Violent Crime, Suicide, and Non Combat Death at Fort Hood, Texas (US Army)

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Photo Credit: Stanton Reality Group

Fort Hood is a U.S. military post located in Killeen, Texas. The post is named after Confederate General John Bell Hood. It is located halfway between Austin and Waco, about 60 miles (100 km) from each, within the U.S. state of Texas. -Wikipedia

*Research not complete.

Paige Briles, US Army (2016): Found Dead On-Post, Under Investigation

Allan Brown, US Army (2016): Suicide Bomber, Military Base, Afghanistan

Wanya Bruns, US Army (2016): Gunshot Wound, Under Investigation

Tyler Iubelt, US Army (2016): Suicide Bomber, Military Base, Afghanistan

Korey James, US Army (2016): Found Dead at Off Post Home, Under Investigation

Kevin Paulino, US Army (2016): Gunshot Wound, Under Investigation

John Perry, US Army (2016): Suicide Bomber, Military Base, Afghanistan

Dakota Stump, US Army (2016): Missing, Vehicle Accident on Base

Danny Ferguson, US Army (2014): Homicide Victim on Post

Carlos Lazaney-Rodriguez, US Army (2014): Homicide Victim on Post

Ivan Lopez, US Army (2014): Homicide, Attempted Homicide, Suicide

Timothy Owens, US Army (2014): Homicide Victim on Post

Michael Bailey II, US Army (2011): Death Ruled Suicide, Family Believes Murder

Michael Cahill, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

L. Eduardo Caraveo, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Justin DeCrow, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

John Gaffaney, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Frederick Greene, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Nidal Hasan, US Army (2009): Homicide, Terrorism, Sentenced to Death

Jason Hunt, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Amy Krueger, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Aaron Nemelka, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Michael Pearson, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Russell Seager, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Francheska Velez, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Jaunita Warman, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Kham Xiong, US Army (2009): Nidal Hasan Homicide Victim

Kamisha Block, US Army (2007): Homicide Victim, Iraq

Donald Gower, US Army (2007): Homicide, Sentenced to Life

Christine Ndururi, US Army (2007): Non Combat Related Illness, Kuwait

Paul Norris, US Army (2007): Homicide, Suicide, Iraq

Jeannette Dunn, US Army (2006): Non Combat Related Injury, Iraq

Erin Edwards, US Army (2004): Homicide Victim

William Edwards, US Army (2004): Homicide, Suicide

Gary Prokop, US Army (1998): Homicide Victim

Dwight Loving, US Army (1988): Homicide, Sentenced to Death

Spc. Michael Bailey II, US Army, Allegedly Committed Suicide, Family Petitions Military and Killeen Police Department to Investigate Ex-Wife for Murder (2011)

US Army

Spc. Michael Henry Bailey II, US Army, died on December 29, 2011 from injuries sustained from a gunshot wound on December 23, 2011. He was assigned to 4th Squadron, 9th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, in Fort Hood, Texas. Spc. Bailey deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom from May 2011 to November 2011. At the time of the Army press release, the incident was under investigation. According to a family petition, they believe that their was more evidence supporting murder then suicide. They asked the Army and the Killeen Police Department to investigate the circumstances further as they believe that Spc. Bailey’s ex-wife had motive (life insurance) and allege she was at his home on the day of the shooting.

“Everyone who believes in justice. Our son was killed in Killeen Tx December 22, 2010, they did not do any interrogation of the that night to be x wife, who had plenty of motive and who should have been tested for GPR and arrested not only walked but is on the army payroll the rest of her life and collected all of his insurance money for 3 years of cheating on her husband our son and who was on her last day under his roof. Now they call it suicide? They have less evidence of that than there is of murder. This is a tragedy that needs justice!” –Petition for Michael Bailey

Related Links:
Death of a Fort Hood soldier: Spc. Michael Henry Bailey II
‘Black Jack’ troopers mourn loss of Soldier
Justice for Army Spec E4 Michael Henry Bailey
Violent Crime, Suicide, and Non Combat Death at Fort Hood, Texas (US Army)

Pvt Danny Chen, US Army, Died of a Non Combat-Related Incident in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan (2011)

danny-chen

Pvt Danny Chen, US Army

Pvt. Danny Chen, 19, US Army, died of a non combat-related incident in Kandahar province, Afghanistan on October 3, 2011. Pvt Chen was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom on behalf of the 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division in Fort Wainwright, Alaska.

