Ankeny woman becomes first female enlisted infantry soldier in Iowa National Guard

Published: Oct. 25, 2021 at 11:19 AM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Last month, an Ankeny woman returned from basic training and became the first female enlisted infantry Soldier in the Iowa National Guard. Pfc. Taylor Patterson with Company C, 168th Infantry joined in June 2020 and enlisted infantry. She says her support system at home and her drill sergeants during infantry school pushed her to succeed.

“There obviously was a lot of guys who didn’t think the females were able to do that, but I am like, I am proving it to you,” said Patterson.

In 2016, the U.S. Army opened combat arms positions to women. An infantry Soldier holds a significant role in the U.S. Army. These men and women learn a variety of skills, from squad tactics to close-quarter combat training to engage with the enemy during warfare.

“The Iowa National Guard needs people who are willing and able to take on the challenge of serving in the infantry; Pfc. Patterson is breaking barriers for others to follow,” said Maj. Gen. Ben Corell, The Adjutant General.

There are approximately 9,000 service members in the Iowa National Guard.

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