Showing posts with label Ramstein Air Base. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ramstein Air Base. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Military Sexual Assaults committed against males 53%

Air Force member's allegation of sex assault brings him more grief
Tribune Washington Bureau
By David S. Cloud
Published: January 1, 2014

TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. — Shortly after he arrived at Ramstein Air Base in Germany in March 2012, Air Force security guard Trent Smith was at an off-base apartment when, he says, a male sergeant touched him and pressed him to go into the bedroom for sex.

"I said, 'No, I don't want to spend the night,' " Smith recalled. But Smith, 20, says he felt he had no choice. "I went along with it."

For Smith, the encounter — which he reported up the chain of command three days later — began an emotional ordeal. As the months passed, his doctors say, the trim, polite airman with an engaging smile suffered bouts of anger, guilt and depression so severe that he contemplated suicide several times.

More disturbing for a Pentagon struggling to gain control of a seeming epidemic of charges concerning rape and unwanted sexual advances in the ranks, Smith's attempts to get help only worsened his troubles. After a lengthy investigation, the military decided that no crime had occurred, and it later moved to discharge Smith on medical grounds.

The case highlights a little-recognized reality for the male-dominated military. Although members of Congress have focused their outrage on abuse of women in uniform, the Pentagon reported in May that 53 percent of the estimated 26,000 troops who were raped or forced into sex last year were men.
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Thursday, January 3, 2013

Military families share roof, sometimes grief at Fisher Houses

Military families share roof, sometimes grief at Fisher Houses
The Washington Post
Published: January 3, 2013

WASHINGTON — There were plenty of times, Bridgit Fennell remembers, when new families checked into the guest house at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and inevitably asked her all the personal questions.

Was your husband in combat theater? What's his prognosis? Sometimes she chafed at having to answer them again and again.

But Fennell, whose husband Ken Fennell, a Navy Band saxophonist, died on Christmas Eve from brain cancer, prefers to recall the moments of kinship: the girlfriend her teenage son met at Fisher House. Or the time she prayed with a Tennessee family after their son died from wounds in Afghanistan.

"We looked in each other's eyes, and we all cried," recalled Fennell, whose Maryland family has stayed at the Walter Reed-based group house for nearly a year and is checking out this month. "We were meant to be together for that moment."

These are the little-seen glimpses of life at the nation's Fisher Houses, group homes at every big military medical campus, as well as two by Ramstein Air Base in Germany.

The Fisher Houses offer free lodging to members of the military, veterans, and their relatives, who need treatment at the nearby military or Veterans Affairs hospital.
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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Ramstein Air Base students "hoodie up" for Trayvon Martin

Ramstein students put on their hoodies for Trayvon Martin
Stars and Stripes
Published: April 3, 2012

RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany — In a show of solidarity for slain Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, more than 230 students at Ramstein High School wore hooded sweatshirts or jackets to class Tuesday as part of a peaceful demonstration they called “Hoodies Up.”

 The intent was to show that wearing a hoodie should not make a person appear threatening, said 17-year-old senior Caleb Guerrido, one of five students who came up with the idea of wearing hoodies to school. 

Martin, 17, was shot Feb. 26 by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman as he walked back to the townhouse of his father’s girlfriend in the gated community of Sanford. Zimmerman, 28, told police that Martin, who was unarmed, was wearing a dark hoodie and looked “suspicious.” He claimed that when he questioned Martin, the teen jumped him and that he shot him in self defense.
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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Wounded Soldiers Stuck in Middle of Aircraft Battle

Wounded Soldiers Stuck in Middle of Aircraft Battle
Sharon Weinberger

This is the third in a series of stories by our special correspondent about military aviation issues linked to the war in Afghanistan. Read also the growing pains of the Afghan air force and the attempts of women pilots to find a place in it.

RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany (Oct. 30) -- More than two dozen injured U.S. troops, including six critical-care patients, have been loaded onto the C-17 transport aircraft destined for Andrews Air Force Base, Md. Then everyone aboard gets the bad news:

There's a fuel leak, and the aircraft may not be able to fly today.

That means more waiting for the patients, a number of whom were wounded in operations in Afghanistan.

If the aircraft can't be fixed within a few hours, a new aircraft will have to be found, and that's easier said than done. Flights these like -- aeromedical evacuation -- have a high priority, but with military operations in Afghanistan surging, finding an aircraft can be a game of musical chairs.
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Wounded Soldiers Stuck in Middle