Military Bureaucracy – Ya Gotta Love It!

| January 19, 2013

All of us here at TAH probably have funny stories about run-arounds, SNAFUs, and the like involving military bureaucracy or paperwork.  So it occurred to me that posting an article on the subject and inviting comments from TAH’s readers might be worthwhile.

Since I’m posting the article, I guess that means I’m “on the hook” for the first such story.  Fair enough; here goes.

Each service has its own admin practices and procedures.  Most of the time, they actually work fairly well.

Even the Army’s orders process generally works – though like a dancing bear, it often does so somewhat less than gracefully.  Once it took 3 tries for DA to slide a reporting date of mine 30 days “to the right” (later).   I guess that change must have had the same clerk-typist processing it that had trouble spelling “Fort Rucker” in this article.  (smile)

But that’s not the funniest admin SNAFU that ever happened to me personally.

In 2007-2008, I was ordered back to active duty for a tour in the CENTCOM AOR.  I spent virtually all of that year serving in either Afghanistan or Iraq.

During January 2008, my duty station was in Iraq – Baghdad, to be precise.  Except for R&R, I’d been there since August and in theater since April.

Well, in January 2008 I got the following amendment to the orders recalling me to active duty and sending me to the sandbox.  It was sent to me at my home of record; my spouse forwarded me a copy.

I’ve redacted PII and a couple of other bits of info.  Take a look at the text in the red box.  (Click on the image to enlarge it.)

Yep, you read that right.  I’m deployed to the sandbox, stationed in Baghdad and have been there for months, in the middle of a no-joke shooting war.  And the Army sends me an amendment to my freaking orders telling me I need to check in with Post billeting and reminding me that if I want to live “on the economy” I need a statement of nonavailability.

I got a really good laugh out of that bit of bureaucratic idiocy.  (smile)

— — —

OK, there have to be better stories than that out there.  Fire away!

Category: Dumbass Bullshit, War Stories, Who knows

Comments (39)

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  1. Former3c0 says:

    A few years ago while stationed at a GSU about 2 hours from our MOB we realized that one of our GOVs had a brake light out. Naturally this make it unavailable for use due to safety concerns ;). The unit had no money, and we didn’t have an auto shop on our base so we were going to have to bring it to the vehicle ops office at our MOB. Well it would’ve been placed in queue and we would be given a loaner vehicle to drive back to our GSU. My supervisor tried to ask finance if there was any way we could be given some money to get the brake light fixed on the economy and we were told no, as it was a GOV we’d HAVE to bring it to vehicle ops. So, roughly 8 hours and 480 miles of driving (think of the cost of gas), plus the labor and wait time at the MOB, just to replace a light bulb.

    In the end we just paid out of pocket (1.50 euro or so) for a new bulb and made an unauthorized fix on the GOV.

  2. Doc Bailey says:

    In the middle of being in an honest to God shooting war, I got a notice from the selective service that if I didn’t register it was a potential felony. After my mom called their offices and explained that i was actually in the army (which cancels SS automatically) and actually deployed to a warzone, three months later I again get a warning that if i do not register with the draft. . . you get the picture.

    Kind of hard to draft someone already at war.

  3. teddy996 says:

    The biggest one I had was when I recieved my orders to report to the George Washington at Norfolk, fresh out of prototype school. The orders were cut three days prior from when I showed up. The gate guard at NOB looked at me funny when I asked him directions to the ‘Dub. He knew the ‘Dub had pulled lines a month ago, but didn’t know where it deployed to. After a few calls, he found that she was laid up in dry dock at Portsmouth Naval Yard. Kind of a big thing for a carrier, and something the dipshits cutting the orders should have known.

  4. FatCircles0311 says:

    So there I was checking out on camp lejeune and getting my paperwork signed. This dumb bitch at records told me i was KIA. I guess thats funny….

    My combat action ribbon wasnt added into my record until 4 years after the award date 3 of which were after my EAS.

