Abbie Voorhies

Abbie Voorhies was born August 20, 1915 in Louisiana. She was a graduate of Kansas City General Hospital Nursing School. Her first job was with Charity Hospital in New Orleans, Louisiana. She said she joined the military after hearing that nurses in the Army Nurse Corps were not discriminated in pay as she was in Louisiana. This second lieutenant was transferred from Camp Livingston in Louisiana where she was chosen to escort four other nurses to Tuskegee Army Air Field (TAAF). She was a medical nurse who was a night nurse on wards three and four. She said she believes she married Mac Ross in June of 1943. Mac Ross was a member of the 99th Pursuit Squadron. He was one of the five who was in the first class of Tuskegee Army Flying School graduates, which included Benjamin O Davis, Jr. In the October 15, 1943 Hawk’s Cry, there was the following item: “LT Abbie Voorhies will leave October 15th to visit her husband, LT Mac Ross at Selfridge Field, Michigan.”

Captain Mac Ross was reported killed in July of 1944 in Europe “ in a crash while on a local transition flight during the squadron’s conversion from P-40 to P-51 aircraft.” He had been the 332nd Fighter Group operations officer overseas. The Mrs. Ross had been promoted to first lieutenant by March 15, 1946 and was one of the first five nurses who was transferred from TAAF to LAAB as the Tuskegee base was closing. She eventually was promoted to captain. She later married a Deverges and had two boys, settling in Los Angeles, California. (1942 yearbook, Hawk’s Cry, Tuskegee Airmen Chronology by Daniel L. Haulman, Organizational History Branch, Air Force Historical Research Agency, Maxwell AFB, Alabama, March 13, 2014, station hospital roster, interview)