Related Links:
DOD Identifies Army Casualty
Army Pvt. Danny Chen
Hazing and Harassment in the Military
Army charges 8 in Afghanistan in death of fellow U.S. soldier
8 soldiers charged in death of fellow serviceman
8 U.S. Army Soldiers Charged in Death of Fellow Serviceman in Afghanistan
Danny Chen’s family seeks justice in Army hazing death
Pvt. Danny Chen’s Family Speaks Out Against Military Hazing As Final Soldier Faces Punishment
Pvt. Danny Chen, 1992–2011
Why Black America Should Care About Private Danny Chen’s Suicide
Death of Private Danny Chen: Military Admits Chen was Target of Race-Based Hazing on Daily Basis
Charges referred in Pvt. Danny Chen case
Pvt. Danny Chen committed suicide a day before he was to be transferred, witness says
Army suicide testimony: Sergeant taunted Danny Chen with slurs
As Danny Chen Case Continues, Questions About Soldiers’ Punishments
A Young Private’s Suicide Reflects a Massive Failure of Leadership
Platoon Leader Dismissed from Army for Hazing Death of Pvt. Danny Chen
Military Court Convicts US Soldier in Hazing Trial
Soldier Convicted in Pvt. Danny Chen Suicide Case
Three Years Later, A Moment of Silence for Private Danny Chen
OCA remembers Private Danny Chen
Who Killed Private Danny Chen?
Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, Pvt. Danny Chen, and our highly conditional love of American soldiers
An Opera Remembers The Tragedy Of An Asian-American Soldier
Manhattan Street Renamed for Danny Chen, Soldier Bullied into Suicide in Afghanistan
Outrage over Army platoon’s ‘Racial Thursdays’ where soldiers would hurl slurs at fellow troops and private who committed suicide once served

A1C Kelsey Anderson, US Air Force, Found Dead of Apparent Self-Inflicted Gunshot Wound in Hangar at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam (2011)

Kelsey Anderson

A1C Kelsey Anderson, US Air Force

Airman First Class Kelsey Anderson was found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam on June 9, 2011. According to media reports, she was found in a locked stall in a second-floor women’s bathroom inside an aircraft maintenance hangar at the base. The military investigation indicated that a few months after Kelsey arrived at Guam, she was stripped of her service revolver over mental health concerns. Although Kelsey’s weapons privileges had been restored about a month prior to her death. The reports stated that Kelsey may have been unhappy after trying and failing to be transferred from Guam or released from military service. Kelsey’s parents had to file a lawsuit in U.S. District Court to get the Air Force to turn over its investigation records. They simply wanted answers for their daughter’s tragic and unexpected, untimely death yet the Air Force concealed the details. Chris and Adelia Sue Anderson received the mostly redacted investigation reports almost two years after their daughter’s death. The final court settlement with the Air Force in September 2013 was for the cost of the attorney they had to hire in their quest to get the information they were entitled to have. It’s unfortunate that this family had to wait two years for answers and even more unfortunate that they were forced to go to court during one of the most difficult times of their life.

What could have been done to prevent this? What kind of mental health services were offered to Kelsey? Why did Kelsey want to leave Guam and/or get out of the military? Why was she upset after finding out that she was not able to transfer or get out of the military? What were the extenuating circumstances that made Kelsey feel like she had no options other then suicide? Is this a suicide? After so many families have come forward with concerns that their loved one was murdered despite a ruling of suicide, do we know for sure that this was a suicide? It happened in Guam. There is absolutely no one to hold the Air Force accountable in that setting. There is no way to ensure that the Air Force investigated the scene as both a potential homicide or suicide. It’s as simple as what the Air Force says happens is what happened. Every government entity should have a mechanism by which they are held accountable. Where does a grieving parent turn to when they do not agree with the military investigator’s or medical examiner’s findings? Who holds the individual branches or Department of Defense accountable? The only body of people that can hold the military industrial complex accountable is the US Congress and even they struggle. Time and time again we hear accounts from service members and families that contacting their congressional Representative or Senator did not help. Some help, some don’t, and some never call you back. Every level of government should have accountability of some kind because this country was founded on the principles of checks and balances in our system.

