Jackie Cochran in uniform, circa 1943

Caption     Jackie Cochran in uniform, circa 1943 ww2dbase
Photographer    Unknown
Source    ww2dbaseUnited States Air Force
More on...   
WASP: Women in the WW2 US Army Air Force   Main article  Photos  
Jacqueline Cochran   Main article  Photos  
Added By C. Peter Chen
Licensing  Public Domain. According to the United States copyright law (United States Code, Title 17, Chapter 1, Section 105), in part, "[c]opyright protection under this title is not available for any work of the United States Government".

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1. Commenter identity confirmed BILL says:
8 Jun 2009 08:22:51 PM

Did you know that over 25,000 women pilots applied to join the WASP program during WWII.
Only 1,830 were accepted into training, and 1,074 would graduate and earn their wings.
During WWII, they faced Prejudice! the idea of women flying military aircraft was met with hostile reactions from men, women and even at that time the media and the military Even women who left home-making to work in defence plants, felt flying military aircraft should be left to men.
By war's end, 80% were flying missions once reserved for male pilots. They also towed artillery targets, served as test pilots and even instructed new male pilots. To few Americans know the contributions the Women Airforce Service Pilots made toward victory in WWII.
Did you know that official WASP files were sealed and inaccessible for 35 years.
The War Department disbanded the WASP when victory in Europe was certain.
It took 22 years before the WASP were officially classified as members of the Air Force.
It wasn't until 1977 that they won the right to some, but far from all of the benefits of their male counterparts.
In 2002-57 years later the WASP won the right to be buried in Arlington National Cemetery with honors.
It is almost a crime that the WASP had to wait so long to be recognized as the heroes they are. Despite the hardships and hostility, the 1,074 Women Airforce Service Pilots produced an amazing record of achievements:
They were the only group of pilots to fly every type of military aircraft in WWII. They logged over 60,000,000 miles of opernational flights. They delivered 12,650 aircraft over 50% of all the aircraft built in the United States in that time. In just 2 years, the WASP won the respect of their critics.
As the cultural memory of World War II fades faster with each new generation, the sacrifices of the GREATEST GENERATION should never, ever forgotten.
Below are typical answers from high school students in a 2007 survey to test their knowledge of World War II history:

Richard Nixon was president during World War II.

America fought World War II to end raceism.

Mussolini was president of Russia.

Mexico and Canada were enemies of the Allies
By war's end 38 WASP had died in the line of duty. The families received no death benefits from the Government. If necessary all the WASP's would chip in to pay for burial.. One WASP pilot Ann Baumgartner became the only women test pilot, to fly the Bell YP-59- the first U.S. jet fighter.
The B-29 Superfortress had a bad reputation, but Colonel Paul Tibbets in charge of B-29 training said to his crews "If a women can fly it, anyone can fly it" the WASP flew the B-29 by the book! word of these women B-29 pilots spread like wildfire. The male B-29 crews trained for the job they had to do, and learned to fly the B-29. Today fewer than 400 of the original 1,074 WASP are still with us they are in the late 80's. At the World War II date base, the WASP legacy should be rememered. I have preserved the achievements of these extraordinary women.

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