This image accompanied a group of letters in the February 1919 Norwester magazine titled “Paragraphs from Some of Our Folks Overseas.” The letters were from U.S. Army officers and enlisted men as well as a Red Cross nurse. They were written near the end of the war, the first major war in which air power played a significant part. The effect on soldiers is evident in a letter from Corporal John Hill of the Artillery, American Expeditionary Forces (A.E.F.) in France. He wrote, “Gee! but it’s great to be able to walk out thru the fields in the daytime without hearing the whine of big shells overhead and without fear of being spotted by an aeroplane–also to be able to sleep in billets where you can have plenty of light at night instead of sleeping in a little hole in the ground without any lights or fire, and to know that you can walk out in the open whenever you want to without having to put a tin hat on your head, your gas mask over your shoulder and your automatic on your hip, and still feel perfectly safe in doing so.”
During World War I, United States aviators flew as a part of the U.S. Army, since the U.S. Air Force did not become a separate military service until September 18, 1947. One of the most famous WWI American fighter aces was Eddie Rickenbacker, a native of Columbus, Ohio. Residents of Upper Arlington remember him landing his plane in the emergency landing field located at Andover and Tremont Roads after the war.