1938 D'Youvillian yearbook

Aviator and World War II pilot Ann Wood-Kelly graduated from D’Youville College in 1938.  After graduation, Ann attended the Civilian Pilot Training Program at Bowdoin College for flight training, earning her the nickname, “Bowdoin’s Amelia Earhart.”  At the time, Bowdoin was an all-male school, and Ann was the first woman to earn academic credit at the College.

She would eventually become a flight instructor for the program.  In 1942 at age 24 she joined the Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) in Great Britain.  Women made up about 12% of ATA’s pilots and were called “Atagirls.”  Ann’s duties involved flying planes (without radar or radios) from factories to airbase combat squadrons, and damaged planes back for repair. Continue reading