College student unknowingly becomes first female enlisted infantryman in Iowa


Taylor Patterson of the Iowa National Guard is a tough servicewoman who made military history. The animal science student enlisted in the Army National Guard to serve her country.

“I chose infantry just to show people I could do what they thought I couldn’t do,” she said.

Little did she know that her decision to enlist as an infantryman was a first for a woman in Iowa.

“I felt like I was third or fourth. I was like, ‘Okay, cool. It’s done. There’s going to be some help along the way,'” he said. she noted.

“Then I came to my unit, and they were like, ‘You’re the first in the state of Iowa.’ I was shocked. I really thought there were others.”

During her 22 weeks of infantry training at Fort Benning in Georgia, Patterson said some of her male counterparts did not accept women in the military.

“There were a lot of guys we were training with who didn’t think we should be there. They didn’t think we were capable.”

Patterson is not the first in her family to choose military service. “My great-grandfather served in World War II. My grandfather was in Vietnam, and my enlistment led to my little brother joining the National Guard,” she said.

PFC Patterson feels responsible for being the first female 11-Bravo in the Iowa National Guard.

“I have to carry this torch now, I feel like. I’m really excited to do it and prove that women are just as capable as men.”

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