Thursday, December 30, 2010

My own Rosie the Riveter

The face of a generation of women who served at the homefront in World War II.

Geraldine Hoff Doyle, who was believed to be the unwitting model for the “We Can Do It!” poster of a woman flexing her biceps in a factory during World War II — an image that later became a symbol for the American feminist movement — died on Sunday in Lansing, Mich. She was 86.

The cause was complications of arthritis, said her daughter Stephanie Gregg.

Mrs. Doyle was unaware of the poster’s existence until 1982, when, while thumbing through a magazine, she saw a photograph of it and recognized herself. Her daughter said that the face on the poster was her mother’s, but that the muscles were not.

“She didn’t have big, muscular arms,” Mrs. Gregg said. “She was 5-foot-10 and very slender. She was a glamour girl. The arched eyebrows, the beautiful lips, the shape of the face — that’s her.”

In 1942, when she was 17, Geraldine Hoff took a job as a metal presser at a factory near her home in Inkster, Mich., near Detroit, to aid the war effort, Mrs. Gregg said. One day, a United Press photographer came in to shoot images of working women.

My mom worked at the Rayovac plant during the war. She then married a garrulous Airborne vet, raised five kids successfully, and supported a husband up the corporate ladder, including multiple moves.

She passed away last night.

Labels: ,


Blogger Thomas said...

OK, I admit it. You were her favorite.
Her oldest, with love.
(you can't deny that!)

9:31 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Weblog Commenting by Site Meter