    Its been months since i filled out and mailed my signature to get a copy of my DD214. Pretty sure they said fuck it and threw my request away. Thanks marine corps!

  5. ron says:

    i wish i still had my first DD214 to show you—apparently i had no basic training, no AIT, but 5 1/2 months after being drafted i magically arrived in vietnam, then left 11 1/2 months later, having done nothing the whole time, then was sent to ft ord. it took a while to fix that. i should have kept it, but who thinks of that when all you want is to forget about it.

  6. streetsweeper says:

    Back in the day, I received orders to proceed to the airport catch a flight to fetch a wayward individual and return him to a brigade hq for out-processing. Checking in, the ticket agent was looking over my orders, boarding pass requisition and started giggling. She replied the town I had orders to fly to was on the map all right but, the airport there (small county airport)wasn’t equipped for commercial passenger jets. Call in explain problem, return to base. Spent two days getting amended orders so I could sign out a car from motor pool. The clerk (civilian)that typed up first set of orders, did second set and lost them in transition between her desk and the CO’s desk. I caught the heat for losing them. After convincing the CO I hadn’t seen or held them in my hands or I would have been long gone, he sent me to pick up individual anyway. The amended orders in triplicate turned up in the mail at another base. I never did get an apology from Big Army.

  7. 11B vet says:

    Not really an admin error but I was slotted for Ranger school after I got back from Iraq the first time. It’s not easy getting a slot from a mech unit but when I received my orders it read “Recruiter” school instead of Ranger school. Apparently the Department of the Army selected me for recruiting duty and deleted my orders for Ranger. No tab but I got a shiny silver badge that said I was qualified to put high school dropouts in the army after only ten weeks of training. FYI, I failed every section of the school on purpose to go back to the infantry and they still passed me. All the volunteer recruiters got booted by week 2…

  8. AW1 Tim says:

    In 1980, I received orders transferring me from VP-10 (Patrol Squadron Ten) stationed at Naval Air Station, Brunswick, Maine, to the ASW Operations Center at the same base.

    Now, VP-10 was upgrading to a newer version of the P-3 Orion aircraft, and the ASWOC wanted me to be qualified in type. Fine by me, says I. The problem was that since I was transferring out, VP-10 wasn’t willing to pay for the 2-3 week transition school. The ASWOC didn’t want me until I had been through the school.

    The Navy’s solution? rather than TAD me to the transition school (2-3 weeks) they sent me through the RAG (replacement air group) school at Jacksonville, Florida. That is a 12-week school for new aircrew, sort of a bootcamp for aircrew. I spent 12 wonderful weeks at Jax, drawing full per diem since I was sent TAD.

    On the way back to Brunswick, the ASWOC decided I should also attend the ASWOC school at Dam Neck, Virginia. So….. another 12 weeks at full per diem.

    Now, for some reason, the Navy felt it was more effective to spend outrageous amounts of money to send me through the RAG and ASWOC school, rather than just keep me in Brunswick and send me to the 2-3 week refresher course and then OJT at the ASWOC, as most folks did it.

    Don’t get me wrong: I enjoyed JAX in the spring and early summer, especially drawing extra pay and living off base. But still…..

  9. Daniel says:

    We were reviewing denied retro-active CAB applications to determine if they were sufficient for resubmission.

    One of the denied applications had the comment “Purple Heart Citation not specific enough”.

    I made sure that one went back to the BDE CDR that day.

  10. JAGC says:

    I looked up my 2-1 once, and they had removed my education and replaced it with a masters degree from the university of pheonix and my MOS was changed to field artillery. My name and address were correct. I couldn’t review the rest of the document because it looked like after a dog chewed on it for awhile, they backed over it a few times with the car before scanning it in. The clerk told me that I must have handled my file wrong.

