Wisconsin Veterans Museum image

Archive Record

  • Email This Page
  • Send Feedback
Collection Leola Dillhunt
WVM ID Number OH 1054
Object Name Oral History
Title Oral History Interview with Leola Dillhunt
Date 2007
Event World War II
Narrator's Name Leola Dillhunt
Interviewer's Name Terry MacDonald
Description In this oral history interview, Leola de Broux Dillhunt, a native of De Pere (Wisconsin) discusses her World War II service in the Women's Army Corps (WAC) at Spence Field (Georgia).
Dillhunt reflects on her childhood in De Pere, where she excelled in academics and won a scholarship to St. Joseph's Academy. Dillhunt details spending a year in business school in Glendale (California) before the United States entered the war, and then returning to Wisconsin to work at the Fort Howard Paper Company (Green Bay). She reflects on needing her father's approval to join the service as she was under age, and feeling hurt by her father's willingness for his children to enlist. Dillhunt references ultimately deciding to wait until she could enlist independently in the WAC.

She explains her job as an air traffic controller on base, which she was placed into due to her high IQ. Dillhunt describes instances of racism and sexism she experienced in the south, including her choice not to wear her uniform off base for fear of confrontation and her friendships with African American soldiers. She describes meeting her husband, being married on base and her feelings of disappointment at being forced to leave the service after becoming pregnant. Dillhunt outlines returning home to Wisconsin at the end of the war and starting a family, as well as she and her husband's struggles with tuberculosis. A mother of 12, Dillhunt reflects on her happy memories from her time as a WAC and expresses her children's pride at having a mother different from others.
Extent and Medium of Description Analog audio recording: 1 audio cassette (approx. 32 minutes)
Transcript: 18 pgs.
Reproduction Conditions / Copyright WVM owns copyright to this material. Contact the WVM Research Center for further information about Terms of Use.
Biographical Record Dillhunt, Leola M.