Sue Sarafian Jehl was a decorated officer in the Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps (WAAC) (later known as Women’s Army Corps, or WAC) of the United States Army. During World War II she was one of three secretaries to Supreme Allied Commander Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Jehl was born in Massachusetts in 1917 to Armenian immigrant parents from Kharpert in the Ottoman Empire. She grew up in Detroit, Michigan, and was a member of her Armenian Youth Federation chapter.
Claim to fame
She was a high-profile member of the WAAC and part of an effort by General Eisenhower to prove women’s ability to serve in the military. She was working with Eisenhower during significant wartime events, including the defeat of Italy and the invasion of Normandy. She later went on to record Eisenhower’s memoirs.
Her role in the war was instrumental in women eventually being more freely accepted into the military.
What she said
“[The WAAC] paved the way for women in the military.”
What others said
“Few people in the American military had as much insight into Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower’s thoughts and moods during World War II as Sue Sarafian Jehl.” – Orlando Sentinel