Behind the Scenes at MTM
This blog is a day-to-day update of what is going on in Mu Tau Mu. Eventually we'll move the older journal entries from our livejournal space but for now to read the archives (entries prior to May 19, 2005), head over to http://www.livejournal.com/users/amzmtm/.
Things you'll hear about here include notification that new photos or other items are posted on our private website (more about the site is here), more detail on our activities than you see in our month-by-month history blog, news from Case, news from the collegiate chapter, news from Alpha Chi Omega at large, and occasionally fun new ideas on their way to implementation. Links to the private site will take you directly to the item mentioned.
To protect the privacy of our members, only first names will be given.
Entries in Veterans' Day (3)
It's becoming a tradition on Veterans' Day to highlight an Alpha Chi Omega alumna for her military service. This year we hope to inspire you with the story of Betty Bachman Buehner, Xi chapter, University of Nebraska. (see her photo here.)
The Great Plains During World War II tells the story of Betty becoming a pilot through the Civil Aeronautics authority at the University of Nebraska:
The Co-Eds Fly for Uncle Sam
THAT old campus maxim, "A coed's place is at tea dances," is taking an awful beating at the University of Nebraska these days. And all because of three little gals who wouldn't take "No" for an answer–not even from Uncle Sam.
When the University of Nebraska was selected by the Civil Aeronautics authority as one of the schools to set up a course for pilot training, men students thought they'd have the field to themselves. But CAA regulations permitted schools to admit women students up to 10 per cent of the total enrollment in the course and the coeds immediately flocked in.
Prof. Jiles W. Haney, chairman of the mechanical engineering department, who is in charge of the course at Nebraska university, got applications from five coeds. But physical examinations put most of them on a snag. CAA requirements called for girls at least 64 inches tall and weighing not less than 115 pounds. And the gal applicants were on the diminutive side.
Nothing daunted they appealed to authorities to make physical requirements a little less exacting. Prof. Haney and I. V. Packard, secretary of the state aeronautics commission finally persuaded Washington to give the girls a break. As a result, it was agreed that coeds 62 inches tall and weighing one hundred pounds would be admitted, providing they could fulfill all other physical requirements.
When final selection of 40 students was made, three coeds got the nod. Like their masculine classmates they were chosen on a basis of scholastic standing and general ability.
One girl was selected from each of the three upper classes in university. Elinor Hakanson of Fairfield is a teachers college senior; Betty Bachman of Omaha, an arts college junior; and Jean Robinson of Lincoln, an arts college sophomore.
Instructors in fields which are traditionally masculine property usually find the presence of a girl in class a distraction. But the three coeds soon gave evidence they were out to show the boys, not distract them.
The collegiennes had to fight to get into the course and they haven't stopped fighting yet. Two of them–Miss Bachman and Miss Hakanson–were first students to solo out of a group of 30 taking instruction at Municipal airport from Lincoln Airplane and Flying school pilots. Miss Robinson will solo as soon as weather permits the field to be properly cleared. The girls were beaten to their solo flights only by a few students taking instruction from Alva White at Arrow airport, who started their flying instruction earlier.
Not only have they proved their right to try their own wings–their conduct in the ground school part of the course has been equally commendable. Prof. Haney says the girls have been set a much better attendance record for classes than the fellows and seem to show a very definite interest in the course. And Miss Robinson copped more laurels for the feminine contingent by ranking third in an examination on engines–that in a class which includes many engineering students!
Miss Bachman was chosen "best dressed girl" on the Nebraska university campus last spring and was a candidate for "Nebraska Sweetheart" this fall. She has curly hair, eyes that crinkle up when she laughs and is labeled "cute" by campus men.
An accomplished artist, she draws, paints and designs many of her clothes. This 20-year-old coed has dreamed of flying for a long time. As one Alpha Chi Omega sorority sister puts it, she's "nuts about flying and there's nothing she wouldn't do to fly." Betty's not sure how she'll use the training, but admitted she hopes to "make a little money from it eventually."
A sorority sister of Miss Bachman's, Elinor Hakanson was lovely enough to be nominated as one of the candidates for Cornhusker beauty queen last year. She and Betty made their solo flights the same day early in December. She is 21, has been crazy about flying as long as she can remember. Elinor expects to teach, but thinks she'll find a way to combine flying with pedagogy.
See the rest of the article here.
Betty went on to complete her training and became a Womens AirForce Service Pilot (WASP). [About WASP: 1,830 were choosen to receive training, 1,074 graduated, and 916 were on duty when they were disbanded. The air miles flown by these women totaled 60,000,000. They flew all of the planes developed for the war, including the Boeing built B-17 and B-29 bombers.] Betty was a member of class 43-2, the Singing Second. She was stationed at Love Field where she flew AT-6 and PT-19 aircraft. Women like Betty being able to fly freed up men pilots to serve overseas. In 2009, Congress honored all the women who served as WASP with the Congressional Gold Medal. Betty passed away in February 1981.
She's featured on this page by the National Archives for her service.
Additional References: http://www.twu.edu/library/wasp/wasppdf/buehner.pdf
With gratitude to all men and women who have served our nation, past and present.
