During Memorial Day weekend,
May 26, 2003, the Women's Memorial will open a new exhibit on Native
American Women in the US Armed Forces.
||Shirley Chase, summer intern
with the Office of History and Collections, attending an ExxonMobil
event, summer 2002.
Shirley Chase, Dineh
from Dilcon, Navajo Nation, Arizona, served as an intern with the
Women's Memorial Office of History and Collections last summer (2002)
and laid the groundwork for this exhibit.
Ms. Chase conducted 10
oral history interviews with diverse Native American women who gave
their perspectives on why Native American women chose to join the
armed forces, how their cultural backgrounds and gender influenced
their experience, what they did in the military and how this profession
affected their lives.(See www.volunteerfairfax.org
to learn about this Exxon Mobil-sponsored internship program.)
||LTC Brenda Finnicum
Lieutenant Colonel Brenda
Finnicum was among those interviewed. She is a member of the Lumbee
Nation and the only woman in her family to join the military. Lieutenant
Colonel Finnicum joined the Army Nurse Corps in November 1978 and
retired in December 2000 after 20 years active duty and two years
in the reserves. She is a lecturer and maintains a web
site dedicated to finding and sharing the history of Native American
edited highlights of Lieutenant Colonel Finnicum's interview,
explaining the interaction of her Lumbee heritage and her gender
in the decision to join the Army Nurse Corps in 1978.