Maintenance window scheduled to begin at February 14th 2200 est. until 0400 est. February 15th


Forgot Password?

    Defense Visual Information Distribution Service Logo

    Army Golden Knights celebrate Women’s History Month

    Army Golden Knights celebrate Women’s History Month

    Courtesy Photo | (Ret.) Sgt. 1st Class Karen Morrison performed an aerial demonstration for the...... read more read more



    Story by Twana Atkinson 

    U.S. Army Parachute Team, the Golden Knights

    From the battlefields of the American Revolutionary to now in our current conflicts all over the nation; women have been serving in the military in one form or another for more than 200 years.
    Two women from the U. S. Army Parachute Team reflect on their experiences and hopes for future women jumpers during this year’s Women’s History Month.
    The USAPT, also nicknamed the Golden Knights, began its mission in 1959 as the premiere skydiving demonstration team for the Army.
    Master Sgt. Jen Davidson (PU), a demonstrator on the Gold Demonstration team and a world-record skydiving champion, began her military career at 17 years old.
    “I joined the reserves (Army Reserves) because I wanted to have the college experience…after I graduated, I reclassed, deployed and then came to try out for the team,” said Davidson.
    Since the Army’s inception in 1776, although women were not always permitted to enlist in the U. S. Armed Forces, many still found ways to serve their nation.
    In 1948, President Harry S. Truman signed the Women’s Armed Service Integration Act into law so that women could officially serve.
    The Golden Knights had their first woman assigned to the unit in 1976. Since then, there has only been 26 active women jumpers assigned to the team; and Davidson is currently the only one.
    “I heard about skydiving and the team while I was in college, and knew then that was something that I wanted to do,” said Davidson.
    Davidson has been on the team since 2008, and has accomplished many prominent accomplishments in the skydiving community not only as a woman but as a highly skilled skydiver.
    She won several gold medals in world-level competitions and has broken several national and world records.
    “Master Sgt. Jennifer Davidson is truly one of a kind; breaking records for the Army and setting the bar higher for the next generation of female skydivers,” said Sgt. 1st Class Jesse Stahler, former competition team leader. “She won gold at the World Meet with the Golden Knights Female 4-way Formation Skydiving team in 2016. The next two seasons she would become the only female competitor on the 8-way FS team, and helped to achieve the programs fourth consecutive World Meet Gold in 2018. Master Sgt. Davidson is a true champion, and natural competitor through and through.”
    Karen Morrison, a former Golden Knight, explains the importance of the legacy of women on the team.
    “I remember one of my first demonstration shows that I performed and a little girl came up to me and said that she didn’t realize that women could skydive. That was very important to me to have that representation,” said Morrison,
    Morrison came to the team in 1992 and served as a demonstrator and competitor on the team for 14 years after fulfilling other Army obligations.
    Morrison recounts the time she and three other female Golden Knights conducted a demonstration during the annual Warriors on the Water fishing tournament at Jordan Lake in Raleigh, North Carolina.
    Warriors on the Water is an annual military appreciation bass fishing tournament that hosts more than 150 servicemembers. During the 2008 tournament, the former Golden Knights female style and accuracy team performed their aerial demonstration for the crowd and finished by landing on the back of four bass fishing boats.
    “This event was conducted in a crowd of mostly men! When we were done, we received so much great feedback,” Morrison recalled. “I remember this older lady coming up to me saying how amazed she was while watching the demonstration; and that women would’ve never been allowed to do that back in her day.”
    Women in the military have had to overcome decades of obstacles to get to where they are today; serving in greater numbers, in combat roles and in leadership positions all around the world.
    “I think it’s pretty cool to publicly be an inspiration to little girls and maybe change their mindset on what they are able to do,” said Davidson.
    If you have interest in joining the Army, please visit or visit your local recruiter for more information.



    Date Taken: 03.16.2022
    Date Posted: 03.16.2022 12:03
    Story ID: 416570
    Location: NC, US

    Web Views: 413
    Downloads: 0