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Letters to the Editor

Remembering the women who have served our country

To the Editor:

In 1776, Abigail Adams wrote to her husband John, asking him and other members of the Continental Congress to “remember the ladies” as they legislated. They didn’t. A mere 100 years ago, our nation remembered the ladies, giving women the right to vote.

During this time of seismic shift in race relations, there is a major push to rename military bases because many are named after Confederates. Why not name some of them after females who have figured in our military history?

Col. Ruby Bradley was an Army nurse. When she was captured in the Philippines, she gave most of her rations to starving children and was liberated weighing 86 pounds. She went on to serve in Korea, retiring in 1958. She was one of the most decorated women in U.S. military history.

Dr. Mary Walker, who served during the Civil War, is the only female Medal of Honor recipient.

Spc. Lori Piestewa was the first Native American woman in history to die in combat and the first U.S. military woman killed in the Iraq War.

Brig. Gen. Anna Mae Hays, Army nurse, was promoted to brigadier general in 1970. She became the first woman in the history of the Army to attain the general rank.

Rear Adm. Alene B. Duerk was the first female admiral in the Navy.

Pvt. Cathay Williams was the first black woman to enlist in the U.S. Army and the only known female Buffalo soldier.

Col. Mary Halleren was a member of the first training class of the Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps. She commanded the largest all-female unit to serve overseas. In 1948, as director of the Women’s Army Corps, she advocated for women to be integrated as regular members of the military beyond wartime.

Lt. Col. Marcella Hayes was the first black female pilot in the U.S. military.

I have not added our heroic Sen. Tammy Duckworth to this list. She has miles to go before her service to country is over, but keep her in mind.

Remember the ladies.

Muriel Messer


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