Meet Virginia


Virginia Barlow Browning was the life of the party. Her four siblings remember her as bringing home more friends than anyone else in the house combined and organizing trips, clubs, and parties. Such social and leadership skills served her well in the many jobs she pursued throughout her life.

Virginia was highly intelligent, caught on quickly, and excelled at skills needed during WWII. Staff recruited her at the local canning factory after the gentlemen had gone off to war, and she didn't let them down.

But even more important to the war effort was her productivity on the assembly line at a factory that was manufacturing military aircraft engines. With many of the men off to war, more than half the workforce during the war years were women. Her supervisors soon realized her capabilities were suited to electronics assembly as well, and she soon played a role in the manufacture of search light reflectors for the U.S. Navy. Her efforts even contributed to the ultra-secret project that developed the atomic bomb. So you might conclude that her efforts also contributed to the end of the war.

Before the war ended, however, she fearlessly traveled thousands of miles to wed her fiance who was on leave and in love. The marriage produced two daughters who forged their own trails of courage.


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September 21, 2021 — Jennifer Jarvis

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