U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Megan Appleby, left, a laboratory technician for the 4215th U.S. Army Hospital, draws blood from a Soldier during Warrior Exercise (WAREX) 78-13-01 in the Troop Medical Center at Fort McCoy, Wis., May 4, 2013. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Christopher Bigelow)
FORT MCCOY, Wis. – Taking care of the force is something Army Staff Sgt. Megan Appleby feels is her lifelong calling. The 30-year-old Army veteran of 11 years, serving both on active duty and in the reserve as a laboratory technician, has aspirations of being a medical doctor specializing as an obstetric gynecologist. The native of Lisbon, Iowa, is currently assigned to the 4215th U.S. Army Hospital command based in Richmond, Va.
Appleby says her passion for helping people started when she was very young.
“When I was little, the doctor that delivered my sisters and me was actually our doctor until we were 18 years old. Having that doctor who knew you from inside your mom's stomach and have that connection is really amazing,” said Appleby.
Joint Base Lewis-McChord was Appleby's first duty station from 2002-2006 and where she attended undergraduate school earning a bachelor's of science degree in microbiology. In mid-2006 she transferred to the Army Reserve and began attending battle assemblies with the 7229th Medical Support Unit. She then transferred to the 4215th USAH.
Appleby was deployed to Kuwait in 2003 and she says that being in an environment where there is a feeling of constant danger was scary, but knowing that around her every day are medical experts who could take care of her if she sustained any injuries, allowed her to focus on her job of caring for patients arriving for lifesaving care. According to Appleby, this realization is the driving force behind her pursuit of a medical career in the military.
Appleby is taking her medical school entrance exam and applying to the Uniformed Health Medical School to continue her service and military career. According