DAV Magazine March/April 2018 : Page 20

WOMEN’S MILITARY HISTORY A TIMELINE OF Women serve as laundresses and nurses . 1775–1883 DEBORAH SAMPSON 1861–1865 CIVIL WAR DR. MARY E. WALKER disguises herself as a man and serves 17 MONTHS . 1901 the Army Nurse Corps . N First, and so far only, woman awarded the MEDAL OF HONOR 1941–1945 WORLD WAR II overseas deployment 1917–1918 WORLD WAR I 88 held as prisoners of war Nazly Confesor’s many deployments over her military career included service from 2011 to 2012 in Afghanistan, where she was injured by an improvised explosive device. Confesor still deals with balance problems and other issues but has overcome her injuries and now works in the government sector. More than make the ultimate sacrifice. 400 1948 her country,” she said. “We are our own new breed of soldier—not the traditional image you’d perceive. Women veterans everywhere are breaking the mold we were given. I am proud to be a female veteran and advocate for my sisters and brothers in the armed forces.” Nazly Confesor of DAV Chapter 10 in Fairfax, Va., deployed to Afghanistan in 2011. While on foot patrol, she suffered a concussion as a result of an improvised explosive device on Dec. 29, 2011, in the Panjwayi district, Kandahar. For her, adjusting to life back home was a challenge. “I had an identity issue in terms of being a civilian woman again and couldn’t relate and talk about my experiences with women who haven’t been in a combat environment,” she said. Another shift further indicating a pressing need to restructure our support systems for veterans is that— according to the DAV report—by 2020, the woman veteran population will increase. “I feel like society sees us as nurturers and caretakers. I shake my head in disappointment at times when people thank male service members in front of me,” Confesor said. “Our society needs to realize that women veterans are not delicate or weak. This type of perception needs to change.” Q 20 VIETNAM NAVY CMDR. ELIZABETH BARRETT 1962–1972 Women’s Armed Services Integration Act allows WOMEN to become full members of the armed forces . Prior to 1948, women could only serve in a time of war. 1975 1985 First woman to COMMAND IN A COMBAT ZONE VA appoints first WOMEN VETERANS COORDINATORS . National Vietnam Veterans Readjustment Study is first national study on veterans to include women. Women no longer discharged after becoming pregnant or adopting a child. 1980 The American Census Bureau records 1.2 million WOMEN VETERANS —acknowledging the group has been largely overlooked. Policy excluding women from combat is REVERSED . 2013 1998 Female fighter pilots engage in combat. SHAYE HAVER KRISTEN GRIEST LISA JASTER FIRST 3 WOMEN to complete U.S. ARMY RANGER SCHOOL 2015 2017 First female Marine graduates from INFANTRY OFFICER COURSE . DAV elects FIRST FEMALE NATIONAL COMMANDER All military specialties, including combat-related jobs, open to women. Army welcomes first FEMALE infantry officer . 2016 DELPHINE METCALF-FOSTER DAV MAGAZINE MARCH | APRIL 2018

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