Diane Diekman
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Diane Jean Diekman grew up on a South Dakota farm, attended a one-room country school in the Hidewood Valley, and graduated from Clear Lake High School in 1968. Today she is a retired U.S. Navy captain and an author.


Four years at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, provided her with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education, English and Spanish. When a mandated closure of rural schools ended her teaching dream, Diekman enlisted in the U.S. Navy. After two years as an aviation storekeeper, she attended officer candidate school and earned a commission in 1975.


Designated an aeronautical maintenance duty officer in 1979, Diekman was promoted to captain in 1997. She commanded Defense Contract Management Agency Van Nuys in Los Angeles, and her final assignment before retirement was the Office of the Naval Inspector General in Washington D.C.


Live Fast, Love Hard: The Faron Young Story, Diekman's biography of Country Music Hall of Fame member Faron Young, was recently published by the University of Illinois Press. Her previous books are Navy Greenshirt: A Leader Made, Not Born, a memoir of her military career, and A Farm in the Hidewood: My South Dakota Home, her childhood memoir. For five years, she wrote a newspaper column of military and travel experiences.


Captain Diekman is listed in Marquis Who’s Who of American Women 1997-1998, 2000-2001, and 2002-2003. She graduated from the Naval War College and holds two master's degrees from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University--a Master of Aeronautical Science and a Master of Business Administration in Aviation.


An avid runner, Diekman has more than a dozen marathons and ultramarathons to her credit. She loves country-western music, dancing and reading, is active in her Lutheran church, and owns a Mary Kay beauty consultant business. She lives in Maryland with her daughters, April and Amanda. Diekman is currently writing her second Country Music Hall of Fame biography, Twentieth Century Drifter: The Life of Marty Robbins.

My first ultramarathon -- 40 miles in 8:05 hours
Ultramarathon (1991)
--Diane Diekman photo collection