Posted at: 07/25/2012 5:13 PM
Updated at: 07/25/2012 5:21 PM
By: Brianna Long
Minnesota Women Could Make Military History
(ABC 6 News) -- For the first time in our nation's history, women will be able to serve closer to the front lines in the military. Two Minnesota women have recently enlisted in the Army, and are the first in the state that will be field artillery fire finder operator specialists.
When Stephanie Reese, and Kindra Pfaff first walked into the Army recruiting office in Rochester, they had a goal in mind.
"I joined the army to serve my country, go on an adventure, become part of something," said Pfaff.
"I wanted to better myself, make something of myself, be part of a team," said Reese.
A special team that, until two months ago, wasn't even an option for them or any other women.
"These soldiers are going into a new MOS that is opened up for females. It's 13 Romeo, its gonna be part of the field artillery units. So it's a very exciting time, not only for them but for the US Army, " said Staff Sgt. Richard Dusenbery.
After their initial training periods, these teenagers will be field artillery fire finder operator specialists.
"Basically, it's going to be fire support for ground troops that are in combat. They'll be shooting artillery shells from a distance onto precise targets," said Dusenbery.
They don't leave until September, but these soldiers are already in training. In this case, just outside the recruiters' office.
"I told my recruiter that I wanted something exciting, something I would love to do, and that is pretty much why I did choose it. It would be exciting and new, and I've got to prove to those boys that girls can do it," said Reese.
"It's an honor, and we have everything more to prove than just being women in the military. It will be hard, but worth it," said Pfaff.
The army has opened up six new specialties for female soldiers, after the Department of Defense changed the rules about women in combat. The new policy was partly due to a change in the definition of the word combat at the pentagon, after the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Both Reese and Pfaff are scheduled to go into formal training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma.