Since 1918, during WWI, women have been answering the call to serve proudly in the United States Marines.  And the Corps has made some significant progress with women, but they are still waking up to the fact that women can do many more things.  The name isn't important.  Marine will do.  The rank?  Private to Lieutenant General.  It is these three stars that tell the story of women who served in the Marine Corps.  You see, we are carrrying rifles in combat zones, receiving commands and giving then, flying aircraft or maintaining them, saluting a General or becoming one.  We may be in the air, on land, or sea and not at home.

For the rest of the story . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Google  We Are Marines at

 *(Updated--You may now read most of the book online.  Stops at Page 263.  The book actually ends at Page 377.)


Above picture shows Second Lts Mary Cleland Fordney (left) and Eugenia Dickson Lejeune congratulate one another in Novemeber 1943 upon graduating the seventh Officer Candiates Class at Camp Lejeune, New River, N.C., the MCWR's training base. After the completion of the 1st training facility for Women Marine Reserves, the fourth class of women trainees was moved from Mount Holyoke College in North Hampton, MA to the NC base on 5 July 1943 followed by the enlisted women trainees from Hunter College in NY.  The size of the classes from both Mount Holyoke(210 graduated) and Hunter College (3200 graduated) dictated the move of women recruits to Camp Lejeune. There were approximately 18,000 women trained at Camp Lejeune.  Eugenia (1904-1971) was the daughter of LtGen John A. Lejeune, the 13th Commandant of the USMC, and Mary Fordney was the granddaughter of MajGen Ben H. Fuller, 15th CMC. Eugenia entered work as an employee of the Norfolk Public Library, completed courses at the Columbia University Library School, and passed an examination to become a certified librarian in the State of Virginia.  Following in her late father's tradition, she entered the USMCWR as a Private.  Eugenia achieved the rank of Major.  She was the officer-in-charge of the record section and military reference library at Quantico where Maj. Lejeune was put in charge of locating and classifying documents relating to the history of amphibious warfare.   She was placed on an inactive duty status in 1946 in the reserves, but remained at the Marine Corps School as librarian-archivist in a civilian capacity until 1949.  She, then, became a librarian at the Armed Forces Staff College Library.  Next, MIss Lejeune became the archivist-librarian at the Marshall Foundation library in 1957 working there until 1970.  Ms. Lejeune played a major role in helping Dr. Forrest C. Pogue, Director, in researching and organizing records pertinent to General George C. Marshall's biography. Miss Lejeune replied to a question, "I have had people say to me, "Don't you find archival work boring?" Far from it! Even dust laden papers from an attic, with no organization donated hesitatingly by the living members of the family pose a challenge. When one starts sorting these papers, an individual emerges. You find out who he was, what he did, and what his interests were--all a part of living history."

Lt. Gen. Frances Wilson, highest ranking senior officer, stated, "Today, (women) raise their hand to serve-not to free a man to fight-but to serve beside them." 

Past CMC General Michael W. Hagee said, "On my recent tour of the Central Command area of responsibility where I visited forward deployed Marines in Bahrain, Kuwait and Afghanistan, there were women Marines at every single location and no one noticed because they were Marines.  They were qualified.  They were doing their jobs and they were Marines."


Opha Mae Johnson 1st WWI Marine Reserve (F) "Marinette" 

Col. Ruth Streeter, 1st Director of  WMR christening the "Lady Leatherneck" 

Col. Adele Hodges, the 1st female, 1st African Amercian, and 1st Colonel to command Camp Lejeune's six-decade history. Col. Hodges is now Director of Readiness for the IG.

(L) Female Marines displaying uniforms 

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