  11. Stacy0311 says:

    Does this qualify? After the first Gulf War (it was in all the papers, look it up) I decided to ship over for another 4. I wanted a little time away from the grunts so I decided to Security Forces. Monitors from HQMC were doing the nationwide tour so it was a one stop process. After being screened for recruiter and drill instructor (passed over, too many NJPs. thank you Jesus) I got accepted for MCSF. You could request duty prferences, so I asked for MB Bermuda, MB London and MB Sicily. 60 days later I got orders to Millington TN to reclass as an aircrew survival systems tech. Seems the Marine Corps needed those so the Career Jammer at BN, forged my name on multiple documents. It took me over a month to get that fixed. When I finally got to MCSF I was told they had no openings at the barracks I requested so I got sea duty instead. And of course the class AFTER me all went to Sicily, London and Bermuda…..

  12. SJ says:

    While in Korea, got selected to attend Armed Forces Staff College in Norfolk…a sweet deal…gentleman’s course. About 2 weeks later got orders changing that to Command and General Staff College at Leavenworth…not a gentleman’s course. I called Branch to ask why? Answer was that Kansas is closer to Korea than Norfolk. Really.

    Later found out the real reason was that some of the Detailer’s buds at the Pentagon lobbied him to bump some of us from Norfolk to Leavenworth so that they could road-run from the MDW area and not move their families.

  13. obsidian says:

    I turned 19 in the Marines and promptly got a notice stating I was drafted into the US Army because at 18 I had failed to report to the selective service board.
    At 18 I was a Marine as I was at 17 so Mom called them and told them I’d show up after the Marines were done with me at 21.

  14. Gunny says:

    @2…….I can beat ya’ Doc.

    I received my draft notice forwarded from my loving family while I was in boot camp. My drill instructors had a good time convincing me of my error in “are you trying to desert and join the Army you broke dick piece of shit maggot?”

    Funny looking back……not at the time. I still made PFC out of boot.

    Semper Fi

  15. TrapperFrank says:

    While serving in Afghanistan, I had a platoon of Afghan National Army and a Afghan Personal Security Detachment attached to my unit. Well, to make a long story short, the weather turned cold and the Afghan PSD needed warm socks. We truged to the nearest village and bought $20 in socks and used my operations fund to pay for it. Big mistake, 6 weeks later, I was rotating out of Afghansitan. It came time to clear the op fund and the receipt for the socks became a major issue. The auditor wouldn’t approve it because socks could be obtained through normal supply channels. My response was the PSD needed socks then, not 6 weeks later. After spending the better part of a two days getting waivers, exception to policy letters, waiting for the approving authorities to come back from the PX/gym/chow etc. I went to the auditor and pulled a $20 bill out of my wallet put it on his desk and walked out. Never heard about the issue of the socks again.

  16. O-4E says:

    Back in early 2001 one of my fellow LTs at Drum applied for the NYPD, was selected and asked to REFRAD from the Army 3 months early in order to make his police academy date.

    Mind you that his was a non-scholarship ROTC officer meaning he only had a 3 year commitment to the Army that was due to expire in 3 months anyways.

    In typical Army fashion the request glacially made its way through channels. It was less than 2 weeks before the Academy start date and no word about his request. We all figured he was screwed.

    His dad (a big wig business type in NYC) was selected to ring the bell at the NY Stock Exchange and my buddy went on leave for a few days and went with him.

    The following Monday morning (1 week before the Academy start date) all of the LTs were eating breakfast together and my buddy tells us this story.

    After his dad had rung the bell they went to the office of one of the heads of the NYSE for coffee. My buddy tells this guy about his issue and the guys says “I’ll give my roommate from West Point a call; you might know him…Eric Shinseki”

    We all laughed and figured this was a BS story. Anyways, come Wednesday my buddy and the BN Commander got called to come see the Division Commander. The Division Commander tells him “Son…you are out of here on Friday; my staff has called every place you need to out-process and they are expecting you. If you have any problems tell them to call my office. Good luck at the police academy”

    So my buddy was out of there, 2 days later, on Friday and started the Academy on Monday.

    Fast forward 6 months…and he received a commendation for bravery on 9-11 for his actions at the Twin Towers.