“Enlisting U.S. Sen. Jim Risch‘s office for help still didn’t yield results.” -Chris & Adelia Sue Anderson

In an interview the Andersons’ lawyer emphasized that the prolonged wait and anxiety of suing the federal government in a last-ditch effort for information intensified the couple’s pain after the loss of their daughter. He empathized as a father of three and shared that he could not imagine losing a child thousands of miles away and not knowing what happened to her. No parent should have to wait nearly two years before the government decides to produce the information they deserve to have.

Related Links:
AAFB Mourns Loss of Airman 1st Class Kelsey Anderson
AAFB airman’s death ruled suicide
Grieving parents sue Air Force for answers in daughter’s death
Adelia Sue Anderson Parents Sues Air Force Over Death Daughter
The Long Goodbye: What happened to Kelsey Anderson?
The Long Goodbye: An Idaho Family Fights to Learn the Truth About Their Daughter’s Death
Was it murder? Mystery as Air Force claims 19 year old airwoman committed suicide in Guam base but family deny she was depressed and say they’ve been blocked from getting answers
Family finally getting answers on daughters death
AP: Documents Shed New Light on Suicide of Idaho Airman
Documents reveal mental health struggles of Airman Kelsey Anderson
Idaho airman under mental scrutiny before death
AP: Parents of Kelsey Anderson, Idaho Airman Who Died of Apparent Self-Inflicted Gunshot Wound on Guam Air Base, Settle Lawsuit with Air Force
Idaho airman’s family settles with Air Force
Air Force will Pay Idaho Parent’s Legal Fees in Suicide Case of Daughter


The grieving parents of a 19-year-old Idaho woman who died serving her country thousands of miles from home say the U.S. Air Force won’t give them information about the circumstances of her death.

Army Staff Sgt Amy Tirador Died of a Non Combat Related Incident in Iraq, Army Ruled Suicide But Family Believes Execution Style Murder & Cover-Up (2009)

Honoring SSG Amy Seyboth-Tirador, US Army (2009)

Staff Sgt. Amy Tirador, US Army

Staff Sgt. Amy (Seyboth) Tirador, US Army, died of injuries sustained from a non-combat related incident in Kirkush, Iraq on November 4, 2009. Staff Sgt. Tirador was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom on behalf of the 209th Military Intelligence Company, 1st Squadron, 14th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division in Fort Lewis, Washington. This was Amy’s third tour of duty in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The Department of Defense announced the circumstances surrounding the incident were under investigation at the time of the press release. Media reports declared that Amy was found by a maintenance worker in the base’s small generator room with a single gunshot wound to the back of the head. The Army pathologist ruled the cause of death as a ‘self inflicted gunshot wound’ but Amy’s mother Colleen Murphy disagreed and vowed to launch a private investigation. The family expressed concerns publicly that this was an execution style murder on a secure base and that she was killed in the generator room to muffle the sounds of the gunshot. Amy’s DNA evidence was found on the 9mm and that of another person. The family shared that the investigation report attempted to lead one to believe that Amy was considered high risk for suicide because of pressures at work as an Arabic translator and a strained marriage. Amy’s husband Michael Tirador was living at the same deployed location in Iraq as Amy at the time of her death. Amy’s mother denied any history of depression or substance abuse and does not believe her daughter committed suicide.

A year after Amy’s death the Army Criminal Investigation Division indicated in media reports that the investigation was not completed and no final rulings had been made. Yet Colleen Murphy shared that she was told the case was officially closed and expressed frustration with the miscommunication she typically experienced with Army bureaucracy. Amy’s mother also indicated that a lot of women in the military who have died have had their deaths falsely ruled as suicides. Colleen learned from other families who have lost their loved ones that they have even exhumed their daughters’ bodies and found that, without a shadow of a doubt, they did not kill themselves. Colleen indicated that she was going to get a second autopsy in light of the Army pathologist’s determination of cause of death. Michael Tirador expressed in interviews that he did not believe that his wife committed suicide and ordered that her body be exhumed for a second autopsy. Michael was of course a person of interest but his DNA did not match the second DNA profile on the gun. Colleen Murphy indicated that despite Michael’s claims that they had a good marriage, Amy wanted to divorce him. Amy’s father Greg Seyboth expressed concern that her work as a interrogator made her a high-profile target. Retired Army Colonel Ann Wright validated Amy’s family when she published an article stating that several female soldier’s deaths have been grossly mislabled by the military yet when faced with further evidence, they refused to change their findings. Colleen Murphy stated that she will never accept that her daughter committed suicide and that the Army is covering up the real reason that she was killed.

