LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - A Welsh native entered the military during the Cold War with a special duty. It was 1950 and at the age of 19, Joy Lee Snyder was sworn into the United States Marine Corps for Women. The Welsh native was assigned to a base in North Carolina as a top secret courier.
"I used to take secret and confidential documents to different officers on the base. I had to carry a briefcase and had to have it locked on my wrist."
Joy says she was taken seriously by most of those on the base. She was trained to defend herself and carried around a 45 caliber handgun.
"I had to take it apart, clean it and put it back together in less than 5 minutes. And I did. There was some smart guy come up and said, 'what would you do if I tried to take that away from you?' I said, 'why don't you try to find out?' He said No thank you."
Snider eventually become a corporal and served for about two years in the Marine Corps for Women.
"I think it was a wonderful experience. I enjoyed myself. I had never been away from home. That was the first time I was away. I had met all kinds of people. I really enjoyed it. I should have never gotten out."
Joy Snyder served a little over two years as a courier. She left to get married and raised 7 children.