Women veterans invited to share their stories

Published: Jun. 15, 2022 at 11:04 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Brandy Fix has lots of stories about her time in the Marine Corps: boot camp, combat training, promotions, dating a civilian while in the service, getting ready for the Marine Corps ball, and being an Iron Woman are just a few.

An event coming up is a chance for her to share those stories with others who can relate to them.

June 23 is the Women Veterans Day Dinner and Celebration. The event is sponsored by IowaWORKS Cedar Rapids, the Linn County VA, and the Iowa City VA Health Care System.

Tonya Goodburn is a women’s health social worker at the Iowa City VA Health Care System. She said the event will be “a time for veterans and women reservists and National Guard—for them to be able to come together and talk about their stories and their ‘whys’ of why they joined the military.”

Dakota Andrew is a Disabled Veteran Outreach Program Specialist at IowaWORKS. “Women veterans is one of the fastest-growing demographics. I believe it might have been in a VA stat that came out that there are 18,000 women veterans in Iowa. So the demographic’s there.”

Fix said that while she served she was “treated no different” than her male counterparts. However, she has heard of women veterans receiving different treatment from civilians.

“Not just for myself, but I speak for several—I’ve got a couple of female friends that are veterans as well. And they just go to park in a veteran parking spot, and somebody will make comments to them,” said Fix. “You shouldn’t park there, unless it’s your father, your husband’s with you. And so I think because we don’t look like we’re military...I think we’re sometimes overlooked as veterans.”

The event is a way to share all the different experiences that come with being a female veteran.

“You go to the VA and you see a tons of male veterans, you hardly ever see any other females. So I think with this event, it’s a chance for you to get to meet other female veterans in the area,” said Fix. “It’s your chance to, you know, make connections and possibly friends. Talk to other people who’ve been through what you’ve been through. So it’s just, you know, great for something to just acknowledge female veterans.”

The free event is June 23. The link to register can be found here.

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