By Robert Singletary Special to the Nickel’s Worth
Coeur d’Alene had an important role in the training of pilots during World War II. In 1942, the Buroker-Hicks Flying Service leased Weeks Field, which had been established as a municipal airport in the early 1920s. At that time, the field only had a small hanger with no water or utilities. Within a few months, Buroker-Hicks installed water, electricity, a phone and a heating system, plus a large hanger was constructed. In the spring of 1943, North Idaho Junior College, in conjunction with Buroker-Hicks, was awarded a contract with the War Training Service to house, feed and instruct cross country flyers. To accommodate the students, several Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) buildings from the Beauty Bay area were transported across Lake Coeur d’Alene to the NIJC campus to be used as classrooms. The photo above shows Gladys Buroker, who trained many young pilots that signed up for the pilot training program. TRA-7-4
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