- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 17, 2017

KAHULULI, Hawaii (AP) - A Hawaii high school junior has become the first woman in state history to enlist and receive an Airborne infantry contract.

The Maui News reported (https://bit.ly/2qwIwyg ) Tuesday that Baldwin High School junior Cassidy Matschke will report to basic training and advanced individual training next year at Fort Benning, Georgia.

“I didn’t even know it and it didn’t prompt me to make a particular decision, but I think it’s great to be the first one because I’ve always tried to be an advocate for women to do anything they want,” Matschke said.

Matschke is the third female from Hawaii to enlist as an infantry soldier since frontline combat branches opened up to woman last year.

Airborne infantry soldiers are able to drop from airplanes into battle.

“I’m definitely nervous and scared, but what person in their right mind wouldn’t be,” Metschke said, adding that she would rather jump out of planes than sit at a desk.

“I really love the adrenaline rush and I think jumping out of a plane definitely constitutes as an adrenaline rush.”

Matschke scored above average on the Armed Forces Vocational Aptitude Battery test and passed physical exams before landing the Airborne infantry contract last week.

Recruiting Center Leader Sfc. Jesse Anthony Santos said Matschke’s determination stood out to him.

“What’s most gratifying for me is to see someone starting a career and knowing we were able to help them start a life of their own,” Santos said.

Matschke hopes to stay in the military for as long as possible, she said.

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Information from: The Maui News, https://www.mauinews.com

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