A story published today by the Air Force News Service paid homage to Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese-American woman aviator and the first Chinese-American woman to fly for the United States military.
She joined the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) and ferried planes from factories to air bases. Hazel named each of those planes and wrote those names in lipstick on the tail’s of those planes.
Her missions were not without danger, according to the Air Force News Service, Once she made an emergency landing on a wheat field and was subsequently chased around the field by a farmer who screamed that the Japanese had landed and was invading Kansas. Of couse, Haze was Chinese.
She survived that incident, but was killed in the line of duty when an air traffic controller gave her and another pilot identical instructions and the two plane’s collided. She was the last WASP to die in the line of duty.