War on Terrorism

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Face of Defense: Former Teacher Answers Call to Serve

By Army Staff Sgt. Alex Licea
Special to American Forces Press Service

March 17, 2009 - Army Spc. Eileen Flynn seemed like an unlikely recruit for the military – on paper, at least. Flynn moved to the United States from her native Sydney, Australia, when she was 23. She was a teacher with bachelor's degrees in social science and early childhood education, and she's married to a U.S. Marine master sergeant.

Flynn was living the military lifestyle as a spouse, and educating children around the world as she traveled with her husband. But, for Flynn, being a spouse of a servicemember wasn't enough. She said she was always curious about life in uniform.

"I really wanted to see and experience what my husband used to tell me about," she said. "So I decided to join the Army, go to airborne school, become a paratrooper and serve my country."

She enlisted in the Army in June 2007 and became an American citizen in August 2008. She resides in Newbern, N.C., but is stationed with Multinational Division Baghdad here as an operations assistant assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division's Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team.

Flynn said her favorite part about being a paratrooper is the thrill of jumping out of an airplane.

"It's a rush, and if I could jump every day I would," she said.

During her spare time in Iraq, Flynn enjoys going to the gym, and she is pursuing a bachelor's degree in liberal arts.

(Army Staff Sgt. Alex Licea serves in Multinational Division Baghdad with the 82nd Airborne Division's 3rd Brigade Combat Team.)

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