FORT KNOX, Ky. -- As the all-female honor guard began to fold the American Flag, it was abundantly clear that the folding of the flag during this ceremony had a very distinct meaning.

Two of the three worked meticulously, making methodical and precise movements as they executed each fold, inspecting the flag as they continued.

As Sgt. 1st Class Dineshia Baines, the Noncommissioned-Officer in Charge of the Honor Guard, narrated each of the 13 folds, she revealed significant points in American and Army history. Points of history that have had an enduring impact on women's equality.

"The First Fold is made in honor of Deborah Samson Gannett, who disguised herself as a man and enlisted in the military under the name of her deceased brother so that she could serve her country in 1782," said Baines.

The ceremony was a part of the Women's Equality Day observance, hosted by the 4th Cavalry Multi-Functional Training Brigade commander, Col. James Turner, August 24, at the Saber and Quill, here. The observance gave members of the Fort Knox community the opportunity to celebrate the passing of the 19th amendment and 98 years of women's suffrage.

"The amendment was first introduced in 1878. In 1971, U.S. Congress designated August 26th as Women's Equality Day," Turner said. "Today, we reflect on the struggles women have faced in gaining the same rights and privileges as their male counterparts, while also celebrating the accomplishments they've made over time through the continual fight for equality."

During the ceremony, Turner acknowledged that even though they were celebrating Women's Equality Day, America and the Army still has progress to make in true women's equality. For the Army, one of those strides was made earlier this year.

"As an Army, we continue to make great strides, and as of this spring {Lt. Gen. James McConville}, the Vice Chief of Staff of the Army briefed that every active duty brigade combat team, down to the battalion level had women assigned to them," said Turner.

"To date, ten women have graduated from Ranger school," said Turner. "Yet given these milestones that at one time seemed impenetrable to women, there is still much to be done as we continue to move forward and get better both as a nation and as an Army."

Turner spoke highly of the guest speaker for the observance, Brig. Gen. Twanda Young, the deputy commanding general of U.S. Army Human Resources Command, as he introduced her to the audience.

"[Our] guest speaker is no stranger to the struggles that women have faced over time," said Turner. "She is an example of the greatness that we can achieve when we have equal treatment for all.

"In getting to know more about Brig. Gen. Young, I have found that she faced many obstacles and has broken many glass ceilings in her lifetime."

Although small in stature, standing only 4 feet 11 inches, Young spoke in a manner that demanded a response. After opening her speech with a two-minute video, Young challenged the audience to not tolerate injustice towards anyone.

"When we do not make a choice to stand when we see injustice happening, regardless of what that is, and we don't make a stand, we've made our decision," said Young. "My mission today is to motivate you and inspire you to lead from whatever realm of influence you have toward making our Army the best it can be."

"I challenge you to take your head out of the sand and make the decision to stand on the right side of right or wrong."

As Young continued her speech she gave an example of Harry T. Burn, someone who had made the decision to stand on the right side of right and wrong. Someone whose choice to stand against injustice would forever change the course of American history.

"I am excited for someone named Harry T. Burn," said Young. "I am so thankful to that man because he listened to his mama."

"His mother wrote him a note and the catching point was 'Be a good boy, and help Miss Kat put the rat in ratification.' That day when he voted, he voted so quickly by agreeing to give the right to vote to women, that is surprised even the other constituents that were there."

Young went on to explain the she was no stranger to injustice. She had also faced inequality in her lifetime.

"My battalion commander came to the base of our rappel tower," said Young. "After I was done reporting to him, and I thought I had done quite well giving him my run down, he looked at me and he said that I had no right and that there was no place for women to be in the Army, and that he was going to do everything that he could to ensure that I did not make it past first lieutenant."

"That night I called my mom and I cried big snot tears," said Young. "And she asked me 'What is your name?' and I said 'Williamson Mama.'"

"Then she said 'Then act like one, because right now you're giving power to someone who doesn't have power over you.'"

"Long story short, as I stood there as a brand new second lieutenant and looked him in his eyes, I said to him 'Sir, I will be here when you retire.'"

Young's experience with inequality early in her career did not become an obstacle that deterred her progression through the ranks. Instead, it became a foundational element of the character and pride she leads with today.

She again challenged the audience this time to persevere. To face those moments when they may experience inequality and injustice with a hope that they can overcome them.

"Whatever your base of the rappel tower moment has been, or if you find yourself there now, know that there is light at the end of the tunnel," said Young. "Nothing is going to come to you easy. And anything worth having, there's some sacrifice that's going to have to be made to get it."

As she began to conclude her speech, Young left the women in the audience with one last piece of encouragement. She invited the women to recite one simple sentence. One sentence to embody the essence of Women's Equality Day. "Empowered women empower women."

"The Thirteenth and Final Fold, or when the flag is completely folded, the stars are uppermost reminding us of our nation's motto, "In God we trust,'" said Gaines, as the honor guard concluded the flag folding ceremony during the observance.

"After the flag is completely folded and tucked in, it takes on the appearance of a cocked hat, ever reminding us of the women who served with distinction and commitment, and who were followed by their comrades in the armed forces of the United States, preserving for us the rights, privileges and freedoms we enjoy today."