Tirador’s “greatness” has been shrouded in military “secrecy”. Her military legacy clouded by the military’s label of a “non-combat” death. An execution-style death in a “secure area” on an American military base in a war zone. –Family of Amy Tirador

Learn more: Who Murdered Staff Sgt. Amy C. Tirador While On An American Base In A Secure Location?

Related Links:
DOD Identifies Army Casualty
Army Staff Sgt. Amy C. Tirador
Staff Sgt. Amy Tirador
Amy C. (Seyboth) Tirador Obituary
Last rites for Colonie soldier
Bike ride for Amy Seyboth-Tirador
Ride to honor Staff Sgt. Amy Seyboth Tirador, 3rd Brigade
Soldiers of Misfortune: Months Before an Army Psychiatrist Went on a Rampage at Fort Hood, a Texas Army Sergeant Allegedly Murdered Five Troops by Non-Hostile Fire in Iraq
Army says it was suicide; family of soldier not so sure
Report says soldier ‘defeated’
Report says soldier ‘defeated’ (SF Gate)
Fort Lewis soldier was murdered, family says
Mother claims coverup in daughter’s death
Family Seeks Answers in Soldier’s Mysterious Death
Fort Lewis Sgt. Amy Tirador May Not Have Shot Herself in Back of the Head After All, Army Says
New info. could turn Colonie soldier’s death into murder case
Honoring Our Fallen Soldiers (New York State Senate Resolution)
“She always smiled:” New documents raise old questions in soldier’s death
Colonie soldier’s mom pledges to investigate death
Military women die in suspicious non-combat events. Families ask: Why?
Staff Sgt. Amy C. Tirador (Memorial Day i-note)
Is There an Army Cover Up of Rape and Murder of Women Soldiers?
Is This How We Treat Our Female Soldiers?
Lavena Johnson, Morganne Mcbeth, Amy Tirador, Where Is The Justice? – Poem by Luke Easter

Brig Gen Thomas Tinsley, USAF (2008)

Thomas Tinsley, USAF

Honoring Brig Gen Thomas Tinsley, USAF, who died July 27, 2008. He was serving as a Wing Commander at Elmendorf AFB in Alaska when he was found dead with a gunshot wound to his chest. He was a fighter pilot and flew the F-15, F/A-18 and F-22A. His unexpected death was ruled a suicide by military officials. The circumstances surrounding his death are being questioned by others including his family. His family deserves answers and that is why he is listed under cold cases.

Air Force officer in Alaska dies in likely suicide
Air Force Officer Dead; Likely a Suicide
General’s death in July ruled a suicide
Elmendorf wing CO dies of gunshot wound
Elmendorf general dies of gunshot on base
Brig. Gen. Tinsley, 3rd Wing commander at Elmendorf, dies of gunshot wound
Ex-Raptor commander at Langley dies in Alaska
Elmendorf mourns fallen commander
F-22 Safety Concerns Linger
General’s wife: ‘Raptor Cough’ contributed to husband’s suicide
New Questions Raised in 2008 Suicide of Air Force General Who Was F-22 Pilot, Commander at Alaska Air Base
Don’t Look for Many Details on Apparent “Suicide” of Gen. Tinsley from Here on Out

SrA Blanca Luna, USAF Reserve, Was Discovered Stabbed to Death in Base Lodging at Sheppard AFB in Texas, Incident is Under Investigation (2008)

SrA Blanca Luna, US Air Force (2008)

SrA Blanca Luna, US Air Force Reserve

On March 7, 2008, SrA Blanca A. Luna, 27, US Air Force Reserve, was found unresponsive and with injuries consistent with a stab wound in her billeting room at Sheppard Air Force Base in Texas three days prior to graduating and heading back home. She was discovered with a knife in the back of her neck according to the death certificate and no pants or underwear and dried fluid near her groin according to the autopsy. She was taken to a local hospital in Wichita Falls where she died shortly thereafter. She was an Air Force Reservist on temporary duty at Sheppard AFB attending a technical training course for Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC).  She was a Marine from 1997 to 2002 and then became a Reservist in 2007 at the 434rd Civil Engineer Squadron, Grissom Air Reserve Base in Indiana. She loved the military. She was living in the Chicago, Illinois area and studying Graphic Design.

