JUMPING was just part of the job for Julie Grose in the army that she kind of fell into.
Ms Grose, then Private O’Brien, had been in the orderly room when she heard about a parachuting course and remarked it sounded interesting. The next week, she became the first female parachute rigger in the Australian Army. That was in 1974.
Now her action photo is on an Australian Post stamp.
“I didn’t realise women hadn’t done it before,” Ms Grose said. “ I suppose, in the 70s, I thought women could do whatever they wanted anyway. There is so much more scope for what women can do in the army now.”
The stamp commemorates 50 years of the Australian Army parachute riggers. Females now make up 11 per cent of Australian parachute riggers.
Ms Grose, a Ballarat Health Services aged care nurse, is not so keen on sky-diving anymore. Back then, she would complete static line and free-fall.
“It’s really hard to describe the feeling of jumping,” Ms Grose said.
“It was always a relief when you landed.”
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