Mae Krier, one of the original Rosie the Riveters from World War II, recently had her wish to travel to the American Rosie the Riveter Association’s convention in Richmond, CA.
Krier, 89, is one of the original “Rosie the Riveter’s of World War II. In 1943, after just graduating from high school in North Dakota, Krier and her family moved to Seattle for war work. At the young age of 17, she got a job working on B-17s and B-29s for Boeing in Seattle. One of her proudest memories is helping to build the 5 Grand, the 5,000th B-17 made by Boeing after Pearl Harbor. Krier, still a teenager at the time, and her co-workers painted their names on her fuselage. They were so proud of their hard work they pushed the plane out of the factory door onto the tarmac themselves. The 5 Grand passed inspection despite its lack of camouflage; the U.S. Army Air Corps made an exception thinking that the autographed plane would be good for morale. Krier kept track of the plane carrying her rivets as it flew 78 missions over Europe, shooting down two Nazi planes.
While in Seattle, Krier met her husband, Norm, a Navy man on the dance floor at the Service Man’s Center there. They married din April of 1945, just before the war ended and were married for 69 years until his passing in June of 2014. Shortly after they married, Norm was transferred to the naval air station in Pasco, Washington. Krier got a job at the base packing supplies to be sent overseas and worked alongside Italian prisoners of war who were interned at the base.
The ARRA reunion was held in Richmond, California and lasted for three days. Krier had a wonderful time and had the opportunity to exchange war stories with fellow “Rosies.” She meets regularly with other Rosies in the Philadelphia area and maintains contact with some from far-away places. After the convention, she added a few more to her list