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    Women’s Equality Day: 2nd ABCT celebrates ‘trail blazers’ during observance ceremony

    Women’s Equality Day: 2nd ABCT celebrates ‘trail blazers’ during observance ceremony

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Michael West | Sgt. Maj. Johnnie Bryant-Johnson speaks during a Women’s Equality Day observance...... read more read more

    FORT BLISS, TX, UNITED STATES

    08.21.2019

    Story by Sgt. Michael West 

    2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division

    Empowerment reigned at the Centennial Banquet and Conference Center as a multitude of Soldiers, civilians, and German military forces, gathered for an observance ceremony for Women’s Equality Day Aug. 21.

    The ceremony host, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, provided a reverent environment, with all in attendance put at ease as the soothing jazz melodies from musicians filled the banquet hall.

    “Today, the observance of Women’s Equality Day not only commemorates the passage of the 19th Amendment, but also calls attention to women’s continuing efforts toward full equality – equality in pay, equality in work and equality in representation,” said Col. Chad C. Chalfont, commander for 2nd ABCT, 1st AD, in his opening remarks. “We can clearly see the results of the fight for equality in every part of our society, as women sit at our nation’s highest court, run for our highest political offices, and serve as leaders in our boardrooms, laboratories, schools, communities, government, and armed forces.”

    The ceremony’s narrator, Spc. Kayla Thomas, a combat engineer with 2nd ABCT, 1st AD, presented the audience with historical information regarded during the day of observance. The event also included individual dedications to women’s equality by three Pebble Hills High School students.

    “Women’s equality is my right and my freedom,” said student Tatiana Powell. “Women are changing the world today. Still beating records in sports. Still saving innocent people from going to jail. Still teaching students to be great.”
    “For me,” another student said. “Equality is working just as hard if not harder to accomplish what I want. I know I have the same opportunities as a man and I can accomplish anything a man can.”

    The 2nd ABCT commander welcomed guest speaker Sgt. Maj. Johnnie Bryant-Johnson, who opened her speech with a powerful attention getter.

    “I come to you as one –one daughter, sister, woman, wife, mother and American Soldier – but, I stand before you as one of the 219,000 female service members serving our nation,” said Bryant-Johnson.

    She talked about how she enlisted in the Army in 1987; years before a third of the audience were born, which sparked laughter from the audience. She went on to talk about her experiences with voting.

    “I voted because I was expected to,” she exclaimed. “ I didn’t vote with the reverence that should have accompanied the act itself. I took for granted my ability to have my voice heard.”

    She acknowledged the ‘trailblazers’ who created opportunities she had taken for granted, and she looked at all the faces in the audience and spoke words of fulfillment.

    “I see the anticipation and expectation of those who will continue to blaze trails in the pursuit of equality – not only in the military, but in America.”

    Women’s Equality Day is celebrated Aug. 26 in the United States to commemorate when the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was signed in 1920, prohibiting states and the federal government from denying the right to vote to citizens on the basis of sex.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 08.21.2019
    Date Posted: 11.07.2019 14:49
    Story ID: 350956
    Location: FORT BLISS, TX, US 
    Hometown: FORT BLISS, TX, US

    Web Views: 15
    Downloads: 0

    PUBLIC DOMAIN