The lives of historic women were honored during the Women's History Month Observance and Luncheon on March 30 at Pershing Community Center.

Since 1986, March has been dedicated to celebrating the journey of women who paved the way for current and future generations, said 1st Lt. Victoria Lemmert, event narrator.

"America honors the celebrated women, pioneers and leaders in our history as well as those unsung women heroes of our daily lives," Lemmert said.

Kathy Aydt, U.S. Army Garrison Fort Leonard Wood deputy commander, spoke not only about recognizing the "brave" women of the past, but also about honoring the female leaders in the military and community.

"Sometimes we forget that we can look right here at home in our own community to find those trailblazing women who are fearlessly making accomplishments," Aydt said.

Ursula Lebioda served as the guest speaker for the program. Lebioda is a local businesswoman and volunteer for several area organizations.

Lebioda spoke about how her mother set an example of what a strong woman should look like and always pushed her to become the woman she is today.

"My mom immigrated to the United States at 17 because she wanted an opportunity in life," Lebioda said. "She was the woman in our house who pushed my father to make the decision to start a Family business. She worked hard to show what a woman is and how we should be."
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Lebioda

Lebioda said she also worked hard through college and came back to the St. Robert area to start her own business with her husband.

"We need to have a strong backbone and always take on a new challenge," Lebioda said.

She encouraged the women in the audience to teach children and young women to become strong leaders by example.

"I try to be the best role model I can be for my child by participating in a variety of things in the community. We need to work on our young women today and be a positive influence and role model to them," Lebioda said. "In the end, it's about the future and the young women of today."

The event also included performances by Waynesville High School students and instrumental music from the 399th Army Band.