Please join us this week as we say thank you to all our veterans and current members of the armed forces for their service to our nation. If you know an Alpha Chi Omega sister serving (or retired from) the military, today and tomorrow (Veterans' Day) is a great chance to say thank you. Many of you probably also have AXO sisters whose husbands, boyfriends, brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers or other family members are deployed, on active duty, in the reserves, and/or are veterans. These families make big sacrifices and deserve our gratitude. Take a minute to send them a note, post a message on facebook, or give them a call. It will make a difference to them!
Learn more about Alpha Chi Omega and Veterans' Day (and share your story) here http://ow.ly/B34Z and then join us in helping spread the word and our gratitude. Here's how:
On Twitter, tweet a message like this:
Thank you veterans and current members of the armed services! We appreciate you! #AXO #gratitude
Learn more about being a military family from #AXO columnist Brenna Berger http://ow.ly/B3c9 #AXO #gratitude
On facebook, use one of the above tweets as your status, or post thank you messages on your friends who serve in the military or who have family members serving.
On email, share this post with friends, family members and Alpha Chi Omega sisters!
Thank you! We're looking forward to focusing all month on things we as Alpha Chis are thankful for - see a preview at http://ow.ly/B3h5
We begin our month of #gratitude by thanking all our veterans and current members of the armed forces for their service to our nation. If you know an Alpha Chi Omega sister serving (or retired from) the military, today and tomorrow (Veterans' Day) is a great chance to say thank you. Many of you probably also have AXO sisters whose husbands, boyfriends, brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers or other family members are deployed, on active duty, in the reserves, and/or are veterans. These families make big sacrifices and deserve our gratitude. Take a minute to send them a note, post a message on facebook, or give them a call. It will make a difference to them!
Learn more about what it's like to be a military family from Iota Mu (Richmond) alumna Brenna Berger. She writes a column about her life as an Army wife for the Fayetteville Observer in North Carolina. Here is one our favorites http://www.fayobserver.com/Articles/2009/08/27/928077
Here's a little about Alpha Chi's history: From Alpha Chi Omega: The First Fifty Years:
No chapter of the fraternity failed to serve at the time of the country's greatest need. During the World War Alpha Chi Omegas everywhere, like their contemporaries in other fraternities, did all in their power to assist in wartime activities. Red Cross sewing, bandage making and knitting were done in all groups; entertainment for soldiers came from many a chapter, while one turned over its chapter house for government use... Clothing was made and sent to Belgium and to the Near East. From the alumnae were drawn many workers to fill positions in their own communities and in Washington that the war machinery might go on. Twenty-nine of the fraternity's members served their country overseas.
Read more about Alpha Chi Omega's war-time work and contributions here.
If you have a relationship with the military (as a servicewoman, or friend of family member of one), we'd love to hear your story! Please comment below! Thank you!
An Heroic Alpha Chi Omega
Germaine C. Laville (Beta Gamma, Lousiana State University) was the first LSU alumna killed in the line of duty during World War II. In 1951, Laville Dormitory was dedicated at LSU and Beta Gamma donated a portrait of Germaine to hang in the school cafeteria in her honor. In 2006 a Bust was dedicated at Laville East and Laville West, current honors residence halls named in honor of her service. From LSU's website:
CITATION FOR HEROISM
From Marine Corps.
Cpl. Germaine C. Laville
United States Marine Corps Women’s Reserve
Cpl. Germaine C. Laville graduated from Louisiana State University in 1942. She later enlisted as a private in the United States Marine Corps Women’s Reserve in July 1943. Her brothers were too young to enter the military, and she wanted to contribute to the United States war effort in a direct way. She wanted to enter the Women’s Reserve as soon as possible. Upon completion of boot camp at Camp LeJeune, N.C., in December, 1943, she was ordered to the Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C.
Laville’s primary duty was as an aerial gunnery instructor in a large two-story structure called the Synthetic Training Building, or STB. On Saturday, June 3, 1944, more than 50 Marines were preparing to change duty shifts in the STB. Nine civilian cleaning men were also at work waxing the floors. At 2:51 p.m., the highly liquid floor wax thrown by a buffing machine hit the worn wires of a flight simulation machine, in effect setting the entire first floor corridor and lobby ablaze. The devastating fire consumed the wooden building within minutes. Five Marines died and 37 were injured. Laville was last seen inside the burning building, where she gave her life trying to help others escape.
Laville’s life of 22 years was exemplified by altruistic behavior and devotion to others. Her military service and ultimate sacrifice have become a legend in her hometown of Plaquemine, La., and at LSU. While Laville did not receive a Medal of Honor, she is commemorated for the unselfish patriotic service to her country and her fellow Marines.
"LSU’s Department of Residential Life and the Honors College hosted a Bust Dedication Ceremony to honor LSU alumna Germaine C. Laville on Sunday, March 5, 2006, in the East Laville Hall. From left to right are the brothers and sisters of Laville: Betty Bagot, Robert Laville, Jim Laville and Ann Scharfenberg.