Oldest Known Veteran to Visit the Women's Memorial

Special Event Notice
July 16, 2015
Contact:Public Relations
703-533-1155 • 800-222-2294
FAX 703-931-4208

The Women In Military Service For America Memorial Foundation is honored to welcome Ms. Emma Didlake, the nation’s oldest known veteran, when she visits the Women’s Memorial on Friday, July 17, at 12:15 p.m. This will be Ms. Didlake’s first visit to her Memorial, which has been made possible by Talons Out Honor Flight, the Southwest Michigan hub of the national Honor Flight Network. According to a Talons Out press release, President Obama will welcome Ms. Didlake to the White House and she will also be visiting the World War II and Roosevelt memorials.

A World War II member of the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC), Ms. Didlake was part of the first group of African American women to join the newly formed WAAC, enlisting in February 1943 and serving until September 1943, a month after the WAAC transitioned to the Women’s Army Corps (WAC). Nearly 38 years old and married with five children when she joined, she served as a driver. According to an expressnews.com article, Ms. Didlake didn’t ask her husband’s opinion or permission, I did it because “I wanted to do different things.”

For more information, call 703-533-1155 or 800-222-2294. The Women’s Memorial, located at the gateway to Arlington National Cemetery, is readily accessible by Metro (Blue Line) and paid parking is available.

The Women In Military Service For America Memorial is the nation’s only major memorial honoring all servicewomen, past and present. Featuring an exhibit gallery, theater and Register of women who have served, the Memorial is open to the public, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., daily.


Note to Media: Because of time constraints, one-on-one interviews with Ms. Didlake are likely not possible. However, she may make public comments. Photos during the visit are welcome, as well as during a brief presentation ceremony at which time she will be presented her Women’s Memorial Member card and Registration by retired Air Force Brig. Gen. Wilma L. Vaught, the Women’s Memorial Foundation president.