Knox Museum’s seventh annual Boots on the Ground event begins with a presentation by Mary Jennings (M.J.) Hegar, U.S. Air Force veteran, Air National Guard pilot and author of “Shoot Like A Girl: One Woman’s Dramatic Fight in Afghanistan and on the Home Front,” Saturday, May 27, at 11 a.m. The program will be held under the big tent at Montpelier, the big white house at the Route 131 turn to St. George.

Hegar served three tours in Afghanistan flying Combat Search and Rescue, as well as Medevac missions. On July 29, 2009, during her third tour to Afghanistan, she was shot down on a Medevac mission and sustained wounds, resulting in her being awarded the Purple Heart. Her actions on this mission saved the lives of her crew and patients, earning her the Distinguished Flying Cross with Valor Device.

In “Shoot Like A Girl,” Hegar shares her remarkable experience on the front lines both overseas and at home — from exchanging fire with the Taliban and saving her comrades in Afghanistan to fighting to open all combat positions to women in the military. Copies of “Shoot Like A Girl,” slated to be adapted for an Angelina Jolie-starring film, will be available for sale at the event, and will be signed by the author.

For a complete schedule of the free, rain or shine Boots on the Ground event, visit

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or