Happy Birthday Queen Elizabeth
As you may have heard, she is 90 today, but she has also served at least 71 years continuously in the military.
Per the IWM:
During the Second World War, King George VI was reluctant to let his daughter – and heir – join any of the organisations that women could serve in during the war. However, in February 1945, Princess Elizabeth was allowed to join the Auxiliary Territorial Service (ATS). Second Subaltern Elizabeth Windsor, as she was known, was part of Number 1 ‘Beaufront’ Company and trained as a mechanic and truck driver in Surrey. Her classes included practical maintenance, mechanics theory and map reading. She told a friend, “I never worked so hard in my life. But I enjoyed it very much.” The princess graduated as a fully qualified driver, but the war ended before she was able to make practical use of her new skills
She remained a Junior Commander, Women’s Royal Army Corps after the war, rising to Captain by 1952 with semi-regular periods of service.
Like all monarchs, and members of the Windsor family, she has maintained her military obligations, and since 6 February 1952 has been Commander-in-Chief of the British Armed Forces.
As well as Colonel-in-Chief of the: Royal Australian Engineers, Royal Australian Infantry Corps, Royal Australian Army Ordnance Corps, Royal Australian Army Nursing Corps, le Régiment de la Chaudière, 48th Highlanders of Canada, Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders of Canada (Princess Louise’s), Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery, Governor General’s Horse Guards, King’s Own Calgary Regiment, Corps of Royal Canadian Engineers, Royal 22e Régiment, Governor General’s Foot Guards, Canadian Grenadier Guards, Carleton and York Regiment, Canadian Guards, Royal New Brunswick Regiment, Royal Canadian Ordnance Corps, Calgary Highlanders, Wellington Regiment, Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment, New Zealand Army Ordnance Corps, The Life Guards, Royal Horse Guards, Grenadier Guards, Coldstream Guards, Scots Guards, Irish Guards, Welsh Guards, Royal Regiment of Artillery, Corps of Royal Engineers, Royal Tank Regiment, Malawi Rifles, Blues and Royals (Royal Horse Guards and 1st Dragoons), Royal Scots Dragoon Guards, Corps of Royal Military Police, Queen’s Gurkha Engineers,Queen’s Royal Lancers, Royal Mercian and Lancastrian Yeomanry, Royal Welsh, Royal Regiment of Scotland, Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment.
As well as the Air-Commodore-in-Chief of the Territorial Air Force of New Zealand, Royal Auxiliary Air Force, Royal Air Force Regiment, Royal Observer Corps; Captain-General of the Honourable Artillery Company, Commandant-in-Chief of the Royal Air Force College, Countess of Ranfurly’s Own Auckland Regiment, et.al…