As a panelist in our “Greatest Generation Meets the Next Generation: Women in Flight” event in Santa Monica on Nov 12th, Jacquelyne Nichols was asked what her toughest flight was and this is what she had to say:
"Every trip provides new experiences, but the same thrill of soaring through the air. It reminds me of why I wanted to become a pilot in the first place. I am living my dream whenever I step into a plane. I’m a 53 pilot by trade, but I recently converted to the UC35 Delta. This means that I fly colonels and generals to their meetings. Flying is not always easy. I recently had the hardest flight I’ve ever had in my life. I was called to fly a marine home to Oklahoma. He was terminally ill with pancreatic cancer. He had served two wars in Iraq and he was a combat engineer. It was my job to fly him home so that he could be with his family as he passed. I flew him home to die with his family. I get emotional every time I think about it. That was the most memorable flights that I have ever had."
Capt. Jacquelyne Nichols is an active duty United States Marine currently serving as the Assistant Operations Officer at Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron, Marine Corps Air Station Miramar. She recently transitioned to fixed wing aircraft making her the first female Marine Corps pilot to fly the UC-35D. Previously she completed two deployments as a CH-53E helicopter pilot assigned to HMH-466. She first deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom 14.1 where she earned the Air Medal with Strike/Flight numeral 3.