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Top Gun’ Inspiration Christine Fox Now Highest-Ranking Female In Pentagon History (Video)

Photo credit: Department of Defense

Christine H. Fox

When President Barack Obama named Christine H. Fox to be Acting Deputy Secretary of Defense on Tuesday, she became the highest-ranking female in the Department of Defense's history.

Cool side note: Fox was also the inspiration for the Kelly McGillis character "Charlie" in the 1986 blockbuster Top Gun.

According to a People magazine article from 1985:

When Top Gun producers Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer were trying to decide on a proper love interest for the film, they first considered groupies and gymnasts as paramours for Cruise. (McGillis says she was cast as a gymnast in the first script she received and wasn't interested.)

During a meeting with the producers, the admiral commanding the wing asked Fox to step into his office and a part was born.

This was back when MCAS Miramar was Miramar Naval Air Station. Fox, just 30-years-old at the time, was working on base as a the only female civilian employee at the Center for Naval Analyses. Her job, according to People magazine, was "developing tactics for the defense of aircraft carriers."

Cut to almost three decades later - when Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel recommended Obama appoint Fox as Acting Deputy Secretary of Defense, replacing Ash Carter until a permanent replacement is found:

"Christine, who until recently served as the department's Director of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation, is a brilliant defense thinker and proven manager...

She will be able to help me shape our priorities from day one because she knows the intricacies of the department's budget, programs and global operations better than anyone."

Still, despite her groundbreaking appointment, Fox may always have to live down the role she inspired in one of the most cheesy/awesome movies from the 1980s.

Here's the infamous "I'd tell you, but then I'd have to kill you" scene from Top Gun:

'Top Gun' clip

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