Friday, January 25, 2013

Emily Porter Kline, 44-1 Dec. 20, 2012

Emily Kline, longtime Kinnelon resident who flew for military during WWII, dies at 92

Thursday, December 20, 2012    Last updated: Thursday December 20, 2012, 10:12 AM

The Record
Emily Kline, among a select group of patriotic women who flew military aircraft during World War II, died Friday. The former Kinnelon resident was 92.

"At first everybody thought we were a joke," Mrs. Kline said in a 2004 interview with the Star-Ledger. She was referring to the Women's Airforce Service Pilots, or WASPs.
"Eventually we earned the respect of the people who mattered: other pilots."
The volunteer WASPs — there were 1,074 — flew all types of planes for the Army Air Forces, filling in stateside for male pilots sent to combat. They are considered pioneers now but were treated as second-class at the time. The women stitched their own uniforms and paid their own way to training bases.

Mrs. Kline, then Emily Porter, learned to fly while working as a secretary for Sinclair Flying Service in Muskegon, Mich. She spent a good deal of her WASP tenure as an engineering test pilot at an Army air base in Greenville, Miss., said Nancy Parrish, director of Wings Across America, a multimedia and digital history project devoted to the WASP.  Parrish, whose mother, Deanie Parrish, served in Mississippi with Mrs. Kline, estimated that 200 to 230 members are still living.

The WASPs gained military veteran status in 1977 and were awarded the Congressional Gold Medal in 2010 at the Capitol. Mrs. Kline attended the ceremony and displayed her medal in her living room.
KLINE"She was thrilled the WASPs had finally gotten recognition from the government," her son Thomas said.

Mrs. Kline lived in Kinnelon for 45 years and worked in her husband Charles' marketing consultant firm. Charles Kline died in 1992.

"At 82, when most people downsize, Mom decided to supersize, so she sold her home in Kinnelon and purchased a 100-acre farm in Frelinghuysen Township," her son said. "In part, she was trying to get back to her roots — she grew up on a farm — but she liked the open space and tranquility of Warren County."
Mrs. Kline managed the production of hay but contracted out the heavy work.

She is survived by her children, Philip Kline of Downingtown, Pa., John Kline of Calgary, Alberta, Caroline Sassone of Easton, Pa., and Thomas Kline of Kinnelon; a brother, Daniel Porter, of Bayfield, Colo.; 12 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
 respectfully reposted 1/22/13
The following addition is from WASP Betty Turner's "OUT OF THE BLUE AND INTO HISTORY"pp. 283, 284.  Emily, in her own words:
"I was born on November 8, 1920, in Polkton Township, Kent County, Michigan.... It was the Great Depression.  I graduated from a one-room schoolhouse, with an out-door pump and outhouse. There were eight in my class; only two went on to high school.  To hold on to the farm, all workable members worked.  My brother was in the CCC, my father worked for the WPA, and my mother was a practical nurse.  I was the oldest child home, thus I worked for my father doing chores and fieldwork, and for my mother, doing house chores, and proudly made homemade bread, for four years."
"After Pearl Harbor, I volunteered in the motor pool for the American Red Cross, and as a Nurses Aide in St. Mary Hospital.  One day, I decided to learn to fly.  Perhaps it was the fellow I was dating, an Air Force pilot..."
Emily went into the WASP program on August 7, 1943 as a member of class 44-W-1.  After graduation, she was assigned to Greenville Army Air Base as an engineering test pilot.  While stationed at Greenville, she had two temporary assignments: OCS (Officers Candidate School) at Orlando, Florida and an advanced instrument course taught at Avenger Field, Texas.

After the WASP were disbanded, Emily enrolled at the University of Colorado, Bolder, where she met Navy Lieutenant Charles Kline, on a blind date.  Two years later, they were married.

After loosing Charlie in April of 1992, Emily began volunteer work at her church and in 1994, for the WASP organization.  She served as Region 1 Director 1994-1996, Treasurer, 1996-1998 and Secretary 1998-2000.

God bless Emily's family and all of those who knew her.

respectfully added by
Wings Across America

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