Because this death occurred on a federal installation, the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI) was the lead on the investigation. They initially labeled the death a “suspicious incident”. According to AFOSI, the FBI assisted with the investigation. The FBI processed the crime scene and collaborated with the ensuing Air Force investigation. The AFOSI referred to the death as a homicide in the media in the early stages of the investigation. Six months later they would be accused of leading the family to believe it was a suicide despite evidence suggesting otherwise. Six months after her death, no official determination was made as to the manner of death: homicide, suicide, or accident. Eventually, the family learned from the autopsy report that the official manner of death was considered “undetermined”. No suspects were ever identified.

“AFOSI has been the lead investigative agency since Airman Luna’s death. At AFOSI’s request, the FBI sent an evidence response team to process the scene immediately after Airman Luna was found, and the two agencies have continued to cooperate in the investigation. Agents have been assigned to the case on a full-time basis, and more than 350 interviews have been conducted at locations across the country. Findings have been reviewed by a diverse team of experts, including specialists in forensics, polygraph, computer investigation, behavioral psychology and forensic pathology…More than 200 DNA tests have been done.”

Two of Blanca’s friends who had visited her at the base noted that she had talked about problems with some airman in her classes. She felt that they resented her because of her rank and the fact that she was a woman in a leadership position. When Blanca’s body arrived in Chicago, the family observed bruises on Blanca’s face as if she had been punched or had fallen and scratches between her fingers that appeared to be defensive wounds. Luna’s family insists that she would never commit suicide and that the evidence does not support that suggestion. In October 2008, Gloria Barrios traveled to Texas from Chicago to get some answers, including the autopsy report, from the Air Force but she didn’t get anything except a tour of the base. Gloria had questions about the bruises, defensive wounds, and the fluid found near Blanca’s groin but never received any answers. Blanca’s mom feels that this is a cover-up.

The family believes that AFOSI did not investigate the crime with due diligence and was trying to lead them to believe Blanca committed suicide. They initially determined that it was a homicide and investigated it as a crime. This is problematic because instead of listing the death as an unsolved murder or cold case, it can be written off as a suicide and never investigated again. After Gloria’s visit to Sheppard AFB, the Air Force released a statement that said “deaths are investigated as homicides initially, but that nothing suggests that anyone on base is in danger.” This statement is troublesome because the murder occurred within the confines of a secure military base. One cannot get onto the base without military identification. It had to be someone affiliated with the base that either lives and/or works there. The Air Force cannot guarantee the base’s safety when they do not even know who committed the crime. Blanca’s mom wants answers from military officials, and she wants them to classify Luna’s death as a homicide and find the culprit. Was the DNA collected at the scene compared to the national DNA database (CODIS)? Five years later, still with no answers, Gloria Barrios was battling depression and hospitalized. Eight years later, the case is still considered “under investigation” and highlights the need for cold case squads in the military.

“My gut feeling is they are looking for a culprit outside of the base, but the murderer is on the base. They’re looking in the wrong place…I can’t express what I feel about these people. They’re [Air Force] treating me like dirt. They are driving me crazy. It’s like they’re playing with my mind, giving me bad information.” -Gloria Barrios (Blanca’s mom)

The incident is under investigation by the Air Force Office of Special Investigations and the Sheppard AFB security forces squadron. Anyone with information regarding the case should call Sheppard Air Force Base security forces at (940) 676-2981 [or Sheppard AFOSI at (940) 676-1852].

