The four women officers flying the mission represented just a portion of the military women who supported this mission, making it the first all-female military combat mission from tasking to completion.
Before they were famous, many truly influential men and women started by serving their country in the US military or grew up in military families.

All-female Air Mission Makes History

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March 2011 will go down as a historic date in military history, according to 455th Air Expeditionary Wing historian Lt. Col. Kenneth Tilley, marking the first combat mission flown from Afghanistan to be planned, maintained, and flown entirely by females.

Executed with professionalism and grace, the F-15E Strike Eagles of "Dudette 07" provided air support for coalition and Afghan ground forces.

STRONG FOUNDATION FOR MILITARY WOMEN

Two pilots and two weapons system officers ran the mission, but the operation required support from military woman at all levels, such as Capt. Kristen Wehle, F-15 Liaison Officer at the combined air operations center.

According to Capt. Leigh Larkin, 389th EFS Weapons Systems Officer, the four women officers flying the mission represented just a portion of the military women who supported this mission, making it the first all-female military combat mission from tasking to completion.

"Dudette 07" was arranged to honor Military Women's History Month, but the inspiration for the mission came from military history and personal experience.

One such inspiration was Lieutenant Flynn, the first female fighter pilot to graduate from the U.S. Air Force Weapons School since female pilots were admitted to pilot training in 1976.

Staff Sgt. Tamara Rhone, a 455th Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron crew chief, credited women throughout military history for building a strong foundation for women's equality and equal opportunity. Military women made it possible for today's military and civilian women to be respected as equals and individuals. Staff Sgt. Rhone hopes to see more females join the military maintenance career field.



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