  17. In July of 1971, while I was serving with the 101st Airborne in the old Republic of Viet Nam, my beloved United States Army made a BIG mistake – – – in MY favor!

    A normal tour of duty in Viet Nam was one year.

    If you volunteered to extend your tour of duty for an additional six months, the Army would fly you, round trip, anywhere in the Free World, for thirty days free leave.

    I did it twice, the first time choosing to go home for Christmas.

    When I told my folks about the benefit of extending my tour of duty, Mama said if she could do that, she’d go to the Holy Land.

    So, when I returned to Viet Nam, I told them to sign me up for ANOTHER six months, and send me to Israel!

    Well, when it came time for me to go, the Army gave me a ticket from Saigon to Tel Aviv, with a return ticket to – – – NEW YORK CITY ! ! !

    Ain’t that something?

    Anyway, instead of spending the whole thirty days in Israel, I opted to stay there for just two weeks, after which, I spent the rest of my leave in the good ol’ U.S. of A.

    When I ran out of money, I was in Portland, Oregon, where I reported into the local Army recruiting station, showed them my identification and leave orders, and they arranged my transportation back to Cam Ranh Bay, Republic of Viet Nam.

    In the process, I had completely circumnavigated the globe, starting in Saigon and ending in Cam Ranh Bay!

    Ain’t that nifty?

  18. Quite a few years ago, the Disabled American Veterans in Salt Lake City, Utah decorated me in a public ceremony.

    Actually, they were replacing the medals I’d lost when I got divorced (but which my ex-wife eventually returned, having been pressured by Church leaders).

    As a result of service in the Republic of Korea, I had been one of the last group of soldiers to be awarded the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, and it was duly noted on my DD-214.

    But, when the DAV obtained my replacements, instead of the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, which was missing, I was being given the Armed Forces Reserve Medal, even though I’d never been in the Army Reserve.

    Well, I looked up the regulations and eventually realized that my VERY brief stint in the Utah National Guard was apparently what qualified me for that medal.

    Last night, I once again researched the qualifications for the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, and there’s no mistake – – – I’m definitely within that time frame.

    Anyway, since those days, they’ve come out with the Korea Defense Service Medal.

    So, it’s all mox nix.

    I’ve got what I’ve got, and that’s that.

    Shucks, I ain’t no hero, and I never expected I’d ever get ANY medals!

  19. Actually, I was never supposed to be in the Army.

    I only had that opportunity because there was still a draft, and Viet Nam was a very unpopular and controversial war.

    During my youth, my parents could not control me, so the juvenile court committed me to the state mental hospital, where because I was a typical rebellious adolescent, their solution was to incarcerate me with the criminally insane.

    I spent years isolated in Hell, subjected to electric shock treatments and experimental drugs, and terrorized by fellow inmates, with those same fellow inmates being my only association, thus twisting and influencing my developing mind.

    So, when I eventually was released, as an adult, I had no education, trade, or skills, and I looked just like that character in the movie, “SLING BLADE”.

    What saved me was becoming a convert in The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints, where some of the young men physically took me by the hand and literally showed me how to walk like a normal human being and talk in a normal tone of voice.

    I had already tried twice to enlist in the United States Marine Corps.

    So, I wrote a letter to President Lyndon Baines Johnson, requesting that I be reclassified by the Selective Service System, as so many other guys were burning their draft cards or going to Canada, with some even deserting the Armed Forces to go to Sweden.

    After several months, I was reclassified, and promptly began processing for enlistment in the United States Marine Corps.

    But, alas, thirty minutes before I was to be sworn in, the officer in charge denied my enlistment.

    So, I went to the Navy, but there was a long waiting list.

    I went to the Air Force, but there was a long waiting list.

    I went to the Army, and the sergeant said “No”, in spite of my newly acquired eligibility.

    Finally, I went to the local Draft Board and volunteered to be drafted, which automatically put me at the head of the list, and which automatically put me in the United States Army (because the Army, as the senior service, gets the first pick during a draft).

