Duckworth inducted into Army hall of fame


POSTED: Thursday, March 18, 2010

Assistant Secretary of Veterans Affairs Tammy Duckworth was inducted yesterday into the U.S. Army Women's Foundation Hall of Fame.

A graduate of McKinley High School and the University of Hawaii, Duckworth was a helicopter pilot in Iraq when she lost both legs and partial use of one arm in a rocket-propelled grenade attack in 2004.

Duckworth was honored at the foundation's second annual Army Women in Transition Symposium and Hall of Fame luncheon in Washington, D.C. Also inducted was retired Air Force Brig. Gen. Wilma Vaught.

“;Through their extraordinary dedication, valor, patriotism and service, Assistant Secretary Duckworth and Brig. Gen. Vaught have paved the way as leaders and role models for the following generations of Army women,”; said retired Maj. Gen. Dee Ann McWilliams, foundation president.

With degrees from UH-Manoa and George Washington University, Duckworth was working toward her Ph.D. at Northern Illinois University when she was deployed to Iraq as a helicopter pilot in the Illinois Army National Guard. On Nov. 12, 2004, her Black Hawk helicopter came under fire and she was gravely wounded.

After recovering, Duckworth returned to Illinois and ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 2006 as a Democrat. After a stint as director of the Illinois Department of Veteran Affairs, she was appointed U.S. VA assistant secretary for public and intergovernmental affairs.