the airport to earn her flying hours.
In October of 1941, Enid married Donald Moore Fisher. Early in 1943, she learned of the Women Airforce Service Pilots program. After her husband was deployed with the Navy Corps of Engineers, Enid applied for the training program and was accepted into class 43-6.
She paid her own way to travel to Sweetwater, Texas from Oregon, and, along with 83 other young women pilots, graduated from training on October 9, 1943. Her Army Air Force orders sent her to Long Beach to the Ferry Command. She was then transferred to St. Jo, Missouri for instrument training then to Brownsville, Texas, where she completed transition training for the P-39, P-40, P-47 and P-51. Her next assignment was to deliver P-51's from the west coast to the east coast. After completing transition training for the P-63, she delivered P-63's from the plant in Buffalo, NY to Montana.
Once her husband returned to the states, the couple moved to Salem, Oregon in 1945 and started their family. After completing her elementary teacher certification, Enid taught third and fourth grades for several years, and then, for the next ten years, taught Spanish to sixth graders, traveling daily to 10 schools, three times a week.
Enid spent several summers in Mexico, taking college courses and living with local families. In 1976, she earned a Master's Degree in Extreme Learning Problems.
From 1977 to 1998, Enid and her husband traveled extensively in the US, Canada and Europe.
(above posting taken from Enid's own words, published in Betty Turner's book, "Out of the Blue and Into History")
|WASP Enid Fisher's hand prints, 2005|
Respectfully submitted by Nancy Parrish
June 26, 2010
Thursday, June 24, 2010
August 27, 1917 - June 14, 2010
Carol led a life of exciting challenges, from flying for her country in WWII as a WASP and later with the Civil Air Patrol for search and rescue, to leading Girl Scouts on canoe trips down the Colorado and Green rivers, to riding motorcycles in middle age, to driving her van across country and her ATV around the Arizona desert in her 80’s. She led a life of service and caring for others that included raising her family, running PTAs, social work with foster children, and most recently watching out for other residents at Maravilla in her 90’s. She was fearless, fun loving, inclusive and adaptable, with a generous heart and deep faith.
Carol Elizabeth Wheeler was born on August 27, 1917 in Grand Junction, CO, moving to Arcadia, CA with her family at age 6. She married Mark James Brinton in 1938, eventually settling in Redondo Beach, CA in 1948. When Jim died in 1965, she moved to the Sacramento area, going back to college to earn a BA, and becoming a social worker for Placer County. In 1972 she married Glenn Selfridge and later moved to Burnt Ranch, CA where she helped organize a volunteer fire and rescue department. Glenn died in 1995 and she later moved to Salome Arizona and then to Santa Barbara in 2006.
|Carol at the Congressional Gold Medal Ceremony|
Washington, DC March 10, 2010
The memorial service will be at the First Congregational Church, 2101 State Street, Santa Barbara on Friday, July 2, 2010 at 2 pm.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in Carol’s name to either the First Congregational Church or to LifeChronicles, PO Box 31152, Santa Barbara, CA 93130.
Submitted by Carol's daughter, Sharon Kayser
Additional text is from an email sent by Carol's daughter, Sharon.
Besides the thrill of being in Washington for the Gold Medal Ceremony and all the hoopla and celebration that followed, she got to meet and play with her youngest great-grandson the first week of June and had a wonderful visit from my older sister and her family on Saturday, June 12th.
It has been a wonderful experience to be able to honor her while she was still with us. Even though she downplayed the importance of all of this, she really loved every minute of it. When we came home from Washington she declared that she would not give any more talks, enough was enough. However, when a teacher friend asked if she might speak to his classes, she jumped at the chance, saying "Oh, I love to talk to kids!" So in late May she spoke to a double class of AP history students at Carpinteria High - they just ate it up, and she glowed with the special attention. They had just sent her a beautiful big thank you card they had made and all signed.
When we took her the Pentagon Channel DVD, we sat and watched it with her and then she had a group of her friends come into her apartment for a showing. One of her friends at the facility, a male WWII pilot who became her biggest cheerleader, brought us a copy of the LA Times online article, telling us what a special friend she was "we had so much to talk about.