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The Betty H. Carter Women Veterans Historical Project

Oral history interview with Norma Schrader, 2007

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Object ID: Wv0379.5.001

Description: Primarily documents Norma Schrader’s active service with the WAVES from 1945 to 1946 and 1951 to 1953, and her life in the reserves following these tours.

Summary:

Schrader briefly discusses her family, her job at Metropolitan Life Insurance Company before the war, her decision to join the U.S. Navy WAVES, and her family and friends' reactions. She describes basic training at Hunter College, including her housing arrangements, schedule, and an amusing anecdote about topless sunbathing.

Schrader discusses her duties as master-at-arms, overseeing barracks and a mess hall in Charleston, South Carolina. She also describes the city, including its social life and how navy women were not made to feel welcome by Charlestonians, even at church. She also relates a story about putting whiskey into mince pies for Thanksgiving one year. Topics related to her during the Korean war include working and playing sports with African American women and her work as an athletics advisor. Other topics include choosing not to make the navy a first career, working at the Department of the Navy, and the influence of the military on her life.

Creator:

Biographical Info:

Collection: Norma Schrader Papers

Rights: It is responsibility of the user to follow the copyright law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). Materials are not to be reproduced in published works without written consent, and any use should credit Jackson Library, The University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Full Text:

Kim Adkins:

Friday, February 2, 2007 and this is Kim Adkins speaking. I'm in the home of Mrs. Norma Schrader in Cary, North Carolina, [to conduct an oral history interview for the Women Veteran's Historical Collection at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro]. Thank you, Norma, for agreeing to speak with me. [pause] Please tell me about your life before you entered the military.

Norma Shrader:

Well, let's see. I [was a] high school graduate. I worked for the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, that was my primary job. I had a couple of small ones, I suppos,e until I went into the navy, and that was in 19—I enlisted in '44, actually, went to boot camp in January '45. Before that, it was, you know, you go to high school, you do all the things you do in high school. Then you get out and look for a job and you get one, if you're lucky, and then something makes you decide maybe this isn't what I want to do, and you go to the navy recruiting office. [laughter]

KA:

Well, when and where were you born?

NS:

Brooklyn, New York, 1920, which makes me 87.

KA:

[pause] Did you grow up in Brooklyn?

NS:

No. No. I grew up in New Jersey.

KA:

What did your parents do for a living?

NS:

My dad worked for International Paper [Company], but he died when I was only nine, so my mother married again to a policeman in North Bergen, New Jersey. [laughter]

KA:

[pause] Do you mean—

NS:

She didn't work.

KA:

Did your father actually work for a newspaper or—

NS:

No, no. International Paper. International Paper Company.

KA:

Ah.

NS:

I'm not sure what his job was with them, but that's what got us to New Jersey. We lived in Long Island, [New York], before that I gather. I don't remember that but—[laughs] [background noise]

KA:

So was your mother a homemaker?

NS:

[pause] Yes. Basically. I—I think she worked before she met my father, but—she told me one time she sold shoes, women's shoes, in a shoe store. [laughter]

KA:

Well, what were your parents' names?

NS:

My father's name was Joseph. My mother's name was Mabel.

KA:

Do you have any siblings?

NS:

No.

KA:

Where did you graduate high school from?

NS:

Union City, New Jersey. Union Hill High School. 1937. God, that's fifty years ago. No, it's more than fifty years.

KA:

Did you like school?

NS:

Yeah, as much as anybody does. [laughter] Did you?

KA:

I—yes, I did. [both laugh] What was your favorite subject in school?

NS:

I took commercial subjects. I liked accounting and I took stenography and typing, all the course—classes that I thought would get me a good job, and they helped. I mean—be—not being—I didn't go to college, so these were good bases.

KA:

So you never attended college?

NS:

No. I did business school [NS added later: at Packard School of Business] after I got out of the navy, yeah. I went to a business school in New York for two years and retook typing, stenography, bookkeeping, accounting, and all those things.

KA:

Where were you when you heard about Pearl Harbor?

NS:

Would you believe I don't remember? [laughter] I really don't.

KA:

You said you had a job when you enlisted in the navy?

NS:

Yeah, I was working for the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company in accident and health. File clerk, you know, mail, very basic job.

KA:

Well, why did you join the WAVES [Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service]?

NS:

Well, actually, my original application went to the Marines, but it seemed like the Marines had stopped recruiting, I guess, and they turned my application over to the [U.S.] Navy, and then the [U.S.] Navy took me.

