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It is with distinct honor and a fitting tribute on this special day of commemoration and dedication, that we bring recognition to an outstanding American hero. She was a member of the Greatest Generation, The World War II Generation. This outstanding American is SENIOR MASTER SARGEANT (SMSGT). Cora M.Einfeldt, who in her death leaves an outstanding legacy in the U.S. Military for almost 40 years of service. She is not only a Veteran of World War II, but a veteran of the Korean War, and the Vietnam War. She began her military career at the age of 22 on Sept. 1, 1943 when she enlisted in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Soon after, she became part of the Women's Army Corps (WAC), when the US Army opened a branch for women in the military. When the US Air Force did the same, Cora was allowed to transfer and moved to Women in the Air Force (WAF), and retired after 30 years of outstanding service to her country only to continue as a reservist for almost 10 more years: ending as the first ever, female, 1st SGT of the 68th Tactical Airlift Squadron of the 433rd Alamo Wing, headquartered at Kelly Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Earl Houser of Hagerstown, Maryland. Ms Einfeldt attended Funkstown Elementary School and South Potomac Junior High and graduated from Hagerstown High in 1942. Unable to afford college, she worked for a while at Black and Decker in Baltimore and then enlisted in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps in 1943, taking Basic Training at Daytona Beach, Florida before entering Army Administrative School in Conway, Arkansas. A highly energetic, disciplined service member, she received numerous awards and citations for outstanding performance including the Army Commendation Medal. According to wing sources SMSgt Cora M. Einfeldt was the first woman in a Tactical Air Command and perhaps the US Air Force to be named as a first sergeant for an Air Force flying squadron. Once named "Outstanding Airman of Year", SMSGT, Cora Einfeldt was a superb leader and administrator who didn't take slack from anyone. She was known for maintaining high standards, even if it meant correcting Officers senior in rank to her. She was highly respected by her peers, her subordinates and her superiors. It was at Lackland Air Force Base that then Staff Sergeant Cora Houser (her maiden name) became the bride of Staff Sergeant George H. Einfeldt in a military wedding in the base chapel. They both cherished 50 years together sharing the same rank of SMSGT RETIRED, before George's passing. Her legacy will remain as breaking the glass ceiling for women in the Military. At age 91, her strength and stamina was of one half her age. Her friends will miss her dearly. In lieu of flowers contributions can be sent to the Animal Defense League of Texas, 11300 Nacogdoches Rd., San Antonio, TX 78217. The visitation will be held on Tuesday, March 12, 2013 from 6:00 - 9:00 P.M. at Sunset Northwest Funeral Home, 6321 Bandera Rd. The funeral service will be held on Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at 11:30 A.M. at the funeral home. The interment with military honors will follow at Ft. Sam Houston National Cemetery. To sign the online guestbook, please log on to www.sunsetnorthfuneralhome.com.
Published in Express-News on Mar. 10, 2013