    And THAT was how I overcame all of the obstacles to become a soldier in my beloved United States Army!

    By the way, although I thought I was the ONLY person with a story like this, since leaving the Army, I’ve met at least four other veterans (two of them Special Forces) with similar experiences.

    Since there’s no longer a draft, I reckon that sort of thing couldn’t happen today.

  20. lurkersteve says:

    My Guard unit was called up in 2004 for Iraq. The end date on the orders was 2027.

  21. Ex-PH2 says:

    I would love to see the draft come back for everyone who has not served his/her country and doesn’t like/is afraid of guns.

    It has something to do with sex and pistols…..;)

  22. USMCE8Ret says:

    One of you Army guys/gals enlighten me:

    I was reassigned to the ARCENT CFLCC G-5 at Camp Doha, Kuwait for a brief spell after the end of “major combat operations” – about July 2003. As a Marine, and not having really served closely with the Army and knowing how they did things, I quickly learned to NEVER leave my key in my room by accident. (It was difficult enough to get a room when I checked in, but my experience was ridiculous).

    So, I accidently leave my key in the room and discovered I had done so earlier that AM. Normally, I’d just ask the barracks manager/billeting honcho to let me in using a master key, but that wasn’t the case. I had to fill out 2 forms, take them to supply, wait for the OIC to sign them, and then take them to the G-4 to wait for another series of signatures. After waiting (and missing almost the whole morning), I was then directed to the ARCENT HQ building to get another signature. After getting a series of about 10 signatures and other endorsements, I had created a full-on file that had to be kept in a folder to keep all of its contents in place. (Of course, I had to walk or hitch a ride to all of these places because they weren’t co-located on base.) Naturally, I objected to all the nonsense, and quickly learned to keep my mouth shut or it would just prolong the process.

    Once I got all the signatures and about 6 more endorsements, I took it back to the billeting guy, and after waiting another 20 minutes, he finally sent someone with me to use the master key to grant me access to my room, which is right where I left it… on the end table next to my rack.

    I discovered I forgot my key at 7:45 that morning. By the time I got into my room, it was 8:45PM and wasted an entire day from my new assignment. I think it was the Army’s way of screwing with me. Fortunately, I was only there for about 6 weeks, and then resumed my duties with my Marine unit and returned to Iraq, but not before not checking out with the Army.

    I still have that key.

  23. SJ says:

    As an LT/CPT I signed Property Books which made me responsible for a zillion dollars worth of equipment plus the lives and welfare of my troopers but (in Mid 60’s) I had to pay a deposit/sign a hand receipt for towels, keys, etc in a BOQ room. Always pissed me off.

  24. I think anybody who spent 20 years or more in the Army or any sub units of it would have enough shit to write book of stupid clerks stuff.
    After 9-11 I re-enlisted for 6 years (around the end of 2002) just because I knew they might need my services.
    We went to Bosnia in 2003 and they told me I was “on stop loss” for a year, but it would expire in the middle of our deployement…so I should re-enlist. I told them I already did and I had the free coffee cup to prove it.
    Well they couldn’t find the paper work, so I re-re-enlisted for 6 years hoping it didn’t mean 12. and I got another free coffee cup.
    while in Bosnia, they told me on was on stop loss and it was going to run out, so if I wanted to make sure I kept getting paid, I should re-enlist. I told them I already did TWICE in the last year. But, to be safe and because I was dealing with retarded clerks, I did it a third time.
    A year later in Iraq, the retention NCO (I think she retained a full size private in weight) told me I might not get paid because my elistment/stoploss etc was up.

    So I did it a fourth time in little over a year…but this time, I had somebody take pictures and had sworn statements signed by all. What a bunch of retards.
    damn I’m glad I retired.

  25. O-4E says:

    @22…similar story on my part…sorta

    So there I was…a Captain at the Officer Advanced Course. Our billets were 2 person suites. We each had our own room and shared a common area which was a small living room, kitchenette and latrine.

    My partner was a meterosexual and spent an ungodly amount of time in the latrine in the morning. So I took my showers at night before bed.

