After graduating from Radford University with a Bachelor of Science in Biology in 1996, Leigh Ramsey sought another challenge that would take her to see the world—the Air Force. She loved medicine and science and gravitated toward becoming a medic, which she did with training at Sheppard Air Force Base in Texas. She then worked at a medical clinic at Travis Air for Base in Fairfield and a hospital at Vandenberg Air Force Base in Santa Barbara, CA.
There, she ran the ambulance crews for the missile launcher, and even had to go down missile shafts to bring medical care to the missileers.
Later, in the Air National Guard, she attended to a fighter pilot unit in Virginia. All of this resulted in a great deal of experience, but also gave Ramsey some much-needed direction in life.
“I also wanted to serve a greater cause,” she said, which is something she imparts to her children now.
“You have to pay it forward, you have to pull your own weight,” she says to them.
This was the takeaway from being in the service, something she greatly misses. She loved the cohesiveness of working closely “in situations that aren’t the daily norm.”
“It made me realize that you can find a family wherever you are,” Ramsey said.
She said her time in the service made her realize that she could do what she put her mind to, and that the camaraderie gave her the strength to do that. “You figure out that those people have your back,” she said.
Ramsey was on active duty from 1997 to 2002, and then in the Air Force National Guard until 2005. She then went on to earn her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Radford University in 2004 and her Masters of Science in Nursing from Liberty University in 2011.
Ramsey is a Clinical Nurse Specialist-Board Certified and a Certified Diabetes Educator, and since her military service, has worked as an emergency department nurse and in the community health setting. She is currently an Assistant Professor in the Jefferson College of Health Sciences Nursing department.
Click here to return to the Veterans & Active Military Member Resources page.