WACO, Texas (KWTX) From the early 1970's through the new millennium , one Central Texas woman served overseas during the Vietnam era, became a military police officer, and survived injuries from a helicopter explosion.
But after all of that only kindness and love shine through her face.
Adrienne Evans-Quickley broke down barriers through her military career.
She grew up in a military family so it's no surprise she wanted to be in the Army too.
"The military needed I thought, more women at that time," she said, "there were a lot of men out there but I could do what they could, I was born between two brothers," she said.
It was the early 1970s.
Evans-Quickley got into ROTC then the reserves, and before she knew it she was headed overseas during the Vietnam era to be part of a general's staff.
"I went with General Steele and some others back to retrieve some of the things in the Killing Fields and the areas in Cambodia," Evans-Quickley said,.
And she saw women in all kinds of roles.
"Women were not just nurses, they worked in hospitals and they also did, I knew some special ops women, I knew women who were piloting then, those who could repair things and fix things," she told us.
Earlier this year she got to see one of those special ops women, someone who protected her when her life was in danger.
"She remembered me, she remembered those who were with me, who did not come back with me, I remember her making sure I was safe and returned to my father," she said.
Evans-Quickley says other women were truck drivers, supply team members, and more, all while fighting social norms.
"It was not a popular thing for women to join the military," she said.
And while some men they served with didn't treat them as equals others made up for it..
"Those who thought we were a team and we need to stand together," she told us.
Evans-Quickley saw much death, but she made it home safely.
She remained in the Army and helped break down new barriers joining the military police.
She said, "they were like, you need to gain some weight. I said, I can do that!"
Evans-Quickley explains how she survived the helicopter attack in part two of our report next week.