[electronic translation] First commander of the Rio de Janeiro Fire Department, Rachel Lopes, 37, does not hide her joy. The prominent position was an old dream. The conquest came after five years of acting as co-pilot in the Air Operations Group (GOA). The work as commander began in December last year. The military has been involved in aeromedical care, which includes inter-hospital transportation of adult and neonatal patients, evacuation of accident victims, and transport of vital organs and tissues, when necessary.
“I feel like a hero when I have the opportunity to do my job.” Reducing time in emergency situations can save lives – said the pilot.
Since new, Rachel was attracted to the work of the Fire Department. It was the brother who informed her about the contest of fighters, the first to accept women.
“The profession of fireman is lovely. It is a very noble function, who never admired or dreamed as a child to be a firefighter? I was informed and encouraged by my brother about the contest that, for the first time, would admit the female entry to combat officer in the corporation. The desire to work with aviation came later. I joined the corporation at age 19, “recalled the major.
With two fellow aviators, soon Rachel began to think about the possibility of acting as a helicopter pilot. In the Fire Department he discovered that the desire could come true.
“At the Sete de Setembro parade, on Presidente Vargas Avenue, I was looking at the corporation’s red helicopter and thinking: I’ll still be up there. The commander of the Air Operations Group at the time told me that no woman had tried. Then I thought: This is going to be my challenge, “he said.
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