KA:

Well, why did you want to join the Marines?

NS:

I just wanted to join something I guess to get away from home. I was what, twenty-five years old? The family situation was sort of iffy and it seemed like a good thing to do at the time.

KA:

When did you enter the service?

NS:

I actually reported boot camp in January of '45. Johnny-come-lately. [KA laughs]

KA:

Did you train on a college campus?

NS:

On where?

KA:

On a college campus?

NS:

Yeah. Hunter College in New York [City].

KA:

When were you discharged?

NS:

First time I was discharged was in August of '46. I was shipped over, as they call it, into the reserve program. Recalled to active duty in May of '51 during the Korean War and discharged again from that in September of '53.

KA:

[pause] Did you feel that by joining you were freeing a man to fight, as the posters said?

NS:

Not exactly. [KA laughs] My job in the navy was not freeing a man. They might have liked to have had my job, I don't know. I was in charge of a WAVE barracks. So I think a man might have enjoyed that. [laughter]

KA:

Well, how did your parents feel about you joining?

NS:

My mother had misgivings, but after all, I was twenty-five years old, there was nothing she could do about it. I was still living at home. In those days, girls did stay at home for a long time.

KA:

What about your friends?

NS:

Oh, they thought I was crazy.

KA:

[laughs] When you joined, was this the first time you had been far from home for a long period of time?

NS:

Yes.

KA:

Do you remember where you joined?

NS:

In New York. When I was—I was working in New York and the recruiting station was in New York.

KA:

Do you remem[ber]—what do you remember about the first day?

NS:

[laughs] It was cold. And they handed out—they had us in lines. I don't remember what all the lines were. Physical exams, picking up your uniform, your gear, getting your—the address of the apartment building that you'd be living in. That's what they did; they weren't barracks, they just had taken over apartments in the area around Hunter, and I think that the apartments had—I think there were four women to each apartment. I'm trying to—no, this was a long time back—and I'm not sure that we had two bathrooms, I don't think they built apartments with extra baths in those days, I think they were [chuckles]—but then we were up on maybe the fourth or fifth floor. There were stairs, but I was young. I could do stairs in those days.

KA:

Where did your basic training take place?

NS:

At Hunter College.

KA:

What was it like?

NS:

Cold. [both laugh] Snowy. Get to the Mess Hall. Get in line. Get trays. Eat in a hurry. You had thirty minutes to go through the line, get your food, eat it, then go back out through another line, dump your trays, get back out in the cold, and then they would march you back to your bar[racks]—back to the—your apartments—I'll call them barracks. You get there long enough, maybe, to make a “necessary” stop. [KA laughs] And then they'd holler for muster, which meant we all got together again and lined up and went back out again and rushed back to Hunter campus to take a class.

KA:

What kind of classes did you have to take?

NS:

Well, they were teaching us navy history, basic recognition of—of officers, so that you knew when to salute and when not to. Things of that state. Just general—general information that would be good—it seems to me it took us what, six weeks we were there? I guess six weeks.

KA:

What was your job while in the service?

NS:

Primarily, we—they were called—we were called masters-at-arms. We were—I guess you call it like a dormitory mother or a house mother. We were in charge of the bar[racks], the women who lived in the barracks, and we had to make sure that the barracks were kept clean. We did inspections, white-glove inspections, tops of cabinets and stuff, and made sure the beds were made correct[ly]—beds—cots were made correctly or bunks, whatever, and that—that there were people on watch, in charge when you weren't there. Mostly when I—I was stationed in Charleston, [South Carolina], during World War II, and actually my main responsibility there, strangely enough, was a mess hall, a WAVES mess hall. And we had a couple of ships' cooks, they were men. We had one WAVE baker and she was wonderful, and I had a couple of seaman, low rank, a low rating I guess it's called. Took care of, you know, serving on the line and whatever, it was like a cafeteria, something like that. It was kind of fun. I met a lot of people I would have never come into contact with, which is one of the pluses I think.

KA:

Was that in Charleston, South Carolina?

NS:

Yes. Yeah.

KA:

Ok. So what was a typical day like on the job for you?

NS:

[laughter] Get up at the crack of dawn. Get over to the mess hall. Make sure that breakfast was started and on the line so that when the various WAVES came through to have breakfast before they went to their jobs that everything was set up right and there was plenty of food and coffee and whatever. And then when they—when the lines were closed and everybody had been fed, hopefully—if they didn't get up over in the barracks, they didn't [laughter] they didn't get fed. But then we had to clean up, wax the floors, buff them down, clean up the mess hall. By the time you get finished it was time to start over again for lunch, et cetera, then for dinner.

