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Saturday, June 02, 2012

Female fighter wing commander breaking ground for her gender

Col. Jeannie M. LeavittCol. Jeannie M. Leavitt on Friday became the first woman in Air Force history to take her first salute as commander of a fighter wing.

She returned the salute from the airmen in light-blue short-sleeved shirts standing in formation on a hot, humid morning after taking command of the 4th Fighter Wing at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base.

Leavitt, 45, is an F-15E Strike Eagle command pilot from St. Louis. She replaced Col. Patrick J. Doherty as commander of the 5,000-airman wing during the outdoor ceremony on Wright Brothers Avenue. In the official remarks, no one mentioned that she is shattering another glass ceiling in the Air Force.

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