Female World War II Era Pilot Turns 100

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Mayme Tanner at 100 years old is one of the few surviving members of the women’s Air Force service pilots known as WASPs. (Published Monday, Jul 28, 2014)

    Mayme Tanner, one of the last surviving female pilot trainees from World War II, turned 100 years old on July 25th, KPRC reported.

    Tanner is one of 1,000 women who was part of the Women's Air Force Service Pilots (WASPs) which allowed women to fly military aircraft for the first time during the second great war.

    Out of 25,000 women that applied for the opportunity, Tanner made the cut.

    "It was thrilling I enjoyed it, I enjoyed my life very much," she told NBC affiliate KPRC.

    For her birthday, her family and nursing home created a mobile museum full of pictures, uniforms and articles with details from Tanner's past.

    Tanner reflected on her time as one of the first female military pilot trainees: "The freedom it offered, getting in an airplane taking off flying anywhere you wanted to go. I just enjoyed flying around and looking at the scenery."

    Charlotte Mendes, Tanner's niece, told KPRC reporters that her aunt is a humble inspiration.

    "She didn't think she'd ever make it to her hundredth and I told her 'oh yes you will' because she has persevered through everything," Mendes said. "I don't think she realizes at all what she has done for all the women of the country."

    For the next generation of female pilots, Tanner said, "Any girl can do it if they're determined to. Just stay with it."

    The 100-year-old veteran received a letter from President Barak Obama on Friday thanking her for her service, KPRC reported.