    Anyways, I came back from partying with some foreign Officers about 2200 and took my shower…and locked my key in my room. I called billeting. Turns out they used the MPs to do emergency unlocks after hours.

    So 30 minutes later here shows up a big PFC MP. As I am stranding there naked.

    “Roger dispatch…I have arrived at the room of the naked Captain who has locked himself out of his room”

    Over the radio..nice

    Before he would let me in my room he had to “collect” response data. Which entailed a checklist with about 200 questions and took about 45 minutes.

    Was alcohol involved?
    Have you beaten your wife tonight?
    Have you robbed a gas station tonight?
    What is your shoe size?
    Do you hear voices?

    etc, etc

  26. USMCE8Ret says:

    @25 – Billeting used MP’s to respond to lock-outs? I’ll bet that was efficient. How maddening that must have been.

  27. SJ says:

    @24 Roller Dude. But, dude, you got a lot of coffee cups.

  28. SJ says:

    Roller left off my smile…it was a joke.

  29. Thunderstixx says:

    I was stationed at Ft. Lewis WA in 1977 and attached to the 864’Th Engineers for the purpose of being an instructor at Huckleberry Creek Mountain Training Camp in Mt. Rainier National Park.
    My mother tried to call me one Wednesday from Iowa, CDT zone. When I finally got the message at the headquarters of Huck Creek it was Wed, one week later.
    She told me that she spent literally 6 hours on the phone over 3 days trying to find me.
    I guess that the clerks she was talking to routed her back to Alaska where they told her I had PCS’d several months earlier.
    She finally was able to call me on Friday of the week after she tried to find me !!!
    It also took 2 months to even start to get mail !!!
    It was the best duty anyone could ever have I swear !!!
    Nobody knew where I was or what the hell I was doing !!!|
    That is the best thing you can have in the military !!!

  30. JoekNYC says:

    I was in Iraq in 2005. After being there about 3 months I got a set of orders stating that Fort Bragg Civil Affairs had no record of me taking a M249 class and unless I was willing to certify that I had received the proper training I was ordered to depart Iraq forthwith and report to Fort Bragg. Big Grin!!!!! Now I happened to like my job and my boss and knew that doing this would royally screw the team, so I signed off on that training.

  31. Ex-PH2 says:

    I have only one tale of bureaucratic silliness and woe, and that is from being stationed in Philadelphia, and not getting a paycheck because, as someone told me, payroll did not have my pay records. I got a blank look when I asked ‘Then how come I’ve been getting paid for the past six months?’ Then the guy who distributed the mail went on strike because the same thing happened to him on the same day, so I joined him. Our pay records were found that afternoon.

  32. 68W58 says:

    On my second mobilization I went over (what was at that time) the 24 month mobilization limit (within a 5 year period) which entitled me to an extra $1000 a month. So I go to the one shop to see what I need to do to receive this and he just says “you’re not getting it”. Never looked up the reg or asked for help, just figured I would let a grand extra a month go. I eventually did get the money, but man do I sometimes hate the one shop.

  33. 68W58 says:

    Oh-and it took 6 years for me to finally get the CMB I earned on that deployment.

  34. CC Senor says:

    After my first tour in RVN I wound up at FT Meade in a CC&S company (think Army junk yard) with no real mission. Almost the entire company had just returned from VN or Korea, had between 91 and 180 days to ETS, and a home of record in one of the mid Atlantic states. We had a lot of NCOs with nothing to do so we ended up honchoing post details. That got old quick and things didn’t improve when MLK got assassinated. My only re-enlistment option was present duty assignment and that was out of the question. Finally told the battalion retention NCO if he got me orders sending me back to the 1st ID I sign up for another six. Done and Done.

    My PCS orders had a reporting date at Oakland that was 8 days after my ETS date. Good thing no one noticed because my re-enlistment packet had vanished into that great round file in the sky when I out processed from Meade. Wondered later if it was an honest mistake or a disgruntled clerk with a hard on for the Army generally and NCOs specifically.

