Thursday, November 16, 2006

Another Minnesota first

Something you wouldn't (really, couldn't) have seen 40 years ago.

The Minneapolis Aquatennial Queen of the Lakes is trading her tiara for a kevlar helmet and the sands of Iraq.

Jessica Gaulke, chosen in July as Queen of the Lakes for a year, is giving up her title because her National Guard unit has been activated for duty in Iraq. Gaulke, 22, a sociology student at Augsburg College who visited Japan as part of her Aquatennial ambassador duties, will be going to the Mideast as a diesel generator mechanic.

As far as anyone knows, it's the first time an Aquatennial queen has been in the military, much less called to active duty during her reign.

Good for her. And us. Not because we're in Iraq, but because of what it says about the military, increasing opportunities for women and changing societal attitudes toward them.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although I've never been a beauty queen, I am in the Guard. She's definitely a role model and has amazing character. It's women like her, and men with similar traits, that make our Armed Forces a great national asset and the best military in the world.

Maybe I'll make a trip up to the Rose Bowl just for a possible opportunity to shake her hand and say, "Thanks for serving".

LT (Capt in March) in CA

11/17/2006 11:09 AM  

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