Tuesday, November 8, 2011

I liked living in the Mid-West.  Just an opinion, but people seem nicer, life seems slower... 

Lt. Ashley White, Alliance, Ohio

U.S. Army First Lieutenant Ashley White, 24, of Alliance, Ohio, assigned to the 230th Brigade Support Battalion, 30th Heavy Brigade Combat Team, North Carolina National Guard, based in Goldsboro, North Carolina, died on October 22, 2011 in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, from wounds suffered when insurgents attacked her unit with an improvised explosive device. She is survived by her husband Captain Jason Stumpf, her parents Robert and Deborah, brother Josh, and twin sister Brittney.

A Tribute To Ashley

"...Ashley was a true warrior. A member of a Cultural Support Team, she worked in support of Special Operations units and exposed herself to danger on a regular basis. She was a member of only the second class of this elite female team and you can bet that in the decades to come she will go down in history as a trailblazer for women warriors everywhere.

Ashley, by her family’s account, loved being in the military. What struck me most about the obituary in the Fayetteville Observer was the pride her family felt in her service...

...I’m sure there will be those who will gnash their teeth and spout idiocy about how we can’t have America’s daughters coming home in body bags…that war is too dangerous for women…that women don’t belong in special forces. Well Ashley, by her bravery, proved they do. I know she wasn’t on a Special Forces team. Those are for men. But equality doesn’t always mean replication. The Cultural Support Teams are the first iteration of women forging their own unique special forces function and have no doubt it will grow from there. Just as SEAL teams grew from the WWII Scouts and Raiders, OSS Operational Swimmers and Underwater Demolition Teams.

I feel a special kind of grief for 1st Lt. White. I wonder with a start like she had and with her obvious love for her job what she could have been. I wished she had survived to blaze more trails for our sisters in uniform. But she leaves a legacy. And that legacy is a message to the rest of us. This business we have undertaken can be cruel and the losses linger on in perpetuity. But the honor and the sense of purpose and selflessness that comes with taking on the mantel of defending ones nation is a gift. Ashley was out there, side by side with some of the baddest-ass guys we have. And she made a difference. She gave it everything she had and I am so proud that we girls have someone like her to point to and say, “see?”..."


Woodsterman (Odie) said...

Thank you Ashley ... Welcome Home!

Mrs. Bannon said...

Funny that you posted this - while I was voting this morning, although disappointed by the lack of "security" for my vote by not checking IDs, I was filled with excitement about the process of voting and having a voice and the freedom to record that voice...freedom only because of people like Ashley. Great post babe.