WASP’s, WAVES and the WAR!

Posted by on November 26, 2008

The Greatest Generation is slipping away…and with it, another generation….of women who also served.

(1)

We’re not just talking about Rosie the riveter, but the women who served as nurses, pilots, mechanics and a host of other military roles in differing branches of the service from the Army to the Navy and Coast Guard!

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Symbolized to the public with special abbreviations such as WAVES and WASP’s, women fulfilled a vital role in America’s, and the Allies’, securing victory over the Axis.

While for many years we have not had a chance to hear their side, this is changing and the number of sites with detailed information is incredible.  As an example, I saw the news on military.com about the memorial site called Women In Military Service for America Memorial and it’s a very nice site, honoring those who made the sacrifice.

Too, the Texas Woman’s University Library has been working with many of these veterans to get their stories before it is too late and age takes what the war did not.  In their collections, they have an oral history of one former pilot, Irma ‘Babe’ Story.  She says this about flying the infamous B-26, a plane many male pilots at first refused to step into:

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“…They landed like a hundred, you’re lucky to get it slowed down to like a hundred and
thirty-five miles an hour; the long-wings, generally around a hundred and eighteen. But, and
they handled a little bit different in the air – you know, made it a little bit safer an airplane, too….” (4)

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Try the links below for more in-depth information, historical artifacts and history about women’s roles in World War II.  It’s a story worth knowing about!

Have a great weekend and Thanksgiving!

Links:

Wasp On The Web

FlyGirls (PBS)

Women In Military Service for America Memorial

Wings Across America

Women Air Force Service Pilots (Texas Woman’s University)

Air Force Historical Research Agency

Naval Historical Center: WAVES

Women of the WAVES

Sources:

(1-3) Nara

(4) Oral history interview with Irma Story, Women Air Force Service Pilots (Texas Woman’s University)

(5) Naval Historical Center

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