Women honored at Veterans Day ceremony

“Women in the military have had their usefulness questioned, and people doubted their fortitude to serve and perform. However, women have stepped up to those challenges and now serve in almost every facet of the military.”
— U.S. Air Force Col. Kara Gormont, 15th Medical Group commander

Story and photos by Tech. Sgt. Heather Redman

15th Wing Public Affairs

Every year the Veterans Day Sunset Ceremony brings together the men, women, and families that fought and served throughout the years. This year was no different when aboard the deck of the Battleship Missouri Memorial, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam honored women veterans, Nov. 11. “The America we know today would not be what it is if it had not been for our brave veterans, both past and present,” said Michael Carr, Battleship Missouri Memorial Association president. “It is the contributions of women that helped make the military one of the most diverse organizations in America.”

Since the founding of the U.S. women have made their mark on the military. With each passing generation, the role women have played in the military has grown.

During the American Revolution, women primarily filled roles as nurses, water bearers, cooks and laundresses, serving on the battlefield alongside men.

In World War II, women not only took to the workforce to fill factory positions that were traditionally held by men, but they also took to the skies and sea.

More than 1,100 Women Air Force Service Pilots and ferried planes across the country and flight-tested aircrafts after a repairs, while members of Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service held the same status of naval reservists.

The Korean and Vietnam Wars saw women taking part in more traditional non-combative roles. Often times serving as clerks or nurses.

“These brave and gallant women paved the way for un-traditional roles for women who wanted to serve their country,” said U.S. Navy retired Rear Adm. Alma Grocki.

“Slowly we’ve seen an increase in varied roles for women in the services. We are proud of those who came before us, proud of what we’ve accomplished, and proud to be American veterans.”

According to the National Center for Veterans Analysis and Statistics, women represent 15 percent of active duty and 19 percent of guard and reserve forces. They are one of the fastest growing populations among veterans and make up more than 10 percent of the total U.S. veteran population.

“Women in the military have had their usefulness questioned, and people doubted their fortitude to serve and perform,” said U.S. Air Force Col. Kara Gormont, 15th Medical Group commander. “However, women have stepped up to those challenges and now serve in almost every facet of the military.”

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Category: News