Miyoko Hikiji served as an enlisted soldier in the Army and Iowa Army National Guard for nearly a decade, spending 400 days deployed for Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003—2004. Her job duties included truck driver, unit correspondent and administrative sergeant. During the deployment she spent over 70 days running supply convoy, security and raid missions throughout the northwest quadrant of Iraq. Simultaneously, Miyoko wrote a company newsletter, contributed to her support squadron’s newsletter, wrote articles for a hometown newspaper and updates for the unit’s family support group in Iowa. Upon her return from Iraq, Miyoko wrote her company’s deployment history for the archives at the Gold Star Museum on Camp Dodge — the Iowa Army and Air National Guard State Headquarters.
Miyoko’s military awards include the Army Commendation Medal (2), Army Achievement Medal (2), Army Good Conduct Medal, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal (2), Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with M Device, Army Service Ribbon and Iowa Humanitarian Service Medal. Her transportation company received the second highest unit decoration—the Valorous Unit Award—for extraordinary heroism.
Miyoko earned her degree in journalism from Iowa State University in 2004. She is represented by Peak Modeling Agency and has been featured in print advertising and commercials, regionally and internationally. Miyoko, her husband Tom, and two daughters reside in Iowa.
All I Could Be: My Story as a Woman Warrior in Iraq
This story exposes the comradeship, intimacy, cowardice and humor of soldiers living in physical and emotional grit.