I’ve been immersed in WWII for research for the new book, mostly home front stories, but I came across an amazing slice of history that happened 72 years ago today.
2nd Lt. Elsie S. Ott was put in charge of the first-ever air evacuation of wounded soldiers, in this case from Karachi, India, to Walter Reed Hospital. She was given one day’s notice to prepare a plane and herself for the week-long trip — one which used to take months by ship — and all she had in terms of medical supplies was a first aid kit.
Bless her heart, she not only made do, she took professional care of those patients. And she took careful notes about what would be necessary on future medical missions. For her efforts, on March 26 1943, she was award the US Air Medal, the first ever given to a woman.