They Called Them Angels: American Military Nurses of World War II

By Kathi Jackson | Go to book overview

or fields, and dodged aerial strafings. We covered 600 miles in 87 days, and I had joined the Air Force so I wouldn't have to walk." 60 The men suffered from malnutrition caused by poor sanitary conditions and diet and many had been tortured. By the time they were freed, many of the men "were nothing more than wraiths of skin and bone, too weary to rise from their cots, and too emaciated to be able to eat a solid meal."

According to authors Cosmas and Cowdrey, "The European Theater was the healthiest in which Americans served." But the European Theater did have its advantages. There were no jungles and no tropical diseases, the area was relatively small and compact, there were friendly civilians, and the surroundings "possessed (even if in damaged form) all the physical substructure of industrial civilization."

But results are all that matters, and the authors wrote that "the theater could point to a superlative achievement in lifesaving under what were often most difficult circumstances. The job it did was of staggering size. . . .'Of 393,987 battle wounded admitted to its hospitals, 12,523 died--a mortality rate of 3.2 percent, the lowest for any theater of operations'." 61


NOTES
1.
Quoted in Manchester Boddy, War Guide ( Los Angeles: Daily News), no date, pp. 21, 20.
2.
Elizabeth-Anne Wheal, Stephen Pope, and James Taylor, Encyclopedia of the Second World War (Secaucus, NJ: Castle Books, Div. of Book Sales, 1989), p. xii.
3.
Theodore Ropp, "World War II," World Book Encyclopedia ( Chicago: World Book-Childcraft Int'l., 1982), p. 391.
4.
World War II: Europe and North Africa, Map ( Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, December 1991).
5.
Charles M. Wiltse, Medical Service in the Mediterranean and Minor Theaters, U.S. Army in World War II, The Technical Services, The Medical Department ( Washington, D.C.: Office of the Chief of Military History Department of the Army, 1965), pp. 7,18.
6.
Quoted in Barrie Pitt, The Battle of the Atlantic, Series: World War II ( Alexandria: Time-Life Books, 1977), pp. 136, 182.
7.
Quoted in "Nurse's Log Pictures 12 Days in Lifeboat," Newspaper clipping sent to author by William G. Blissett, unidentified by paper name or date.
8.
Quoted in Col. Julia O. Flikke, Nurses in Action ( New York: Lippincott, 1943), p. 145.
9.
"Army Nurses in Ireland and Iceland," American Journal of Nursing, November 1942, p.1314.
10.
Edna D. Umbach, ANC, "Christmas Overseas," American Journal of Nursing, December 1943, p. 1064.
11.
Quoted in Flikke, p. 145.
12.
Edna D. Umbach, "Army Nurses in Australia and Iceland," American Journal of Nursing, June 1942, p. 689.
13.
Quoted in Flikke, p. 147.
14.
Wiltse, p. 17.
15.
"Heroism in Iceland," American Journal of Nursing, December 1943, p. 1143.

-82-

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They Called Them Angels: American Military Nurses of World War II
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Copyright Acknowledgments v
  • Contents ix
  • Preface xi
  • Note xv
  • Introduction xvii
  • Notes xx
  • Chapter 1 Uncle Sam Wants You! 1
  • Notes 6
  • Chapter 2 from Whites to Fatigues 7
  • Notes 15
  • Chapter 3 Following the Troops 17
  • Notes 21
  • Chapter 4 the Pacific Theater 23
  • Notes 47
  • Chapter 5 the Mediterranean Theater 51
  • Notes 62
  • Chapter 6 the European Theater 65
  • Notes 82
  • Appendix 6a: Rain on A Tent in Normandy 85
  • Appendix 6b: China Doll 86
  • Appendix 6c: the Gardelegen Barn 88
  • Appendix 6d: Second Lieutenant Frances Y. Slanger 92
  • Chapter 7 the China-Burma-India Theater 93
  • Notes 97
  • Chapter 8 the United States and Western Atlantic Minor Theaters 99
  • Notes 106
  • Appendix 8a: Nursing in A Stateside Burn Ward 107
  • Chapter 9 Wild Blue Yonder 109
  • Notes 117
  • Appendix 9a: Tales of An Air Force Nurse 119
  • Chapter 10 Life at Sea 121
  • Notes 135
  • Chapter 11 Camaraderie and Romance 139
  • Notes 152
  • Chapter 12 Leaving a Legacy 155
  • Notes 169
  • Appendices 171
  • Notes 182
  • Bibliography 183
  • Index 207
  • About the Author 213
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