was a beautiful woman with chestnut hair, a rich, warm smile, and
deep blue eyes that displayed brilliance of mind, tenacity and
courage. She would conquer and live her dreams. She would climb into
the heavens without fear. She would fly.
Beginning at the early age of 15, she would fly not just small
planes, but also many large World War II bombers, including the
B-26, B-29 and B-17 Flying Fortress. She was born and lived as a
gifted, independent, extraordinary bird - a WASP (Women's Air
Service Pilots). In recognition of her service during WWII, she was
honored with the Congressional Gold Medal in 2010.
On July 26, 2012, Gertrude Marcia Wenzel Milner, 91, took her last
flight home to Our Father. Born in 1920 in New London, Conn., she
lived for over 47 years in Weekapaug, R.I. Recently, she was a
resident of Essex, Conn. Prior to Weekapaug, Marcia lived in
Bedford, N.Y., and Ocean Reef, Key Largo, Fla., for several years.
Marcia was married to Philip H. Milner Sr. for over 40 years prior
to his passing in 1990. She was beloved by her family and is
survived by her son, Philip H. Milner Jr., married to Pamela Milner,
of Newport Beach, Calif.; her granddaughter, Jessica Milner, of
Newport Beach, Calif.; her grandson, John Milner, married to Kristin
Milner; her great-granddaughters, Amanda and Clara Milner, of
Corona, Calif.; as well as her brother, Clarence "Bill" Wenzel, of
Memorial services will be held Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2012, at 10:30 a.m.
at Christ Church, Westerly. Interment in the adjacent Memorial
Garden will follow. Memorial donations may be made in her honor to
Wings Across America, 1620 S. 9th St., Waco, Texas, 76706 (www.
wingsacrossamerica.us/wings/wall of honor) or the National WASP WWII
Museum, P.O. Box 456, Sweetwater, Texas, 79556 (www.
Arrangements have been entrusted to the Bucker-Johnston Funeral
Home, 121 Main St., Westerly, R.I.
.Published in The Westerly Sun from August 1 to August 2, 2012