Her Story: Emily Perez

Second Lieutenant Emily Perez was the highest ranking Black female cadet in the history of West Point Academy. 

Emily Jazmin Tatum Perez was born on February 19, 1983 in Heidelberg, West Germany, into a U.S. military family. Perez attended Oxon Hill High School in Maryland, where she ranked among the top-10 students in her class. Upon graduating high school, she entered the United States Military Academy at West Point. At West Point she was an exemplary student and outstanding track athlete. Perez earned her way through the ranks to become Cadet Command Sergeant Major, making her the highest ranking Black female cadet in the history of West Point. 

Following graduation from West Point in 2005, she was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the 204th Support Battalion, 2nd Brigade, 4th Infantry Division of the United States Army. Perez was tragically killed in action on September 12th, 2006, while leading a convoy through Al Kifl, Iraq. She was the first Black female officer in US military history to die in combat.

Her military awards in clude the Bronze Star, Purple Hart, Army Commindation Medal, National Defence Service Medal, Iraq Campagin Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, and the Combat Action Badge. She posthumously received the NCAA Award of Valor in 2005.

We salute Emily Peres for her service and for making the ultimate sacrifice serving our country. She Made History,  we will remember her always. 


Emily Perez – Wikipedia

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Mother, Photographer, Wisecracker.... not necessarily in that order.

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