Son is inspired by his veteran mom to join the military

Published: Nov. 11, 2020 at 9:38 PM CST
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Being in the military is a tough job, but how about being pregnant while serving your country.

We spoke with a North Dakota veteran who was a member of the armed forces and an expectant mother.

Billie Jo Lorius served in the military for almost 22 years and retired as a Sergeant First Class for the Army National Guard.

She said fighting for our country was one of the best decisions she’s ever made.

The North Dakota Heritage Center and State Museum have many military uniforms on display in their Inspiration Gallery, covering clothing from yesterday and today.

While many of them show the history of North Dakotans in the Armed Forces, one highlight’s a key turning point for women in the military, the maternity uniform.

“At first I felt weird, but then I just, you know they’re really comfortable and I really got used to it, and you know I mean, I was happy to be pregnant and still be able to serve my country,” said Lorius, North Dakota National Guard.

Pregnant with a baby boy, her duties in Public Affairs Detachment and Lewis and Clark Youth Rendezvous didn’t change but her physical responsibilities did.

“You know you don’t have to go running or you don’t have to do push-ups and sit-ups when you’re nine months pregnant, or eight months pregnant. So that part, I was exempted from,” said Lorius.

Now a sophomore in high school, Ayden Frohlich is looking to follow in his mother’s footsteps.

“I wanted to be a police officer. So, I could help people locally, but in the military, you can help people around the world. So, it’s more of like a broader spectrum of me being able to help other people,” said Frohlich.

Frohlich said he has an interest in the Navy and Air Force, and he plans to apply to all the military academies, his senior year of high school.

The State Historical Society of North Dakota has collected more than 150 full or partial uniforms from the last 100 years.

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