Listening to the LiveATC feed, it's amazing how calm and composed the pilot was. She is certainly an example of composure under pressure.
There is some reporting emerging that she was one the first female fighter pilots in the history of the U.S. Navy and one of the first women to ever fly the F/A-18 before she became an instructor. This is apparently from her schools's alumni newsletter from 10+ years ago:
"Alumna of the Year: Tammie Jo (Bonnell) Shults
Tammie Jo Shults with her Navy fighter jet.
When she tried to attend aviation career day at her high school, Tammie Jo (Bonnell) Shults was told they didn’t accept girls.
Wondering what step to take next, she decided to enroll at MNU because it had a good pre-med program and she had an interest in veterinary medicine. However Shults’ desire to fly never went away.
“In my junior year I went to an Air Force winging with a friend whose brother was getting his wings,” said Shults. “And, lo, there was a girl in his class.”
After graduation, Shults applied to the Air Force, but found they wouldn’t allow her to take the test to become a pilot. The Navy, however, was more welcoming.
Shults became one of the first female fighter pilots in the history of the U.S. Navy and one of the first women to fly F-18s. She landed her fighter plane on boats at 150 miles per hour and eventually became an instructor. Although she wasn’t allowed to fly in combat, she did fly as an aggressor pilot. After a successful career, she resigned her commission in 1993. Shults and her husband, Dean, are now captains with Southwest Airlines."https://heavy.com/news/2018/04/tammie-j ... gine-hero/