And after dinner, well, you went socializing. You could do—Charleston was a strange town to most of us in those days. South Carolina—actually I think they still—what do they call it, a Sunday Blue Law state? No liquor [on Sundays]. But there were all these—all these bars around, but you could only get beer and—and some of them [laughter] they would serve you whiskey, but they'd hover over your table when they brought it and they would say, [whispers] “Here, hurry up and drink this before they come in,” you know. So some of us got back to the barracks, we were lucky we got back sometimes. [laughter] I guess today they call it binge drinking, do they? I guess that's what they might—you could compare it to that I guess in those days, but Charleston was—had a reputation, sort of like I understand Norfolk, Virginia, had at one time, “Dogs and sailors stay off the grass.” The military was not really all that welcome, although we were a big part of the economy, and you got to accept that after a while.

KA:

Well, when you were recalled to active duty during the Korean War, what did you do?

NS:

I was working at that time for the government, for the navy department in Charleston. I had gone back to Charleston to live and—I ended up at the [clears throat] National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda [Maryland], again in charge of the WAVE barracks. And after a while, they replaced me, fortunately, and I was put in charge of women's athletics, and I worked for a WAVE officer. Most of our duty in that respect was to interview the military coming back injured and getting them evaluated for release to civilian duty. It was an interesting—it was an interesting period. I was there for, what? Oh, spring of '52 [summer of '51, corrected by NS] until fall of '53. It was interesting work; working with hospital corpsmen is a lot like working with a whole other [laughter] group of—of people, that there is—there was always—they say there is a right way, a wrong way, and a navy way, but then you add on top of that a hospital way. And it was really an interesting experience, though. I met some nice people and still keep in contact with one or two of them.

KA:

Where were you stationed after basic training?

NS:

From New [York]—from Hunter College, I went to Charleston, and I was living in Charleston when I was recalled, and then I was stationed in Washington, D.C. Oh, in Bethesda actually.

KA:

Did you enjoy the work you did?

NS:

Yeah. Yes. Yeah, I enjoyed it. I even thought about shipping over and staying in the regular navy, except that I wasn't getting along very well with my WAVE officer in charge, and I decided, well, I could go back to Charleston, back to my job, and so that's what I did. I stayed in the reserve program, however, drilling on weekends. Finished up twenty satisfactory years. That's why I earned those senior chief pins.

KA:

Were you treated as equals to men?

NS:

No. I don't think so, but see, in—in all the positions I was in, I wasn't working with men, so I really don't know. It'd be hard for me to say.

KA:

So you didn't work with any other men?

NS:

[pause] No. A shame, but no. [both laugh]

KA:

What was the hardest thing you had to do physically while in the service?

NS:

[pause] Try run to first base when I hit a bad hit. We had a women's softball team in Charleston and the field was—do you know Charleston at all?

KA:

No, I've never been there.

NS:

Never been? Oh, ok. [pause] The barracks were on one side. Charleston is sort of on a peninsula and Charles—the barracks were on this side of the peninsula and the softball field was on the other side. We're talking maybe a couple of miles at the most. But the hardest thing I did was try—try to run to first base one night at the softball game, and I had pulled a hamstring in my leg, couldn't ride my bike back to the barracks; I had to walk. And I guess that was about the hardest thing I ever had to do—physically, physically.

KA:

What about emotionally? What was the hardest thing you had to do?

NS:

Emotionally? [pause] Oh dear. [pause] Decisions, whether to put people on report who were coming in inebriated or catching them doing things in the barracks that they shouldn't have been doing. But you know some—you become friends with these people, and there's a fine line there, do you report them or do you let them get away with it, can you just talk to them, like a house mother or counselor I suppose would say. I found that probably the most difficult, but fortunately I didn't have too many opportunities where I had to do that.

KA:

Were you ever afraid or in personal danger?

NS:

No.

KA:

[pause] What did you do for fun?

NS:

[laughter] Went to some of these bars where you drank beer and whiskey in a hurry. [laughter] [pause] I got—in Charleston there wasn't really much that you could do other than that, a very provincial city in those days. It's gotten better now, but—I've—I lived in that area totally more than half of my adult life as it ended up, but in the—in the [Washington] D.C. area, after I got involved in the women's sports, we had basketball teams, we had softball teams and we would travel around to the other military installations, play their games, and whatever, and I kind of enjoyed that. And then, you know, we'd go out and find a place were you could go drink; I think I did more drinking then than I do now. But you had your little group of people that you were friends with.

