Helen is the wife of veteran John Fidler. She was born on February 9, 1921. While her husband was serving in the Air Force, she and her sister got jobs working on the B-24s, at the Willow Run Bomber Plant. They became riveters, attaching the gas tanks to the insides of the wings. One riveter would put in the rivet with a metal gun, and a riveter on the other side flattened it with a bucking bar. Once, one of the rivets put a hole in Helen’s thumb. They were paid in cash, with many two-dollar bills. Nevertheless, she wanted to work for her country and really enjoyed it. Later, in Norfolk, Virginia, she worked at a PX, and had two German prisoners of war working for her. She said that they worked really hard and were glad to be in the U.S., instead of a POW camp.
Dates of Service
World War, 1939-1945
Veterans History Project, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress