3rd woman graduates Ranger School

3rd woman graduates Ranger School

by Stephanie Pedersen and Chuck Williams
Columbus (Ga.) Ledger-Enquirer

COLUMBUS, Ga. (Tribune News Service) — Maj. Lisa Jaster became the third woman to graduate Ranger School Friday.

Jaster is the mother of two children, ages 7 and 3, and serves as an Army reservist. A 2000 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, she works as an engineer for Shell Oil in Houston.

Jaster joins Capt. Kristen Griest and 1st Lt. Shaye Haver, who earned their tabs on Aug. 21.

Jaster will have been in the school 180 days at graduation. If a soldier goes through all four phases without recycling — having to repeat a phase — the course takes 62 days. Less than 50 percent of the soldiers who start the school pass and only 30 percent of those go straight through without a recycle.

Jaster, like Haver and Griest, failed the first patrol phase at Camp Darby twice before being offered on May 29 a chance to start the course over from the beginning. All three women took what the Army termed a “Day 1 recycle,” and started over in late June. Two male soldiers were also given the same opportunity but declined. From that point, Griest and Haver went straight through without repeating a phase.

Jaster recycled in the north Georgia mountains and Florida swamps. In each phase, students are graded on their ability to lead small-unit patrols and are also graded by the their peers.

Jaster’s graduation comes as an Oklahoma congressman has asked the Secretary of the Army for Ranger School records from the classes that included the women. Rep, Steve Russell, R-Okla., one of two Army Ranger-qualified congressman, has questioned if the women were given special treatment. Russell’s office said on Friday it has not received the records it requested last month.

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