Mon, Jul 21, 2003 - Page 4 News List

Marines choose woman to serve as platoon leader

CNA , TAIPEI

Lee Chia-na (李佳娜), a graduate of the Chinese Naval Academy, recently became the marine corps' first female platoon leader, military sources said yesterday.

Lee chose to join the marines after her graduation from the academy last year with the second highest score in her class.

She completed professional training at the marine corps school and artillery school earlier this month and was commissioned as an aviation platoon leader responsible for the firing of Stinger surface-to-air missiles and Chaparral self-propelled air-defense missiles.

Chen Kuo-hsiang (陳國祥), director of the Marine Corps Headquarters' political warfare department, said Lee was the first female officer to choose to serve in the corps.

"Over the past year, she has performed fairly well in basic marine corps officer training programs," Chen said, adding that Lee has won the admiration of all officers and enlisted men at the corps aviation battalion with her competence and perseverance.

Lee said she had yearned to become a naval officer since her adolescence.

With the support of her family and teachers, Lee gave up the opportunity to study in the chemical engineering department of Chang Gung University and entered the naval academy after senior-high school.

"I have never doubted the correctness of my choice even though I have endured many hardships in the course of becoming a marine corps officer," Lee said.

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