Related Links:
Air Force identifies deceased Airman
Air Force Identifies Murdered Reservist
‘Suspicious’ death: Student airman with stab wound dies in hospital
Texas Air Force Reservist Found Stabbed to Death in Hotel
Indiana Air Force reservist found fatally stabbed in Texas
Indiana Airman found dead at base in Texas
Grissom Airman found dead in Texas
Military probes reservist’s slaying
Murder on the Base?
OSI continues to investigate March 7 death
Airman’s Mom Seeks Truth About Death
Mother of Murdered Female Airman To Request Meeting on Oct. 3 with Sheppard Air Force Base officials on Status of Investigation
Blanca Luna’s mother went to Texas but learned nothing about her daughter’s death on an air force base
Dead airman’s family unhappy about lack of progress in case
Family suspects cover-up in airman’s death on base
The Murder of Military Women Continues
Our Town: Gloria Barrios
Justice for Blanca Luna
5th Anniversary of Unsolved Murder on Sheppard Air Force Base
Find a Grave: Blanca Adriana Luna (1980 – 2008)

Spc Keisha Morgan, US Army (2006)

Honoring Spc Keisha Morgan @USArmy (2006)

Spc Keisha M. Morgan, US Army, Feb 2008

Non-combat death in Iraq; Army investigators ruled her death a suicide brought on by an overdose of her military-dispensed prescription antidepressants; Family believes Keisha may have been raped and murdered.

“But Keisha had confided in her mother about a night when she was certain a fellow soldier had slipped something in her drink at a local bar. When she awoke the following morning–failing to remember how she left the bar and returned to barracks–the soldier was in her room. This same man was on base at the time of Keisha’s death, says her mother, recalling her daughter’s concern about this. A week later, a roommate found Keisha lying on the floor and couldn’t tell if she was sleeping. Keisha erupted in seizures and the roommate ran for help. Medics could not stabilize her and she passed away.” ~WeNews

Related Links:
Army Spc. Keisha M. Morgan
District Soldier Keisha Morgan Dies in Iraq
Soldier in Iraq dies of non-combat cause
Mother of One Dead Soldier Suspects Sex Assault
U.S. Military Keeping Secrets About Female Soldiers’ ‘Suicides’?

Cpl Ciara Durkin, US Army, Died from a Non Combat Related Incident in Afghanistan, Death Ruled Suicide But Ciara Asked Family to Investigate if Anything Happened While Serving (2007)

Honoring Spc Ciara Durkin @USArmy (2006)

Cpl Ciara Durkin, US Army

Cpl. Ciara Durkin, US Army, died from a non combat related incident in Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan on September 28, 2007. Cpl. Durkin was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom on behalf of the 726th Finance Battalion, Massachusetts Army National Guard in West Newton, Massachusetts. According to the Department of Defense, the circumstances surrounding the incident were under investigation at the time of the press release. Ciara was found dead near a chapel on a secure base with a gunshot wound to the head about an hour and a half after leaving work on a Friday. The cause of death was ruled a suicide by Army investigators. According to media reports, the family believes Ciara’s death is suspicious because she shared in an e-mail that in her Finance role, she uncovered some things she didn’t like and feared she made some enemies. She asked her family to investigate if anything were to happen to her while she was serving. Ciara’s brother indicated that Ciara had left a happy birthday message for him on the day that she died. He said she sounded heartbreakingly upbeat. The family announced they were going to commission an independent autopsy and were demanding answers from the military with the assistance of then Senator John Kerry (D-MA). They told CBS News that initially they had been told that she was killed in action then later the manner of death was changed to non combat related injuries. After the e-mails, warnings, and other observations, the family rightfully feared Ciara had been murdered. They were not sure what the motive was but they speculated that it could be because of what she uncovered in the Finance office and/or a hate crime. The family feared that Ciara’s sexual orientation played a role in her death as well. In media reports, the family expressed that their grief is made more torturous by the limited information released by the Army, and rumors. They shared that misinformation following the deaths or injuries of service members does not help them with remembrances of their loved one during a time of grief. Like most families who have lost a loved one, they want to know what happened and they want to know the truth.

Most frustrating to the family, the Army is offering very little information and no explanations…Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., who has been helping the family, says it’s not enough and he and is demanding answers. In a letter to Defense Secretary Robert Gates, Kerry asked why the family had not been given autopsy results and why the Army hadn’t answered the family’s request for an independent autopsy. –ABC News

