Della H. Raney was born in Suffolk, Virginia, on January 10, 1912. A graduate of the Lincoln Hospital School of Nursing in Durham, North Carolina, Raney was the first African-American nurse commissioned a lieutenant in the Army Nurse Corps during World War II. Her first tour of duty was at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. As a lieutenant serving at Tuskegee Army Airfield in Alabama, she was appointed Chief Nurse, Army Nurse Corps in 1942, the first African American to be so appointed. She later served as Chief Nurse at Fort Huachuca, Arizona. Raney was promoted to captain in 1945. After the war, she was assigned to head the nursing staff at the station hospital at Camp Beale, California. In 1946, she was promoted to major and served a tour of duty in Japan. Major Raney retired in 1978.
Read Della H. Raney’s story in Profiles of Tuskegee Airmen