By Sarah Byrn Rickman
She flew the quick P-51 and the capricious P-38, however the heavy, four-engine B-17 bomber and C-54 delivery have been her strong point. this is often the tale of Nancy Harkness Love who, early in international struggle II, recruited and led the 1st team of twenty-eight girls to fly army plane for the U.S. military. while the USA entered global conflict II, the military wanted pilots to move or "ferry" its combat-bound airplane around the usa for abroad deployment and its coach airplanes to flight education bases. Male pilots have been in brief provide, so into this vacuum stepped Nancy Love and her Women's Auxiliary Ferrying Squadron (WAFS). in the beginning the military carried out either the WAFS software and Jacqueline Cochran's extra formidable plan to coach ladies to do a number of the military's flight-related jobs stateside. through 1943, common Hap Arnold made up our minds to mix the women's courses and shaped the ladies Airforce provider Pilots (WASP), with Cochran because the Director of girls Pilots. Love was once named the administrative for WASP. Nancy Love urged the Ferrying department, which was once a part of the Air delivery Command, as to the simplest use in their civilian WASP ferry pilots. She supervised their allocation and air-training application. by means of instance, Love received the correct for girls ferry pilots to transition into more and more complicated airplanes. She looked at on twenty-three assorted army plane and have become the 1st girl to fly a number of of them, together with the B-17 Flying castle. Her international conflict II occupation ended on a excessive observe: following a general's orders, she piloted an immense C-54 military delivery over the fabled China-Burma-India "Hump," the the most important airlift direction over the Himalayas. younger ladies serving this day as strive against pilots owe a lot to like for developing the chance for ladies to serve. Now writer Sarah Byrn Rickman, aviation historian, offers the 1st full-length biography of Nancy Love and her position within the WAFS and WASP courses. Her publication will entice all with a love of flight.
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Extra info for Nancy Love And The WASP Ferry Pilots Of World War II (North Texas Military Biography and Memoir)
She used the time to work on her transport license and to get in a lot of flying. And some of that flying was social as well as building time. Nancy’s good friend and fel- Learning to Fly 21 low pilot Alice Hirschman lived in the Detroit suburb of Grosse Pointe Park and Nancy visited Alice on several occasions between February and August 1933. She and Alice, in fact, spent Nancy’s nineteenth birthday flying two Kinner Birds from Gratiot Airport (later Detroit City Airport) to Selfridge Field in neighboring Macomb County for lunch.
Since all three were young women pilots, flying was the common denominator of most conversations. One night, Tommy relates, “we all got in about the same time, very late, from our dates and nightclub visits. We talked awhile and then decided to go to Roosevelt Field and fly as soon as the sun was up. Flying made women comrades in the same way that men can be 26 Nancy Love and the WASP Ferry Pilots of World War II comrades, but women seldom are. ”3 Observations like this would also come out of the WASP experience ten years later.
Learning to Fly 9 Teenage Nancy and her horse, Daisy. Courtesy Love family; electronic image NAHF. asked her to point out her house and then promptly buzzed the rambling Victorian home at 253 College Avenue. A couple of rolls—one to the left and one to the right—followed by some over-and-under loops were stock thrills barn- 10 Nancy Love and the WASP Ferry Pilots of World War II stormers executed for first-timers. If the pilot thought these would turn her green, he was wrong. When they landed, Nancy had stars in her eyes.