Although she was known in her military life as WWII WASP Marie Ethel Sharon, she was known to her family as Ethel Marie Cihler. Marie was born in Forsyth, Montana to John P Cihler and Agnes Pearl Douglas. She entered Army Air Force flight training February 14, 1943, at Avenger Field, Sweetwater, Texas and graduated August 7, 1943 in Class W4. She was stationed at Long Beach Army Air Base, California.
On the night of April 10, 1944, Marie and her instructor, Lt. Hinton C. Daniel, took off from Rosecrans Field ferrying base for an instrument training flight. Rosecrans Field, near St. Joseph, MO, was established as an Army Air Force base during WWII. It was raining when the latch on the nose gear door of the B-25D Mitchell Bomber they were flying failed, causing the door to fly off into the propellers on the starboard engine. In conjunction with this, the engine appeared to have failed. They crashed on a farm near Tecumseh, Nebraska, and were both killed.
Marie Ethel Sharon is one of the fallen 38 WASP, who were not recognized as military personnel, and so she did not receive the custom benefits of a military funeral. She could not be buried in one of our national military cemeteries, there was no flag draped over her coffin, no Government headstone, and certainly no custom military aid given to her family for her burial expenses. Often in these cases, fellow WASP would personally contribute to the expenses of the coffin being sent home, and to the funeral expenses.