JOINT BASE LANGLEY-EUSTIS, Va. --
Captain Haida StarEagle made history by becoming the first female Native American Intelligence Officer to join the United States Space Force in an intimate ceremony at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va., March 12, 2021.
"Captain StarEagle has the impressive combination of capability, superior intellect, drive and passion for serving," said Lt. Col. Michael Hollingsworth, joint collection training division lead, United States Special Operations Command. "Some people just have that 'it' factor, and I can tell you that the Space Force is gaining an absolutely phenomenal leader."
Approaching her 17th year of Air Force service, StarEagle currently serves as the 36th Intelligence Squadron flight commander of training, and was selected to transfer to the Space Force in December of 2020. She is currently awaiting her new duty title and station, and will remain in her current role until then. Her fellow Airmen say they'll be sad to see her go.
"She is the most motivated person I've met in my 12 years of service," said Master Sgt. Ryan Ritchey, 36th IS chief of training. "Her commitment to her Airmen is at a level I've never seen before. While we are losing an amazing Captain, the Space Force is gaining one and we're just so proud of her." Originally from Brooklyn, New York,
StarEagle is a member of the Matinecock Tribe. Her father, Chief Samuel Little Fox, is the Shaman for all 13 tribes on Long Island, and led the invocation during the induction ceremony.
"When I was born, during my naming ceremony, the Shaman came back from his vision quest and told my father that I was destined for the stars," said StarEagle. "My entire life has been focused toward the stars, and joining the Space Force puts me one step closer to following that dream."
Breaking down barriers in the United States' newest military force is important to StarEagle for several reasons. According to her, the New York National Congressional Library keeps a record of every member in the Matinecock Tribe written in real time, and she has worked to leave her mark.
"My father told me when I was younger that I must find my own way and figure out how to leave a legacy for our tribe," said StarEagle. "Joining the Space Force and continuing to serve is the best way to leave my mark within my tribe, create a legacy for my people, and make my father proud."
StarEagle concluded the ceremony with a quote that she lives by from her favorite show, Rick and Morty.
"To live is to risk it all," she said. "Otherwise, you're just an inert chunk of randomly assembled molecules drifting wherever the universe blows you. Don't waste your opportunity; don't waste your shot. Just believe in yourself, because everyone else already believes in you."