The Cheerleader Who Came in from the Cold

An Eagles cheerleader is now an army intelligence officer? This can’t be true, can it? That sounds like the plot of a ridiculous movie starring Megan Fox or Jessica Alba.

But this is no joke. This is real.

As a Philadelphia Eagles cheerleader, Rachel Washburn toted pom-poms. As an Army intelligence officer with a special ops combat unit in Afghanistan, she carried an assault rifle and pistol. She was a pioneer on a special mission to relate to local women in ways that would be culturally inappropriate for male troops — including helping deliver an Afghan baby in a snowstorm.

Washburn, 25, who recently returned from her second tour in Afghanistan, will be honored Sunday night as a “Hometown Hero” by the Eagles at their home game against the Chicago Bears.

And she’s army through and through.

She didn’t join the Army on a whim. During her three seasons with the Eagles, Washburn was an Army ROTC student and history major at Drexel University in Philadelphia. Her father was an Army helicopter pilot and an Air Force fighter pilot. She figures she moved 17 or 18 times growing up, but she calls Philadelphia home even though she just attended college there.

Rachel is a beautiful, but she’s much more than that. Sounds like a really amazing lady. Kudos to her for choosing such an interesting career path.

Here’s Rachel from the good ol’ days.

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2 Responses to The Cheerleader Who Came in from the Cold

  1. Pingback: Iggles Blitz » Blog Archive » Laser Focus

  2. JJ_CAKE says:

    Very cool story Tommy, thanks for sharing it with us. It’s inspiring to learn that a young woman and part time eagle’s cheerleader has aspired towards such an interesting career that enabled her to help women in Afghanistan.

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