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    A USARCENT WWII Army Combat Nurse Uniform Stands in a case that holds untold stories

    A USARCENT WWII Army Combat Nurse Uniform Stands in a case that holds untold stories

    Photo By Spc. Amber Cobena | Liz Burns admires the uniform display of her older sister, 1st Lt. Ruth McDonald, as...... read more read more



    Story by Spc. Amber Cobena 

    U.S. Army Central   

    Stopped in her tracks, 85-year-old Liz Burns pressed her hands over her mouth in amazement at the display of her oldest sister's WWII uniform, 1st Lieutenant Ruth McDonald, a combat nurse, taking Liz back to when she was 8 years old and saw Ruth arrive home from the war.

    “These are tears of happiness,” said Liz, as she embraced the glass case accompanied by her son Mark and family.

    Ruth's uniform was hung up on a coat hanger and kept in a dark closet, after the war. But on rainy days, her nephews like Mark, would put it on and pretend to be soldiers, creating memories that her family recalls fondly.

    Ruth's uniform one of 200 artifacts on display at Patton Hall, but it is the only female World War II Service Uniform. The uniform is accompanied by a textbook of handwritten letters that wrote to her family during the war.

    Back in the 1940s, women who wanted to serve only had two options, join the Army Nurse Corps, or the Women Army Corps. As for Ruth, she finished college, then swore into the Army Nurse Corps just before the Pearl Harbor incident brought the US into World War II. Ruth served in the 30th Field Hospital assigned to Third Army during the Second World War. She provided medical care for casualties from August 1944 to May 1945.

    According to her family, Ruth was proud to be in the Army, but was very private about her whole experience. After Ruth's passing, her family read the letters she wrote from 1939 to 1945 and realized the impact of her role in the war.

    “Ruthie was part of a handful of nurses that climbed off a ship, down a rope ladder, and set up tents and a hospital on Omaha Beach while supporting Patton's Third Army,” explained Mark Burns, Ruth's nephew. He went on to say that Ruth's uniform display reminds him of the legacy of our Army’s heritage.



    Date Taken: 05.06.2022
    Date Posted: 05.12.2022 09:12
    Story ID: 420526
    Location: SHAW AFB, SC, US
    Hometown: BRAINTREE, MA, US

    Web Views: 10
    Downloads: 0