Nursing Graduate Assisted in Rescue of Private Jessica Lynch

Susan Hodges, RN, a December 2002 graduate of the joint baccalaureate nursing program of Saint Mary's College of California and the Samuel Merritt College School of Nursing, assisted with the rescue of POW Jessica Lynch during the recent U.S. led-Coalition's conflict with Iraq.

When Army Private Lynch was transported on a 7 ½ hour flight from Kuwait to Germany, Technical Sgt. Hodges was among the Air Force medical group treating the wounded soldier. "We were keeping her very comfortable. But she did open her eyes and she did look at us and the crew," said Hodges during an (April 3) interview with ABC-TV's Diane Sawyer on Good Morning America. "I think, I believe she knew she was leaving [Iraq] and going over here [Germany]."

Hodges' 349th Aero Medical Squadron, based out of Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, has been deployed in the Middle East since March. She is a resident of Sacramento.

Major Debra Muhl of San Francisco, who graduated from the Saint Mary's-Samuel Merritt program in 1983, is a member of that same squadron.

The joint nursing program of Saint Mary's and Samuel Merritt has been in operation for about 25 years, with students doing coursework both in Moraga (Saint Mary's) and in Oakland (Samuel Merritt).