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WASP Created

WASP trainees and their instructor pilot. (U.S. Air Force photo)

WASP trainees and their instructor pilot. (U.S. Air Force photo)

DAYTON, Ohio -- On July 1, 2009, President Barack Obama authorized Public Law 111-40 awarding the Congressional Gold Medal-the highest civilian recognition that Congress can bestow-to the Women Airforce Service Pilots(WASP). The 111th Congress awarded the medal "In recognition of their pioneering military service and exemplary record, which forged revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces of the United States of America." The medals on display are bronze replicas made by the U.S. Mint. They were presented to WASP veterans Marie Barrett Marsh and Genevieve Landman Rausch in 2010, and donated to the Museum on their behalf in 2015. The original WASP gold medal is kept by the Smithsonian Institution. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- On July 1, 2009, President Barack Obama authorized Public Law 111-40 awarding the Congressional Gold Medal-the highest civilian recognition that Congress can bestow-to the Women Airforce Service Pilots(WASP). The 111th Congress awarded the medal "In recognition of their pioneering military service and exemplary record, which forged revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces of the United States of America." The medals on display are bronze replicas made by the U.S. Mint. They were presented to WASP veterans Marie Barrett Marsh and Genevieve Landman Rausch in 2010, and donated to the Museum on their behalf in 2015. The original WASP gold medal is kept by the Smithsonian Institution. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) Exhibit in the WWII Gallery at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) Exhibit in the WWII Gallery at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- On July 1, 2009, President Barack Obama authorized Public Law 111-40 awarding the Congressional Gold Medal-the highest civilian recognition that Congress can bestow-to the Women Airforce Service Pilots(WASP). The 111th Congress awarded the medal "In recognition of their pioneering military service and exemplary record, which forged revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces of the United States of America." The medals on display are bronze replicas made by the U.S. Mint. They were presented to WASP veterans Marie Barrett Marsh and Genevieve Landman Rausch in 2010, and donated to the Museum on their behalf in 2015. The original WASP gold medal is kept by the Smithsonian Institution. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- On July 1, 2009, President Barack Obama authorized Public Law 111-40 awarding the Congressional Gold Medal-the highest civilian recognition that Congress can bestow-to the Women Airforce Service Pilots(WASP). The 111th Congress awarded the medal "In recognition of their pioneering military service and exemplary record, which forged revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces of the United States of America." The medals on display are bronze replicas made by the U.S. Mint. They were presented to WASP veterans Marie Barrett Marsh and Genevieve Landman Rausch in 2010, and donated to the Museum on their behalf in 2015. The original WASP gold medal is kept by the Smithsonian Institution. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- On July 1, 2009, President Barack Obama authorized Public Law 111-40 awarding the Congressional Gold Medal-the highest civilian recognition that Congress can bestow-to the Women Airforce Service Pilots(WASP). The 111th Congress awarded the medal "In recognition of their pioneering military service and exemplary record, which forged revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces of the United States of America." The medals on display are bronze replicas made by the U.S. Mint. They were presented to WASP veterans Marie Barrett Marsh and Genevieve Landman Rausch in 2010, and donated to the Museum on their behalf in 2015. The original WASP gold medal is kept by the Smithsonian Institution. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- On July 1, 2009, President Barack Obama authorized Public Law 111-40 awarding the Congressional Gold Medal-the highest civilian recognition that Congress can bestow-to the Women Airforce Service Pilots(WASP). The 111th Congress awarded the medal "In recognition of their pioneering military service and exemplary record, which forged revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces of the United States of America." The medals on display are bronze replicas made by the U.S. Mint. They were presented to WASP veterans Marie Barrett Marsh and Genevieve Landman Rausch in 2010, and donated to the Museum on their behalf in 2015. The original WASP gold medal is kept by the Smithsonian Institution. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- On July 1, 2009, President Barack Obama authorized Public Law 111-40 awarding the Congressional Gold Medal-the highest civilian recognition that Congress can bestow-to the Women Airforce Service Pilots(WASP). The 111th Congress awarded the medal "In recognition of their pioneering military service and exemplary record, which forged revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces of the United States of America." The medals on display are bronze replicas made by the U.S. Mint. They were presented to WASP veterans Marie Barrett Marsh and Genevieve Landman Rausch in 2010, and donated to the Museum on their behalf in 2015. The original WASP gold medal is kept by the Smithsonian Institution. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- On July 1, 2009, President Barack Obama authorized Public Law 111-40 awarding the Congressional Gold Medal-the highest civilian recognition that Congress can bestow-to the Women Airforce Service Pilots(WASP). The 111th Congress awarded the medal "In recognition of their pioneering military service and exemplary record, which forged revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces of the United States of America." The medals on display are bronze replicas made by the U.S. Mint. They were presented to WASP veterans Marie Barrett Marsh and Genevieve Landman Rausch in 2010, and donated to the Museum on their behalf in 2015. The original WASP gold medal is kept by the Smithsonian Institution. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- On July 1, 2009, President Barack Obama authorized Public Law 111-40 awarding the Congressional Gold Medal-the highest civilian recognition that Congress can bestow-to the Women Airforce Service Pilots(WASP). The 111th Congress awarded the medal "In recognition of their pioneering military service and exemplary record, which forged revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces of the United States of America." The medals on display are bronze replicas made by the U.S. Mint. They were presented to WASP veterans Marie Barrett Marsh and Genevieve Landman Rausch in 2010, and donated to the Museum on their behalf in 2015. The original WASP gold medal is kept by the Smithsonian Institution. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

DAYTON, Ohio -- On July 1, 2009, President Barack Obama authorized Public Law 111-40 awarding the Congressional Gold Medal-the highest civilian recognition that Congress can bestow-to the Women Airforce Service Pilots(WASP). The 111th Congress awarded the medal "In recognition of their pioneering military service and exemplary record, which forged revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces of the United States of America." The medals on display are bronze replicas made by the U.S. Mint. They were presented to WASP veterans Marie Barrett Marsh and Genevieve Landman Rausch in 2010, and donated to the Museum on their behalf in 2015. The original WASP gold medal is kept by the Smithsonian Institution. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ken LaRock)

In August 1943 all women pilots flying for the USAAF were consolidated into the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) program with Jacqueline Cochran as USAAF Director for Women Pilots. Nancy Harkness Love was named as WASP executive on the Air Transport Command Ferrying Division staff. More than 25,000 women applied for pilot training under the WASP program. Of these, 1,830 were accepted, 1,074 graduated and 900 remained at program's end, plus 16 former WAFS. WASP assignments after graduation were diverse -- as flight training instructors, glider tow pilots, towing targets for air-to-air and anti-aircraft gunnery practice, engineering test flying, ferrying aircraft and other duties.

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