In Photos: Women Marines During WWII
Put through their paces: The women’s training was no different than the men’s. Between February 1943 and September 1946 a total of 18 female Marines were killed – most of whom tragically in off-duty motoring accidents, just three while performing their duty. However, their value was soon greatly appreciated by the men who eventually became extremely protective of the new recruits, taking great care in their training of the women.
Female Marines load a bomber at a US airbase. By the end of 1943 Major General Thomas Halcomb has conceded: ‘Like most Marines, when the matter first came up I didn’t believe women could serve any useful purpose in the Marine Corps … Since then I’ve changed my mind.’ The Women’s Reserve performed more than 200 military assignments including positions as clerical workers, parachute riggers, mechanics, radio operators, mapmakers, aviation mechanics and welders.
A number of Aviation Mechanics from the Marine Corps Women’s Reserve are pictured ensuring that the United States’ airforce planes were in prime condition. As a few work on the engine, three other inspect the fuselage and one of the women carries out checks from the cockpit of a bomber during WWII.