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September 22, 2017

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ROC Army Rangers have their first female member

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Army Sergeant Hsieh Shu-chen (謝淑貞) has officially become the first female R.O.C Army Ranger after completing a rigorous 10-week training last week, local media reported yesterday.

The 26-year-old Hsieh of the 21st Artillery Command under the 6th Army Corps was awarded the Ranger badge on Aug. 1 after successfully undergoing 10-week training at an Army Special Forces training center in the mountainous Guguan area in Taichung City (台中谷關), the reports said.

The Army said Hsieh was one of the 26 that successfully completed the training. The course took in 54 candidates. She is the only female who completed the training.

According to the Chinese-language Apple Daily, there were another three female candidates joining Hsieh when the training session began.

But all three of them had washed out of the arduous training session within a week.

After officially becoming an Army Ranger, Hsieh expressed gratitude to her fellow candidates and instructors. It is with their encouragement that she was able to pass the test, Hsieh said.

There were times when she wanted to give up, but Hsieh said her mother always taught her not to give up halfway, a motto she keeps in mind.

According to the Army Special Forces training center, a potential ranger has to complete a four-stage, 10-week training before participating in a four-day final test to become a ranger.

Superhuman Training

During the 10 weeks, a candidate has to run 10,000 meters every morning plus complete another 1,000-meter obstacle course.

He or she has to swim another 1,000 meters every day at noon and wear 25 kilograms of equipment for a 10-kilometer walk. Each day concludes with muscular endurance training.

A potential Ranger also has to undergo all kinds of extraordinary tests, such as overcoming a fear of heights by jumping into water from a 22-meter-tall platform. A trainee needs to overcome high-altitude-related problems and be able to swim in cold water, it noted.

The final exam is a four-day mountain training at altitudes of 1,500 to 2,600 meters, with candidates resting less than five hours during the four-day span, the training center added.

Hsieh did not get any special treatment during the process because of her gender, the Army said.

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