WASHINGTON—Despite urban legend, there was more than one “Rosie the Riveter” during World War II. Thousands of women worked in aircraft factories, shipyards, tank assembly lines and other manufacturing facilities around the United States.
As part of Women’s History Month, a group of former Rosies from Michigan recently took part in an Honor Flight to the nation’s capital, where they met with lawmakers. The event was sponsored by Boeing and the American Rosie the Riveter Association.
Following the visit to the Capitol, the Rosies visited the National Mall, stopping at the World War II and FDR memorials. The day ended with a reception at Boeing’s headquarters in Arlington, VA, where the women were presented with special Rosie the Riveter coins in honor of the passage of the Congressional Gold Medal Act, recognizing their work during the war.
Representatives Debbie Dingell (D-MI) and Lisa McClain (R-MI) hosted the group of 11 women, all between the ages of 98 and 101.
“With grace and gusto, more than 6 million of these women entered the workforce to support the war effort during World War II, and in the process, redefined the role of the American woman,” says Dingell. “We will always be thankful for their strength and bravery, which was integral to getting a tough job done, and their patriotism will forever remain part of the American story.
“These women inspired a social movement, set a new example of inclusivity in the workforce and paved the way forward for generations of women,” explains Dingell. “We salute their impact on our nation and their contribution to progress.”
“The Rosies played a critical role during World War II,” adds Meredith Rosenbeck, CEO of the Honor Flight Network. “It is wonderful to have this opportunity to honor the service of these women to our country during that time.”
A total of 40 Rosies have participated in Honor Flights to date.