Meet the Curtiss-Wright Aeronautical Engineering Cadettes, 918 brave and bright young women who were trained in WWII to design airplanes. Their work helped salvage the Curtiss-Wright Airplane Company from its own engineering deficiencies in a time of national crisis. But they are WWII's great unsung heroines because the records of their participation in the wartime aviation industry were mysteriously "lost." Their story has never been told - until now.
"Flying Into Yesterday tracks an amazing story that was deliberately cut from American history because women weren't supposed to be aeronautical engineers - but they were, in World War II! Written by the daughter of one of those women, this remarkable book is like a treasure hunt and we get to join in the chase."
- MOLLIE GREGORY (author, Guts and Grace: The Untold Story of Stuntwomen in the Movies)
"Flying Into Yesterday is a long-overdue tribute to a magnificent group of patriotic women who helped win World War II. This powerful story of the accomplishments of the Curtiss-Wright Cadettes, told here with accuracy and affection, should encourage modern women to enter the world where they are vitally needed: aero and space engineering. The author has done a signal service to those who participated in the past - and to those who will take the book's message and participate in the future."
- WALTER BOYNE, Colonel USAF (retired), author, aviation historian,
founder of the National Air & Space Museum
On October 1, 2008, Jean-Vi Lenthe was on her way to New York, planning to "feed her muse" so she could write a play about her family, when she met a woman whose comments about women and engineering redirected her eyes (and feet) onto a wholly unexpected new path. Suddenly Jean-Vi found herself "drafted" into a search for evidence of how (and why) 918 women had been trained -- and utilized -- as aeronautical engineers in World War II and then unceremoniously dumped at the end of the conflict, with all their records mysteriously "lost." It was a story her mother, a high school teacher of English and drama (and one of those engineers) had only mentioned in passing.
While finding the Curtiss-Wright Cadettes, Jean-Vi became friends with three of her mother's WWII buddies (all in their mid-80s) and rediscovered her own youthful passion for journalism and digging into hidden history. The result is an intriguing tapestry of memoir, history, and investigative journalism.