Locals Who Served
Among the hundreds-of-thousands of women that took action in the military during World War II, our very own Toledo had veterans of its own. Below are only a handful of the many miraculous local women who contributed to the military war effort:
Auxiliary Rose Stone, First Bulgarian Woman to Enter the United States Military
Toledo native Rose Stone arrived in the United States in 1914 where she became a legal citizen. When she entered the Women's Army Corps in January 1943, she became the first ever Bulgarian woman to enter any branch of the United States military. She was stationed in Boca Raton, where she would participate in the field shows as a dancer, embracing her Bulgarian hertiage. At the time, the impact that her induction had on the community was so renowned that one of the dance costumes she wore as a young girl was put on exhibit at the Toledo Museum of Art.
Sergeant Margaret Chick, Secretary to Dwight D. Eisenhower
In 1942, Margaret Chick was the first Toledo woman to join the Woman's Army Corps. She trained in Iowa and eventually began work overseas. During her time in the war, Chick became the secretary to (then) General Dwight D. "Ike" Eisenhower, who later became the 34th President of the United States. While she was overseas working for the General, she would travel between North Africa and England to serve her duties.
Lieutenant Marion Dubbs & Lieutenant Mary M. Earl, Toledo Nurses Get Air Medals
Lieutenant Marion Dubbs was awarded her Air Medal by a Major General at an AAF base in Oahu, Hawaii. Dubbs role in the war was serving in a medical air evacuation squadron in the Pacific. She recieved the decoration for her number of flights bringing casualties back from the frontlines to area hospitals. Her award was requested by the deputy commander of administration for the AAFs in the Pacific.
Lieutenant Mary M. Earl recieved her Air Medal in 1945 from the 5th Air Force Troop Carrier commander. A graduate from St. Ursula Academy and St. Vincent's Hospital School of Nursing, Earl spent a total of 142 hours enduring combat flying. Her award was for her duration of combat flights as an air evacuation nurse in New Guinea, Admiralty Islands, Dutch East Indies, and the Philippines.
Norma Jean Allen, First Toledo Woman to Enlist in the Marines
With very high standards, the U.S. Marines was a very meticulous branch when it came to who could be accepted: any woman applying must have a high school diploma with some form of experience that could apply to their role in the Marines. Norma Jean Allen, a secretary for Willys-Overland Motors, was the first Toledo woman to do this. In order to complete her acceptance, Allen was required to pass physical and aptitude tests to prove her endurance and strength. She was sworn in in 1943.
Shirley Chapman, Only Toledo Woman to be the Mistress of Ceremonies in an Overseas USO Troupe
Shirley Champan, a Toledo native, was the only know Toledo woman to entertain troops overseas in her own USO troupe. She and her husband, Arthur Angel, who was also her manager, lived in Hollywood for a year before traveling abroad. Their travels began in North Africa and Sicily, where they eventually joined the 5th army in Rome, Italy, to entertain.
Lois M. Thompson, Air Service Widow
In March of 1943, Lois M. Thompson lost her husband, Lieutenant Jay R. Thompson, to an airplane crash. To keep her husbands love and passion alive, Thompson entered the Army Ferrying Command Training Service so that she, too, could learn to fly and keep the Thompson name up in the air. She entered the service in Janurary 1944.