Second World War: Our Country

Our country's entry into the Second World War from the eyes of an Oregonian woman.

| Good Old Days

I was 14 years old when Japan bombed Pearl Harbor. I was learning to put a crease in a pair of men's pants when I heard the news. Everyone was dumbfounded! How could anyone dare attack us? 

As if on cue, the people of our country banded together, rolled up our sleeves and prepared to defend what was ours. No loyal American neglected his or her part in defending our country, homes and families.

My family suffered through the shortages, sacrifices, rationing, air-raid sirens and the trauma of the Second World War as much as everyone else.

We suffered the loss of one of our own. Two of my brothers joined the fray in the spring of 1942. Tim joined the Naval Air Corps. His plane crashed on Puget Sound in October 1942. He and one other man survived the crash. Ray joined the Army Air Corps. He didn't come back. His plane exploded in mid-air over New Guinea in the summer of 1944. He had received one letter telling about the birth of his daughter, Linda.

There are many firsts attributed to the Second World War. For the first time in our country's history, women entered the armed services.

Women also went to work in shipyards, airplane factories and other war-related positions.

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