Davis Supports Restoring Inurnment Rights for Women Airforce Service Pilots at Arlington National Cemetery
Bill Pays Homage to WWII Pilots Including Former UIUC Flight Instructor
U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) today announced his support for restoring inurnment rights for Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) at Arlington National Cemetery. Recently, the Secretary of the Army rescinded eligibility for WASP members. Davis has cosponsored H.R. 4336, the WASP Arlington Inurnment Restoration Act, sponsored by U.S. Rep. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.) a retired U.S. Air Force Colonel, which would overturn the Army’s decision.
“Members of the WASP provided an invaluable service to our country during WWII and like so many who serve put their lives on the line for our freedoms,” said Davis. “Pilots like Dora deserve full recognition for their service and the same honors we award other war heroes.”
H.R. 4336 would ensure nearly 1,100 women pilots who served their country during World War II, including Dora Dougherty Strother, who flew and trained others to fly B-29 bombers in WWII and later became a flight instructor at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, receive full recognition for their service. WASPs underwent the same training as male pilots and assumed the same risks, thirty-eight women died during their service. There are roughly 110 surviving WASPs today. H.R. 4336 has more than 130 cosponsors and support continues to grow.
Dora Dougherty Strother (top) member of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) in 1943 and former UIUC flight instructor.
(National Museum of the U.S. Air Force photo)