KA:

Did you ever attend dances?

NS:

[pause] I didn't. No. No.

KA:

Did you go to movies?

NS:

On the base, occasionally. Yes.

KA:

Did you ever attend a USO [United Service Organization] show?

NS:

Nope.

KA:

Did you go out on dates?

NS:

A few, a few. I'm a Miss these days. I'm not married, never have been. [laughter] Well, my dating must [unclear] not very successful.

KA:

How long were you in the military?

NS:

About four and half years of active duty, the rest was reserve time and I—I retired and I do draw a retired pay, not a lot, but every bit helps.

KA:

When World War II was over, you said that you had thought about making it a career, except that you didn't get along with your WAVE commander—

NS:

No, that was during the Korean War.

KA:

That was during the Korean War?

NS:

That was after the Korean War, yeah. World War II, we didn't have the option. The only option they did give us and that was just—just started when—when I think when our group was put through the discharge in August of '46, that was the option. They had what they called the V6 reserve program, and I don't know why I signed on for it, but I figured I couldn't lose anything by doing it I guess; several of us did. And then as it turned out, in the long run, when I went back to Charleston to live and I found a reserve program that I could get into and draw pay for, it worked out and that's why I was able to retire, but—with twenty satisfactory years, so that's what I did.

KA:

So after the Korean War, when you were thinking about making it a career, were you encouraged to do so?

NS:

Not really. Not really. I think if I might have had another—a different WAVE officer in charge I might have, but this one—like I said, this one I just—we were poles apart. You meet people like that sometimes, you know.

KA:

What do you think the mood of the country was during World War II?

NS:

Oh, we were very gung ho. We—we were going to win, there was no question about that. It was just unfortunate, that as far as women in the service was concerned— and maybe it's just because I was stationed in Charleston, I don't know—but we were not accepted very gracefully. Excuse me.

I remember one of the first Sundays I was there, one of the other WAVES who had been there before wanted to know did I want to go to church, and I said “Sure, I—I've never been a real church goer, but that'd be nice.” And we got ourselves all spruced up in our white Sunday—summer uniforms, you know, and we went to a church there—I won't mention the denomination—and people actually got up and moved out of the pews when we came in, and nobody stopped to thank us, you know, wish us welcome or anything like that. The only church that did that, that wished them well, wished us welcome was the Catholic Church down there. They always served breakfast to uniformed personnel after every Mass, but the—I must not—I can't say that the Protestant churches did. None of them. I was—that's a little bit of a side [unclear]. I'm kind of unhappy about that, but that was just, you know, one example of Charleston. But then Charleston is a—if you weren't born there three hundred years ago, you were not a Charlestonian, you didn't belong. It's one of those things.

KA:

What about during the Korean War? What was the mood of the country, do you think?

NS:

[pause] I think—I think we were getting a little bit [pause] tired of trying to police the whole world—much as we are now, I guess. During World War II, there were no [pause] women of color in the—in the navy, I don't know about the others. In World War—in—during the Korean War there were women of color, and we had several of them in our barracks at Bethesda. And I remember they were real nice people, excellent, real nice people, hard working, good athletes a couple of them. And we'd go to these, you know, inter-agency games, and we all wanted to stop someplace on the way back for a hamburger or whatever, but if we had one of the black women with us we couldn't do it. We couldn't go in anywhere, they wouldn't serve us. That sort of—was a little bit hard to take. I guess that's not—that doesn't seem to be the case anymore, fortunately, and I'm glad for that because those girls worked just as hard as anybody else, worked just as hard to get ahead, but they weren't recognized, too bad.

KA:

Who were your heroes or heroines from those days?

NS:

[makes sound] I don't know that I had any actually. My—I couldn't say. I don't know. I guess I didn't have any.

KA:

What did you think of the Roosevelts [President Franklin D. and Eleanor]?

NS:

I would say [unclear]—I would have voted for him. I'm not sure why I didn't. Maybe I did. Let's see, when did he first come in? He died while I was at boot camp. Yeah, he died while I was—in '45 when I was still at—at Hunter. So he was in what, his third term then? That was his third term. I guess I was too young when he was first elected to vote for him, but I think I would have.

KA:

What did you think of President [Harry] Truman?