    A couple of months later in the 1st ID I got notified to report to the division re-enlistment office ASAP. There I was told I had to re-enlist immediately because I was in country illegally. When I told them I had re-upped at Meade they said there was no record. Told them to check with finance because I had gotten a bonus. Finance was right next door and finance has better checks and balances so the matter got resolved fairly quickly and I went back to work.

    About five years later I got a letter from DA wanting copies of my re-enlistment orders, which I didn’t have. It got to be about as bad as being dunned for a bill because they never let up until I re-enlisted again at my regular ETS.

  35. Alberich says:

    A little thing maybe –

    I started as a National Guard officer. During my first year, I signed up for a Combat Lifesaver course at the local armory, which I ended up not taking. They generated the “completion” form anyway and stuck it in my OMPF. I didn’t notice or think about it.

    Fast-forward six years. I’m active duty, I’m up for promotion. My board file includes this certificate for training I didn’t take, which I haven’t thought about in years. So of course I want it removed before the board meets. After a lot of back-and-forth my boards officer learns that only *one* agency can remove the certificate – the Army Board for Correction of Military Records (ABCMR). So, I petition them, and my petition includes an oath that everything I assert is true. I ask them to remove the thing because I didn’t take the training.

    Their response? They refuse. Why? Because I didn’t provide “sufficient documentation” that I didn’t take the training. (Think about it. There was surely a sign-in roster for the people who were there, so why not another roster for all the people who weren’t…?)

    (Happy ending: I resubmitted my application, and this time added an affidavit from myself saying that I didn’t take the training. The affidavit apparently counted as “documentation” the way my sworn application did not…)

  36. NHSparky says:

    Imagine re-enlisting, then being told you weren’t going to get an SRB check because Big Navy doesn’t know what day I joined the Navy.

    It got resolved pretty quickly when the command told DC that I wasn’t going to be on the boat for long unless and until the issue was fixed (first and only time I ever saw a command go to bat for someone like that.)

  37. Mustang says:

    In 2004 I was stationed in Okinawa and was selected for an Individual Augment billet to Iraq. I had to travel to CENTCOM in Tampa first for processing though. I spent 4 days in Tampa then got on a plane to Iraq. A month later I get a call from the G-1 at CENTCOM asking me where I’ve been for the last month. I laugh, reminding the Sgt that he called me at the MNC-I HQ in Baghdad and asked him where he thinks I’ve been. Seemed rather funny until he told me that I had been declared a deserter.

    Turns out that the G-1 had somehow “forgotten” that they put me on a plane to Baghdad a month prior.

  38. Scubasteve says:

    #33, I have the same issue with my retroactive CAB. I submitted the paperwork, again, in 2009, after paying out of pocket to travel to my old unit and pick up the paperwork, only to find out some names had not been included (everyone who PCS’ed after redeployment). It was kicked back by the 1st GO in the chain of command (the approval authority), with the following reason: “this packet definitely meets the criteria, however, the CSM letter of recommendation needs to have the exact date of the incident.” So, I recontacted the CSM, fixed the letter and sent it back for his signature. He promptly responded, and I had the whole packet resubmitted within a month. Six months later, I called the S1 to find out the status. They told me it had been sent back because I needed to have a date fixed on it. When I explained that I had done that, and had resubmitted it, they said “Oh.” Greatest answer ever! So I resubmitted another copy so they would have it on file. It gets kicked back by BDE because they said it had to be submitted through the wartime unit. I did some research, and found the ALARACT saying it can be submitted through my current chain of command, and I resubmitted the packet (now with my third CO’s endorsement) along with the ALARACT, and now, it’s still at the BDE and nobody seems to know what to do next. Even though the original went all the way up and just needed a clarification on the date. I’m going on almost nine years from the original incident.

  39. USMCBRIT1 says:

    @25-O4E- Those questions asked by the MP were absolutely necessary. After all, you were an officer (Arf, Arf)