By Alyce Collins
RARE images of the heroic female WW2 marines are published in this exciting new book exploring the ground-breaking role of these brave women.
Personal photos show the winter uniform worn by Lillian Marie Sandy, an enlisted member of the Marine Corps Women’s Reserve who was assigned to Motor Transport School to learn how to drive trucks and the internal mechanics involved. Lillian later became an assistant driving instructor and was stationed at Pearl Harbour until being transferred to the Marine Air Base in 1945.
Other fascinating shots capture the teams of aviation mechanics who repaired the planes that were flown during the war.
Another stunning shot shows the women as they arrived in Hawaii in 1945, wearing their work/utility uniforms of a sage green colour. In Hawaii, the women replaced the roles of the men in office jobs and specialised jobs such as standing in during night watches.
At Pearl Harbour, the women ran all the motor transport, providing service for approximately 16,000 people each month by driving buses, trucks and jeeps. Another stellar photograph shows the women during the Women’s Reserve Colour Guard parade, raising the American flag and the US Women’s Reserve flag.
Charming photos show the vast differences in the various uniforms the women wore, including the ensemble for early summer service, compared with that of late summer. This is compared with the darker hues worn during winter service, as worn by the Marine Commandant to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy, Mrs Anne Adams Lentz, who oversaw the design of the uniforms for the Women’s Reserve.
The first official announcement of a formation of the Women’s Reserve was on February 13th, 1943, and the requirements for candidates were that they hold American citizenship, not be married to a Marine, and have no children under 18. Applicants also had to prove their physical capability with a statement from their personal physician.
Approximately two and a half years after its creation, the Marine Corps Women’s Reserve consisted of over eighteen thousand service women.
The fascinating images are part of a new book, US Marine Corps Women’s Reserve by Jim Moran.
Jim has been fascinated by the history of the US Marine Corps for the last forty years, even assisting in the uniform details in Hollywood productions such as Flags of Our Fathers and The Pacific.
“The idea is to bring knowledge of the role played by servicewomen during WW2 and to show details of their uniforms, extending little-known information.
“There is little reference material available on this subject and my long association with Marine Corps veterans, including women Marines, identified the gap.
“This book is intended to highlight the little known major contribution made by women Marines who, whilst not being front line fighting Marines, carried out the vital support functions which freed the male Marines to fight.”
US Marine Corps Women’s Reserve is published by Pen and Sword and is available here: https://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/US-Marine-Corps-Womens-Reserve-Hardback/p/13928
For more information see www.mediadrumworld.com