Monarch Landing’s Only Female Veteran ResidentNovember 10, 2022
When she was in 8 th grade, after seeing a woman Marine in dress blues, she decided she wanted to be a Marine. Entering in 1971, she retired from the U.S. Marine Corps 20 years later.
Jeanette, a resident of Monarch Landing in Naperville, is the only female veteran living at the senior living community. She has been invited to participate in the Veteran’s Day event at
Monarch Landing this week.
“My military specialty was the Marine Corps Exchange or the PX. My responsibilities included stocking and restocking merchandise, supervising employees, and administration of the stores,” she said. One of her favorite responsibilities one year, was to attend a toy convention to purchase items for Christmas shoppers on the base. Over her career, she was stationed in Parris Island, South Carolina; Arlington, Virginia; Camp Pendleton, California; Twenty-Nine Palms,
California; Camp LeJeune, North Carolina, stateside, and Panama, and Iwakuni, Japan overseas.
She also ran a PX for cold weather training in Norway.
Jeanette was in the first class of women in the Marines who received orders to Drill Instructor School. “What a great distinction it was and a milestone for women Marines,” said Jeanette. She served as a Drill Instructor at Parris Island.
“My last year with the Marines was at the beginning of the Gulf War. I spent that time in the warehouse receiving items that came in on the train…necessities. We’d unpack and repack to send to the troops in the Gulf War,” she said, adding that she received the Navy Unit Commendation Medal for this, the recognition of which she is most proud. Additionally,
Jeanette said she earned a Rifle Marksmanship and a Pistol Sharpshooter Badge, a Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, a Good Conduct Medal W/5 Stars, and a National Defense Service Medal W/1 Star.
During her service, Jeanette was promoted through the ranks, serving as a Private, Private First Class, Lance Corporal, Sergeant, Staff Sergeant and retiring as a Gunnery Sergeant.
Jeanette, who saw much of the world through her service, also provided her twin sister Jackie Plourde with the opportunity to do so. “Jeanette joined the Marines, and I saw the world. I went to see her, wherever she was stationed,” said Jackie, who is also a resident of Monarch Landing.
“According to the dictionary, a patriot is someone who is willing to serve in the armed services. In the beginning, this didn’t occur to me as the reason to join. Being in the Marines was just something I always wanted to do. I worked hard to reach that goal,” Jeanette said. “The reason for making it my career was that I enjoyed meeting new people and helping
them. I had some great experiences and friendships that I will always cherish. According to the definition, after making it my career, you could say, I was a patriot.”