The 70th anniversary of D-day is less than a week away.
With so much time having past, members of the Great Generation that fought the war are increasingly passing from the scene. And so finding appropriate ways to remember their contribution is more important than ever.
In this post, we will update you on one such effort with a Michigan connection. It concerns efforts to create a museum at the Detroit-area auto plant associated with the iconic figure of Rosie the Riveter.
Rosie the Riveter was a composite figure who symbolized the entry of American women into industrial production jobs during World War II. According to an online encyclopedia, a song bearing the character's name was a big hit in 1942, America's first full year in the war.
One of the real people who was closely associated with the symbolic Rosie the Riveter figure worked at the Willow Run bomber plant in the Detroit area. This was one of many industrial facilities where women went to work during the war, replacing men who were fighting overseas.
The site of the Willow Run plant is now owned by a trust called the Revitalizing Auto Communities Environmental Response Trust (RACER). RACER took over many former industrial sites across the country following a bankruptcy filing by General Motors a few years ago.
A group that is trying to build a World War II-era museum on the Willow Run site is negotiating with RACER to acquire a portion of the massive plant.
A woman named Rose Will Monroe - one of the real-life inspirations for the Rosie the Riveter symbol - worked at the site during the war, building bombers. It is located in Ypsilanti
A purchase is expected soon, with the deal to close sometime in July.
Obviously a real estate deal like this has to be negotiated carefully. But the deal seems likely to go forward, enabling the creation of a museum to honor Rosie the River and all the women she symbolized.
Source: Lansing State Journal, "Deal coud soon be signed for Rosie the Riveter's Detroit factory," Mike Householder (AP), June 2, 2014