Buddie Curnutte

2014 ALMBS – “Buddie” Curnette with Rosie the Riveters

Bertha (“Buddie”) Curnutte was a riveter on P40 and C47 airplanes in Cheetawaga, NY, about 50 miles east of Buffalo at Curtis Wright Manufacturing, for two years during World War II. One of her most vivid memories is that a plane crashed while being test flown from the grounds, which heightened the women’s concerns to do first-quality work. “Every rivet we made was with worry that if we did a bad job, lives would be lost.”

 

Then, she joined the Coast Guard and chose the medical corps to contribute in a different way. She remembers 100s of women on the train going to the all-male Coast Guard base on Manhattan Beach, Sheep’s Head Bay, Brooklyn, and when they arrived,they were the first women, and guards surrounded the base to keep men out. They marched constantly, it was January and snowy, they did not have uniforms, and women who had only high

Rosie Bertha “Buddie” Curnutte Speaks to ALMBS

Buddie Curnutte, Board Member for Thanks! Plain and Simple (“Thanks!”). She exemplifies the abilities and desires of Rosies to assure that their legacy will be passed to the future, validly and meaningfully. She grew up in Appalachian New York state where she was a riveter on Kitty Hawk airplanes, then she became a medical technician in the Coast Guard, where she met and married Earl Curnutte, a West Virginian, who had lost a leg and had other injuries.“I am both a veteran and a Rosie. At age 88, I now see that we Rosies need to learn more about what we did, so that we can teach what we have done and are doing.