In 1943 artist Francis V. Kughler, Hudson River Museum Director H. Armour Smith and Women’s Army Corps recruiter Joanne Coates conceived a plan to encourage women of Yonkers to enlist in the army and honor their contribution. Every Yonkers woman who joined the WACs would have her portrait made in oil or pastel by Kughler.
Another working woman joining the war effort, Loretta Cahill had a job at Yonkers’ Alexander Smith & Sons Carpet Company, where her father also worked at the local carpet factory as a weaver and loom fixer. One of her roles in the U.S. Army was an Air Traffic Controller. While in the Army she met and married Ward L. Kunz at Kearney Air Base on April 24, 1945.