Determined to Serve Her Country
by Terry Allen
March 21, 2016
Prycilla Day was packing her truck Monday morning for the long drive to Florida where she hoped to enlist in a branch of the U.S. military. Her father served in the navy and her mother served in the army.
We spoke to Prycilla in Pinedale with the American flag at Rendezvous Pointe waving in the background and the sun shining through the Crow Sun Dance ceremonial lodge tipi poles on the hill at the Mountain Man Museum.
The solidly built woman from Alaska is a weight lifter but has been having a hard time enlisting. "I am a Klinkit and Athasbaskan Native American," she said. "I have a religious tattoo of a feather behind my right ear. Where I come from, the tattoo means I am a warrior. It is part of my ethnic and religious identity."
So far, Prycilla has tried to enlist in six states. Her journey has taken her to Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Arizona, Washington and Colorado, but she has been rejected by recruiters. "They tell me I either have to remove the tattoo or get a waiver," she said. "Unfortunately, a General has to sign the waiver and none of the recruiters will fill out the paper work."
"I hear they are taking infantry recruits in Florida, so thatís where Iím headed as fast as I can get there," she said.
With that, the young woman gave the photographer a hug, followed by one from her mother. "Thanks so much for being interested in my story," she said. "It is my purpose in life to serve my country," she said. "I hope to train as a Special Operations Combat Medic."
Photo by Terry Allen. For comments or corrections: firstname.lastname@example.org