Dee Brasseur

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Dee Brasseur
Birth name Deanna Marie Brasseur
Born (1953-09-09) September 9, 1953 (age 63)
Pembroke, Ontario
Service/branch Canadian Forces
Years of service 1972-1994
Rank Major

Major (Retired) Deanna Marie (Dee) Brasseur, CM (born September 9, 1953) is a retired Canadian military officer. She is one of the first three women to earn her wings as a Canadian Forces (C.F.) military pilot for active duty[1] and also one of the first of two female CF-18 Hornet fighter pilots in the world.

Born in Pembroke, Ontario, a daughter to Lieutenant Colonel (Retired) Lionel C. (Lyn) Brasseur and Marie Olive (Aucoin), she joined the Canadian Forces in 1972 as an administrative clerk at a dental unit detachment in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The following year, she was accepted for commissioning under the Officer Candidate training program. She graduated as an Air Weapons Controller in 1974. In 1979, she was accepted for pilot training. She along with Nora Bottomley and Leah Mosher graduated from Canadian Forces Flight Training School in Portage la Prairie.[1] She received her wings in 1981. In 1988, she took fighter pilot training. In June 1989, following twelve months of training on Canadair CF-5 and McDonnell Douglas CF-18 Hornet jet fighter aircraft, Brasseur and Captain Jane Foster became the only two women in the world flying fighters in operational squadrons. Canada was the first country to allow women to fly in a combat role since the Second World War, when the Soviet Union used women pilots.[1] Brasseur was promoted to major in 1989 and posted to National Defence Headquarters (Canada) in Ottawa as director of flight safety, in March 1990.[1] She retired from the military in 1994 with 2,500 hours of jet flying.[2]

In 1998, a Maclean's cover story on sexual abuse in the Canadian Forces prompted Brasseur to go public with her own experiences. In the June 1 edition of the magazine, Brasseur claimed that throughout her 21-year career she faced unwanted sexual advances, was raped by her enlisted boyfriend and was coerced into having sex with her flight teacher.[3]

In 1998, she was made a Member of the Order of Canada. In 2007, she was inducted into the Women in Aviation, International Pioneer Hall of Fame.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d Pennington, Reina (2003). Amazons to Fighter Pilots: A Biographical Dictionary of Military Women. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press. p. 69. ISBN 0313327076. 
  2. ^ "About Me". Archived from the original on 2008-08-20. 
  3. ^ "More Rape in the Military". Maclean's Magazine. 
  4. ^ "2007 Pioneer Hall of Fame". Women In Aviation, International. Archived from the original on 2009-10-10. 

External links[edit]

Jenn Gearey (February 16, 2007). "Canadian Woman Being Inducted Into The Women in Aviation, International Pioneer Hall of Fame". Department of National Defence. Archived from the original on December 16, 2012.