NS:

[pause] I'm not sure that I had any thoughts about him. In those days, for some reason or another, I wasn't all that interested in politics, what was going on. I think as I've gotten older, I've gotten a little bit more interested in it, but in those days, I—I wasn't thinking about it.

KA:

Do you have any favorite songs from World War II?

NS:

Let's see if I can remember. There were a couple we used to sing a lot. [pause] Oh, dear. [pause] You Are My Sunshine. [sings] “You are my sunshine, my only sunshine.” I can't remember the rest, but we used to sing that all the time. [pause] Gosh, I can't remember back that far. That one I remember. That one we used to holler out quite frequently [laughter] under lots of circumstances, but I can't remember any of the others.

KA:

How about movies?

NS:

[pause] During that time period, let's see, when was Gone With the Wind? Or was that before?

KA:

I think that was a little bit before, but—

NS:

I remember standing in line to see that. The Roxy Theater in New York [City]. [pause] Can't think of any right now. See, you—you should have asked me these questions about thirty years ago, I might have been able to do it. [laughter]

KA:

Well, do you remember any of your favorites from the Korean War?

NS:

Any what?

KA:

From—any of your favorites—the movies or songs from when you were—

NS:

Oh, I used to—I like the—I like musicals. Judy Garland musicals. Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. I watch Turner Classic Movies [cable movie channel]. I watch that every now and again when I see that it's going to be one of those. [laughter] I like those old movies. I'll be sure a lot of other people my age say, “They don't make them like that anymore.”

KA:

Do you remember where you were when you heard about VE [Victory in Europe] Day, which was May the eighth, 1945?

NS:

I was in Charleston. They turned us loose on the—on the city. Everybody was up and down King Street, which was the main street in Charleston, and I'm sure we went out that night and probably had more beer and boilermakers—you know, whiskey and beer, boilermakers—than we should have, but and I'm sure that they—we were downtown Charleston and there was a naval shipyard, which was the other end of the city, which is now North Charleston—and the naval shipyard is defunct now. It was a place that they used to bring hospital ships in. This was the naval hospital and the naval hospital—the hospital ships would sort of lower their anchors right off the shore where our barracks were. There was a lot of flashlighting going back and forth between WAVE barracks and the hospital ships. And I gu[ess] everybody was turned loose. The town was full of sailors on VE Day.

KA:

What about VJ [Victory over Japan] Day?

NS:

That was—that was the first one, wasn't it?

KA:

That was the second.

NS:

VJ Day first—came—came first.

KA:

No, VJ Day was August the fourteenth.

NS:

Same year?

KA:

Yes, same year.

NS:

The same thing. Same—oh I was already out by VJ Day. No, I wasn't either. I got out in August of '46, so I was still there. It was a big holiday. Lots—lots of bars and overnight—people there morning to night. The navy was all over the place. So was the air force; we had an air force base down there, so there were a lot of air force people, too.

KA:

Did you feel like you had to return to a traditional female role after the war?

NS:

[pause] More or less. More or less. I went back to my job with [clears throat]—after World War II, I went back to the Metropolitan Insurance Company and then I went back to school, but secretarial work seemed like the only thing that women could do. Then after the Korean War, I went back to Charleston to my job with the Navy Department down there, but again it was traditionally women—women's work there.

KA:

Was readjusting to civilian life easy for you?

NS:

Yeah, it wasn't bad. I didn't have a problem, yeah.

KA:

Why do you think that was?

NS:

Well, I mean, yeah, I guess because I, you know, I—I'm an outgoing type of individual and tend to say, “Well, if this is what it's supposed to be, you make the most of it.” I have been ready to downsize from here. Not what I would have chosen at this particular point, but, you know, what has to be, so I'll continue with my outside activities and just live somewhere else.

KA:

Do you consider yourself to be an independent person?

NS:

Yes. Ask any of my friends and they'll tell you the same thing.

KA:

Do you feel the military made you more independent?

NS:

[pause] Probably. Because I guess I learned that I could—the things that I said—told people to do, they had to do, and I was in that kind of a slot and so, you know, when I got back into my job—my old job, I—I was able to move up fairly well in middle management, not as far as the men could go, but you know, considering my educational background, I think I did fine.

KA:

Many consider service women of your day pioneers, is that how you feel?

NS:

[laughter] No, I think they were pioneers before me, not from me—not me, but I—I certainly am the kind, when young women ask me about what—should they do this or that, I always recommend that they try a tour in the navy or one of the militaries. I think it's a good experience for everybody.

KA:

Do you think that service—serving in the military—women serving in the military during World War II had any connection to the ideas of women's liberation movement of the 1960s?

