The Tulsa, Oklahoma, native, who was born on August 26, 1921, has died in Longview, Washington, according to the New York Times. The California waitress-turned-factory worker began her job at the Naval Air Station in Alameda and was among the first women to be assigned to the machine shop after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in late 1941.
Then in 1942, 20-year-old Fraley posed for a photograph wearing her signature red-and-white-polka-dot bandana and working on a turret lathe, for a photographer touring the Naval Air Station, where she and younger sister Ada drilled and patched airplane wings as well as operated rivet machines.
“The women of this country these days need some icons. If they think I’m one, I’m happy about that,” she said.