Training As A Nurse Cadet To Support The War Effort On The Home Front In WWII

Shirley "Mary" Barrett


Shirley Barrett grew up in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, in a coal mining community. As a young girl, she enjoyed dancing and music. She recalls the day Pearl Harbor was attacked; she was attending a movie that Sunday when the news broke. She remembers the rationing on the home front during World War II, and she took a job at a factory doing war work. During the war, she volunteered to be a Nurse Cadet, training as a nurse and freeing a more senior nurse to deploy in support of the war effort. She trained at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn. After the war, she continued to work in the nursing field. In this interview, she also talks about meeting her husband, Joe, when she was fourteen. They met at Harvey’s Lake during the summer, and remained friends. They corresponded throughout the war, and were married in 1947.


conflicts World War II
topics Women in Service Camaraderie
interviewer David Siry
date 23 October 2019


name Shirley "Mary" Barrett
service Nurse
unit Kings County Hospital Brooklyn
specialty Nurse Cadet