NS:

Probably. Probably. Because I'm sure that some of the women, especially the better education ones who were able to get into some of the more technical areas of service, realized that they could do the work that men were doing. And yeah, I think—I think it had a great deal to do with it.

KA:

How do you feel about women in combat positions?

NS:

Hey, if they want to take it on, they—that's where they ought to be. I have no objection to that. And if they have the ability to—if they show abilities equal to men, then let them do it. I'm not sure I would want to at this point, but [laughter] but I think if it's—if they're going in and feel like that they're—they can do an equal job, then yes I think they should be there.

KA:

How did your service affect your life?

NS:

[pause] I'm not sure that it did particularl[y]—well, I guess maybe it—it stopped—it changed me from being a homebody to somebody who wanted to go out independently. There's that independence again. I made my way without knowing that I had a house to go back to if I lost my job tomorrow and I would still get fed. This way if I lost my job, I'd have to feed myself. But yeah, I—I think it—it helped me in that respect, maybe, to see that there are opportunities outside the house if you make the most of them.

KA:

Do you have any funny or interesting stories from your time that you'd like to share?

NS:

[laughter] Yeah. When I was in Charleston, I—I've mentioned briefly that we had this WAVE baker. I can remember her name, Ruth Witte, and she was from Minnesota or Wisconsin I guess, somewhere up in there. She was the best cook and she—you know, éclairs, stuff like that. And one Thanksgiving we were putting on this big spread for Thanksgiving, you know, turkey and all the stuff, mince pies, apple pies, pumpkins pies, and we decided that the mince pies had to have [sniffs] brandy or something in it, you know, and we got her to do that. One of us—one—I don't know which one of us—one of us went out and brought back a pint of whiskey, put it in the mincemeat, in these big crockery jugs, put it in—we had walk in refrigerators; we put this in there. You couldn't believe the smell. And don't you know, headquarters decided that it was a good time for us to have an inspection, mess hall inspection. [sniffs] Oh dear, you know, what do we do with the mincemeat? Well, what could we do? We just left it in there, hoping that they would not enter—you know, go into the thing.

Well, they did, they opened the door and [sniffs] all of this came out. We never had so many people in our mess hall for a meal and—before then or after that [laughter]. And we ran out of mince pie, then they had to take some of the others, but I—I remember that. I thought that was probably one of the funniest things that ever happened to us. It's—it was really good. And then at that—during boot camp, it was February, I don't know—it was a very, very warm day—don't remember—and we were able to get up into—onto the roof of the apartment we were in. And one of the other women—she was from Ohio, Miriam P.Greene—I kept in touch with her for a long time—when we decided to go up on the roof and sunbathe [makes a gesture that suggests they went topless], February, New York, she got so sunburned that she had to go to sickbay the next day and was out of [laughter] action for about two days after that, she got such a strong sunburn. I wonder if she ever remembers that? I lost touch with her a long time ago, but I—I remember her, but I thought that was kind of funny, because February in New York was never that warm. I—I don't remember it ever being that warm before. Those are the two things that really stick in my mind most—most prominently.

KA:

Did you say her last name was Green, like the color?

NS:

Yes. Yes. G-r-e-e-n-e. Miriam P. She was married. She was one of the few married WAVES that I ever ran into. Most of us were single, because if you got married while you were in, out you went. [Of] course, that's no longer true, now you can even be pregnant and have children and be in, but you couldn't do that then [unclear]. But yeah, I remember, [unclear] what was she was going to—she went to a specialist school and so did I, but we didn't go to the same one. I don't remember where Miriam went to. She was from Ohio and we kept in touch for a long time, but—you know Christmas, but then it goes away [unclear].

KA:

So what special school did you go to?

NS:

The—they sent me to school to make me a master-at-arms.

KA:

Is there anything else you would like to add about your service experiences?

NS:

No. Just that I would strong recommend it. Most young wo[men]—any young woman, before she makes any final decisions, should take a tour of one of the militaries—of course, I'm prejudiced, but you know, any one of them. Because I think—maybe even before you get to college—[be]cause I think that then you have a better idea of what life is like. Because you're going to meet people in the service that you wouldn't normally come into contact with. [Of] course it can make you or break you, but that depends on you, yourself. So I'm—I'm all for—I would not object to having a—a required term of military service for—for young people. I think it's a good thing.

KA:

Okay. Well, thank you again for speaking with me.

NS:

You're welcome.

[End of Interview]