York Town Square

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WASPs Aviator Mary Reineberg Burchard honored: Linked in with neat York County, Pa., history stuff – March 17, 2010

WASP Mary Reineberg Burchard

World War II WASP pilot Mary Reineberg Burchard, then a York County (Pa.) resident, is pictured in one of the exhibits developed in conjunction with the recent awarding of Congressional Gold Medals to “Fly Girls.” The medal is the highest civilian honor granted by Congress. Here’s how a York Daily Record/Sunday News story (3/11/10) about York’s aviator started: “When Mary Reineberg Buchard (sic) was growing up in York, she would exclaim: ‘I’m going to be an aviatrix!’ The daughter of a shoe store owner studied at Temple University, became a podiatrist and opened a practice in York. She also bought an airplane with other people, learned how to fly and became a certified pilot in York. She served in the Civil Air Patrol. So when the call came for women to fly military planes in non-combat missions during World War II,  Buchard asked her father, Jacob Reineberg, if she could serve her country. He consented, and she gave up her practice. Buchard became one of the ‘fly girls’ who served as Women Airforce Service Pilots, also known as WASPs. The aviators tested planes and ferried them wherever they needed to go.” The former pilot, now in her 90s, lives in California. Also of interest: York County poet: ‘Her words helped win the war’ and Nurses and their work appear again and again in York County’s past and Pioneering aviator Aline Rhonie another York native who made U.S. headlines.

A mixed bag of neat stuff… .
When Ella Fitzgerald came to York to observe the renovation of the Strand-Capitol Performing arts center in 1980, the evening became a night to remember. It generated the memorable newspaper quip: “They came to hear Ella Fitzgerald. It was indeed memorable, not Memorex. And they came to enjoy the York Symphony in its well-deserved and long-awaited home.” …

The Memorex reference came from a then-popular commercial in which a recording of Fitzgerald’s powerful voice could break a glass.
Anyway, the Strand-Capitol is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year with a special Tribute to Ella Fitzgerald starring Freda Payne on April 11.
It’s tagged as an “Ella-bration.”
– You’ve read Yorkblogger Scott Mingus’ Civil War books, but have you ever heard his voice. Here, he talks about his recent book about the Louisiana Tigers with an interviewer.
Blog post of the day: Yorkblogger June Lloyd tells about – and shows photos of – the last days of York City Market.
Forum of the day, The Exchange: What do you remember about York County’s barber shops?
– To see all York Town Square posts from the start, click here.
– To see all York County women’s history posts, click here.
Photo courtesy of Kate Redshaw.

*Edited, 2/10/12