JACQUELINE COCHRAN: Founder and Director of the WASP.
Rags to riches doesn't even begin to describe her story. As her husband describes the picture below, it's "the little girl in the center surrounded by some of the women she made herself into during her lifetime." From barefoot girl stealing chickens to decorated pilot dining with kings, queens, presidents, pashas and premiers, Jacqueline Cochran was truly one-of-a-kind. She went from sweeping up the beauty parlor to founding her own successful cosmetics company. She worked as a shampoo girl and a dancer, had a audience with the Pope, was best friends with Amelia Earhart and was founder and
Director of the Women's Airforce Service Pilots--the WASP. She played poker with Jimmy Doolittle, was the first woman to enter Japan after World War II,
witnessed General Yamashita's surrender in the Philippines and the trials at Nuremberg, and flew to England and convinced General Eisenhower to run for
President (and she was a Democrat!).
But here's the quiz part. Do you see the shiny items in the bottom left of the top picture? Here's a closer view. They're a pair of brass, strap-on, ... well, whats? They look like they are put on over the heels of boots, with a protusion in the back with slots as if to fit over something. My cousin, who is really into aviation, though not a pilot, had not a clue. I thought they might be for flying high performance aircraft - so that during manuevers the pilot's feet wouldn't slip off the pedals.
Saturday, March 22, 2008
While I was in San Diego for the Women in Aviation conference, I went to the San Diego Air and Space Museum. There, I came across this display for Jacqueline Cochran.
From the WASP on the Web (the source for information on the Women's AirForce Service Pilots):
Any insight, anyone?