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First woman leads UK Changing of the Guard ceremony


LONDON — A Canadian soldier has made history as the first woman to lead the Changing of the Guard ceremony at London’s Buckingham Palace.

Megan Cuoto led her unit as it changed Queen Elizabeth II’s guards on Monday. The unit was invited to Britain to mark Canada’s 150th anniversary.

The 24-year-old Cuoto is marking her first visit to London.

Before the ceremony, Cuoto said that “I’m just focusing on doing my job as best I can and staying humble. Any of my peers would be absolutely delighted to be Captain of the Queen’s Guard and I’m equally honoured.”

The role of Mounting The Queen’s Guard usually falls to the male-dominated British Army’s Household Division. Women are being phased into more roles over the next three years.

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