News: Soldiers celebrate Women's History Month through song, dance
Story by Spc. Shantelle Campbell
TIKRIT, Iraq — Service members and civilians throughout Contingency Operating Base Speicher gathered inside the North Morale, Welfare and Recreation Center, March 27, to celebrate some of the most inspiring and influential women of the past and present.
The Women's History Month Program and Talent Show, which was hosted by the 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division out of Fort Riley, Kan., was an event filled with impressive song and dance performances.
Lt. Col. Nora R. Marcos, the commander of the 3rd Infantry Division Special Troops Battalion out of Fort Stewart, Ga., was the guest speaker at the event and said that she considers these types of programs to be important because it gives Soldiers the opportunity to "reflect on the accomplishment of women."
"As a Soldier, a leader and a mother of a daughter, it's important to me for women to know that there's nothing that they can't achieve," she said. "There have been some phenomenal women who have gone before us, but there's more that can be done and needs to be done."
"Even though we're deployed, we still keep that focus on recognizing women and recognizing all of the ethnic minorities that we celebrate throughout the year."
During the talent show, the women in the audience were wooed by the tantalizing voices of, among others, The Speicher Temptations and Spc. Gaktong Dapwatda, a supply specialist with Forward Support Company, 1st Engineer Battalion, who sang an African song about finding peace, love and joy.
"Women bring the balance that we experience in the world right now, and the peace that we enjoy," said the Minneapolis, Minn., native. "The emotional aspect and the emotional part of our lives — they are the ones who help us connect with that. So, right now we are basically celebrating them, we're basically appreciating them and showing them how important they are to us."
The audience also enjoyed the cultural variety of the talent show. East Brunswick, N.J., native 1st Lt. Puja Ghosh, a medical platoon leader with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 209th Aviation Support Battalion, celebrated women and her culture by performing a dance from India.
"Growing up in the Indian culture in New Jersey, [dancing] was something that I enjoyed very much," she said.
To conclude the event, Sgt. 1st Class Sherry Williams, the equal opportunity advisor for 4th IBCT thanked everyone for participating and attending, and for taking a step toward "writing women back into history."
"Women's History Month is important; not only as a celebration, but as Lt. Col Marcos said, very little history is actually about women even though we make up fifty percent of the population," said 1st Lt. Ghosh. "[We're] making sure that we are written back into history [and ensuring] that the events and the impact that we had on the past, is remembered so that it [may] also influence the future."