The Cincinnati Reds have chosen five women to represent the armed forces for Opening Day on March 29. Three women with Southeastern ties will be honored to be representing the Marines, Air Force and Navy.
PG Gentrup and Ron Spurlock have worked with the Reds for a few years making it possible for people to be Hometown Heroes, Purple Heart recipients on the field, World War II veterans recognized on VE Day and VJ Day, Color Guards presenting the colors at the start of the game, honoring Lauren Hill on her day each year and throwing out the first pitch at a game.
Going on the field on Opening Day will be Angela Slayback Erfman, representing the United States Marine Corps; Julie Sweeney Cassini, representing the United States Navy and Denise Schafer Singler, representing the United States Air Force. They will be presented to the crowd before the start of the game on the field for Women In The Military Appreciation Day.
Master Sergeant (E-7) Denise Schafer Singler
Denise served in the U.S. Air Force from 1974-1996 after graduating from West Monona High School in Onawa, Iowa.
Her major duties were in administration and information management and she served as a Defense Courier delivering Top Secret and classified material around the globe.
After her initial training she was stationed at Beale Air Force Base in California and served two tours of duty at Ramstein AFB, Germany.
She served at Offutt AFB in Nebraska for two tours and at Kunsan AFB, Korea. She also served in support positions in Spain, Greece, Crete, Norway and Iceland. She enjoyed seeing the world.
Denise was awarded the National Defense Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal and the Air Force Good Conduct Medal.
Denise today is the Administrative Assistant at the Rising Sun Police Department. She and husband, Kevin, enjoy spending time with their 10 grandchildren. Denise volunteers at the Ohio Co. Public Library too. They reside in Rising Sun, Indiana. Denise considers it a great honor to have served our great nation.
Corporal Angela Slayback Erfman
Angela joined the Marine Corps after graduating from South Dearborn High School in 1993. Her parents are Sally McLaughlin and the late Mike Slayback. She served on active duty from 1994-98 and then served in the Reserves from 1998-2000 to fulfill her obligation. She performed personnel and general administrative duties utilizing manual and automated information systems to prepare documents, maintain personnel records and input audit and retrieve pay and personnel information. This included preparation of correspondence maintenance and of files and archives.
She was awarded the National Defense Medal, Good Conduct Medal, Meritorious award including a Certificate of Appreciation and Letter of Appreciation as well as the Rifle Sharpshooter Badge.
Angela lives in Fischers, IN with her husband, Eric and three children, Ashley, Ethan and Rylan where she works as a Marketing Controller. She graduated from Thomas More College after her duty in the Marines.
Seaman Julie Cassini
Julie served in the United States Navy from 1994 until 1996. She attended boot camp at Orlando, Florida, then served aboard the USS Holland AS-32 out of Naval Air Station Lemoore in California. Cassini also served in Guam at Apra Harbor, where her primary duty was working in the legal department. Julie lives in Aurora with her husband Mike and their three children: Ben, Sam, and Zac.