Related Links:
DoD Identifies Army Casualty
Army Cpl. Ciara M. Durkin
Ciara M. Durkin, Corporal, United States Army
Quincy woman is latest war casualty
Family, city, state honor slain soldier from Quincy
Kin say soldier hinted at concerns
Mystery Surrounds Death of U.S. Soldier
Another Mysterious Death of a Soldier Overseas
NPR & Other National Media Outlets Continue to Ignore the LaVena Johnson Case, An Open Letter to NPR: A Tale of Two Soldiers
How Did Specialist Ciara Durkin Die?
How Did Specialist Ciara Durkin Die? (The Constantine Report)
What happened to Ciara Durkin?
Slain Lesbian Soldier Ciara Durkin Remembered
Justice for Ciara Durkin
Army rules soldier from Mass. killed self
Army rules Quincy soldier’s death a suicide
Death of Quincy soldier in Afghanistan ruled a suicide, family says
Army: Ciara Durkin’s death a suicide
Army says Ciara took her own life
Ciara Durkin: Lesbian soldier suspiciously shot dead in Afghanistan; Army calls it a suicide
Murder on the Base?
Corporal Laid to Rest After 2007 Suicide
Questions surround death of Irish-born soldier
Was Army Specialist In Afghanistan Murdered?
Mass. service members who died in Afghanistan
U.S. Military Is Keeping Secrets About Female Soldiers’ ‘Suicides’
Ten years later, Army Private LaVena Johnson’s family still grieves and questions the Army’s version of her death
Massachusetts Fallen Heroes

MA1 Jennifer Valdivia, US Navy, Died in a Non Combat Related Incident in Bahrain, NCIS Ruled Death Suicide by Carbon Monoxide Poisoning (2007)

Honoring Jennifer Valdivia @USNavy (2007)

Jennifer Valdivia, US Navy

MA1 Jennifer Valdivia, 27, US Navy, died in a non combat related incident in Bahrain on January 16, 2007. MA1 Valdivia was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom on behalf of the naval security force for Naval Support Activity in Bahrain. At the time of the press release the Department of Defense announced that her death was under investigation and Bahrain was located within the designated hostile fire zone. Naval Criminal Investigation Services (NCIS) eventually ruled her death suicide by carbon monoxide poisoning.

Toussaint, who led the Bahrain unit until March 2006, was at the center of a 2007 command investigation that documented more than 90 instances of abuse, including sailors being ordered to simulate homosexual sex in training videos, hogtied to chairs and force-fed dog treats. “If my daughter didn’t do what he told her to do, he would embarrass her in front of everybody in the kennel, belittle her,” Young said. “Everybody who was friends with Jennifer tells me the same story: She was the fall person. She was the scapegoat.” ~Pilot Online

Jennifer was at the center of command directed investigation of abuse of prisoners in Bahrain. It was reported that she did not want to participate in war crimes yet was belittled, harassed, and abused by a supervisor if she didn’t do what he told her to do. If she had a way out, could this suicide have been prevented? Was it a suicide? Was it ever investigated as a homicide? Who found her? Was it reported to the Commander first? Did the Commander do an initial investigation? Does the Navy have NCIS located in Bahrain? How quickly did NCIS respond to the scene located in what is described as a designated hostile fire zone?

Related Links:
DoD Identifies Navy Casualty
Navy Master-at-Arms 1st Class Jennifer A. Valdivia
Report Leaked on Navy Suicide
Report: Sailors hogtied, fed dog treats
U.S. Navy sailors say they were hazed, abused
Abuse Probe May Have Pushed Navy Sailor To Suicide
Navy: Investigation drove sailor in dog-handling unit to kill self
Report outlines security unit hazing, assault
Gay Sailor: My Comrades Locked Me In A ‘Feces-Filled Dog Kennel’
‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Didn’t Protect Me From Abuse in the Navy
Ex-sailor denies hazing by senior
Brutal Navy Hazing Rituals Probed
Navy petty officer to face punishment in hazing
Navy Admits it Was Wrong in Case of Dog Handler
Navy Chief in Anti-Gay Hazing Case to Retire with Full Rank and Pay
Navy’s reprimand of leader not enough for man who lost daughter
Two years later, sailor to be forced out for role in hazing scandal
AP’s Misleading Report on Navy Reversal: I Did Not Ask for Anti-Gay Hazing
Navy veteran combats ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’
Is There an Army Cover Up of Rape and Murder of Women Soldiers?
The Deadliest Year, In ’07 the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars Claimed More Than 1,000 U.S. Lives, Bringing the Death Toll to 4,354
Top female navy commander sacked over humiliating initiation ordeals on board ship
Non Combat Deaths of Female Soldiers in the US Military (Other Areas)