Jones, Dorothy

Dorothy Jones was born November 29, 1920 in Lancaster, South Carolina.  She grew up there with her five siblings, against the backdrop of the Great Depression and the early years of the war.  Her father was a barber, and as Dorothy recalls that meant that he held onto his job during the lean years, but that the family had to work to make ends meet.  Dorothy graduated high school and went into the world of work, doing typing and filing duties in a local office.  One day she saw an advertisement from the American military, looking for women to get involved in the armed forces.  The attack on Pearl Harbor would push Dorothy and her brothers into service; Dorothy’s mother had her concerns but her young daughter chose to become one of the Navy WAVES (Women Accepted for Voluntary Emergency Service).  Her brothers went into the Army Air Corps, Navy and Marines respectively, and they saw action in the different theaters of the war.  Dorothy went to Oklahoma for training, and her first posting was in Charleston, S.C.  Dorothy loved that city, but then another opportunity came up – Hawaii.  Dorothy put in for a transfer and soon she was travelling cross-country; once on the west coast she boarded a ship bound for Hawaii.  Dorothy would spend the remainder of her service on the big island, stationed near the airfield at Hilo.  Her duties were centred around office work, though there was ample opportunity for leisure time.  Dorothy would spend one year in Hawaii, and when VJ Day came she was home within a few weeks, finding ways – like so many of her generation – to return to normal life.  She and a friend had thought about finding a way to serve in Japan, but Dorothy soon met Shannon, and the two of them married in 1948 and built a life and a family in California.  Crestwood students were able to zoom with Dorothy on May 7, 2023.