In a first for the United States Air Force Academy, a pair of twins have marked a new milestone — the Robillards have become the first family to graduate four sisters. This week, Amanda and Alicia Robillard followed in the footsteps of their sisters Nicole (Class of 2009) and Lauren (Class of 2007), all pictured above, from left to right. While their sisterly bond helped them throughout their training and education, they made clear that their time at the academy was spent forging their own individual paths.
According to Springs Military Life:
… [T]he Robillards distinguished themselves by the leadership role each sister attained in the Cadet Wing. Three of the four sisters served as cadet squadron commander, the highest-ranking cadet and leader of their approximately 110-person squadron, while Amanda served as 4th Group commander, leading 10 cadet squadrons and a 20-person staff.
The way the Robillards see it, this was not a matter of a family’s military legacy. In fact, neither of their parents were in the military; this was a personal choice made by Lauren Robillard, who merely inspired her sisters to follow a similar path:
“I went to college, and it just turned out that we all decided to go to the same college,” added Lauren, who is now helicopter pilot stationed at Fairchild AFB, Wash.
And while they all benefited from their shared experiences, they all insist that their careers at the academy were their own independent efforts.
“She wanted me to experience it on my own, which I came to appreciate, and a couple years down the road, when the twins decided to come, I did the same thing to them and told them the same two things Lauren told me,” [Nicole] said.
Those two things: don’t “freak out” upon hearing their first wake-up call and don’t hyperventilate during basic training’s “low crawl through the tunnels.” Good advice!
None of this stopped them from reaping the benefits of being legacies — freshman aren’t allowed to have cars on campus, but the Robillards had access to cars their first two years there. It was also a comfort to see familiar faces on campus, which any new college student would appreciate. And now that all four sisters have graduated, they say their bond is closer than that of most sisters, and that being able to have a conversation using military terminology gives them the upper hand in dinner conversations.
True, these young women are trying to come off as just another bunch of happy college grads — happy, history-making, country-protecting hero college grads. (Yeah, no biggie.)