When Jaye Edwards takes a moment to reflect on her service during the Second World War, the first thing that comes to mind is a clear sky.
"All the beautiful blue sky, nothing but blue sky," Edwards said, with a nostalgic sigh. "Maybe there was the odd little white puff."
"You never really thought about the past — you just lived for the moment," she recounted.
Edwards served as a pilot during the war. She flew more than 20 different types of planes — from Spitfires to bombers — and took flight hundreds of times. Now just a few months shy of her 100th birthday, she's one of the last surviving members of the famed "Attagirls," a group of just over 160 women who flew warplanes from factories to the front lines.
When she was in her early 20s, she made good on a childhood dream to become a pilot by enrolling in the National Women's Air Reserve — a small flight school that would convene on Sundays. Five hundred training hours later, she was certified. Then, the war machine took over.
"It was in '39 when I got my licence. It arrived the day after war was declared," she said.
Today, Edwards is one of three remaining female ATA pilots, alongside Eleanor Wadsworth of the United Kingdom and Nancy Stratford of the United States, according to the ATA Association.
Jaye Edwards holds one of her several medals received after she served Britain's Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) during the 1940s. (Jon Hernandez/CBC).