First female engineer soldier AWOL

| February 4, 2016


Back in July, the media and the Army celebrated Erika Lopez, from Tennessee, when she enlisted to be the first woman to become a combat engineer.

[Knoxville Army recruiter] Sgt. 1st Class Charles Ellis [said] “She was very excited about it she said ‘Hey that’s what I want to do’. She came into the army to better herself and set the example for her family.”

Sgt. Ellis knew her decision was unique, but for Erika, the magnitude of it didn’t set in until later. “It makes me feel really excited that no woman has ever done it before.”

Lopez was a mother of two boys, one was born when she was 16 years old. She shipped in September, and went to basic training, but she must have somehow injured herself during training, because she was on convalescent leave by the end of the year. According to the updated story, sent to us by Bobo, she was supposed to report back from leave on January 4th, but she was a no-show.

Spokesperson Tiffany Wood issued a statement saying, “After 30 days in an AWOL status, a Soldier is considered a deserter and a
federal warrant is issued for his or her arrest. ”

Wood says once Private Erika Lopez is arrested she’ll be taken to the nearest military installment and handed over to military police.

So, she’ll be a deserter in the morning. Another historical moment for the social justice warriors.

Category: Army News

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  1. sj says:

    Re the picture: someone hasn’t done much PT but a lot of DFAC.

  2. Bobo says:

    If she can’t make it through basic without seeing her husband and kids, I’m sure that she’d be a huge asset on day 300 on 400 day orders to Afghanistan, or month 2 in Sapper school.

    • Newbie says:

      Bobo: So it is alright that only men are allowed to miss seeing their wives and kids (or their Mommy and Daddy) while they are in Basic Training and AIT?

      • Silentium Est Aureum says:

        Histrionics much? Nobody said she isn’t allowed to miss her family. We all do.

        But we also have a job to do, and then there’s that whole pesky little UCMJ thingy….

      • Skippy says:

        If you can’t hack doing your job maybe you shouldn’t be doing it ????

  3. The Commentor' Formerly Known as MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

    Holy bandoliers and bazookas Bat Man, she has quite the rack!

    Maybe she is working at a swanky strip club pulling down 5 times her military salary!

    • Bobo says:

      Yeah, I am waiting to hear some of our regulars comment on that. You know, the ones with even less tact than an MMCM.

      • The Commentor' Formerly Known as MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

        Hey, I don’t write these stories!

        I just comment on them.

        BTW: It is NOT an issue of relative TACT, it is proper use of measured sarcasism sprinkled with a degree of truth and topped off with good ‘ole Irish humor.

        But what do I know …

      • OldManchu says:

        Of course you are waiting so you can show us all how righteous you are….

        Get over yourself and get back to wanking! You aren’t fooling anyone with your diversion.

      • 2/17 Air Cav says:

        She appears to be cute and have nice tits. Is that what you mean, Bobo?

    • Newbie says:

      Commentator: So I take it that you agree all buffed men work as Male Strippers at those swanky strip clibs as well?

  4. Lowering standards has never, ever improved anything. The sorry assed Social Justice Warriors are hell bent on destroying the quality of our military, as they have done with our education system.


      What does lowering the slandered have to do with this story. She didn’t Evan make out of boot to go to here Engineers school and then to Combat Engineer school so she had a long way to go to get to the Combat Engineer thing.So she is just AWOL boot camper not an Engineer yet.

    • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

      I wonder just how soon after she gets hauled in she’ll go bawling for attention from the SJW media liberals about *SOB!*, how MEAN and SEXIST that training was because she didn’t have a teddy bear, a hug, and a feel-good trophy issued to her every night TO MAKE THINGS FAIR!?

    • Kristina says:

      I guess you didnt hear about the female Lt that was of the 1st 2 females to complete Ranger school and how she carried her male counterparts backpack because he was falling behind and none of the male soldiers could do it – he said he wouldnt have graduated if it were not for her! And she was a tiny little thing! Letting women do male jobs is NOT lowering standards! While I do not agree on females in combat because I think it would bring un-needed feelings and issues to the front-lines. If they can do the job than let them do it – being a female is NOT what makes a person un-qualified!!!

      • Skippy says:

        Kristina. Who hasn’t do you have any idea who you are talking to maybe if you did you wouldn’t post your stupid comment. And how about all train to the same standard and not two.. Your calling out someone who has defended the two
        Females that went through ranger me out because I think they didn’t
        Pass without a lot of corners be cut.. Please take the time and

        Just sayin

  5. Skippy says:

    Well so does this mean the Army Didn’t lower the standard to make this happen????
    also of note if she is popping them out at 15-16 years of age and now has two at 22-23
    years of age maybe her thinking cap is missing a few screws


      They can’t blame on the standard,because she didn’t make out of boot to start her Engineer training pipe line. So standards didn’t have anything to do with anything she is just an AWOL boot. The media and everyone else making mountains out of mole hills.

      • Skippy says:

        was she at OUST or basic ????
        that I don’t know and you have a good point if it was basic from the sounds of it she was barely in the door before the injury, I would think with two kids at her age they would even let her in the MOS. it’s sounds like the shit hammer is going to fall on the Recruiting people.

        • NECCSEABEECPO says:

          I don’t get that either how did she get in with kids. I had to kick two troops out because they could not get what we call a parent plan. Don’t know what the Army calls it but if you don’t have one your out. By the way bit was one Male and one female.

          • Bobo says:

            The Army calls it a Family Care Plan, and I’m guessing that her’s was relatively simple – daddy will take care of the kids.

            • Skippy says:

              good point I know from being trapped in recruiting before my retirement
              two was the limit, anymore and it was the door. I had a issue with it when I magically was given custody of one of my older kids.

            • NECCSEABEECPO says:

              My bad that’s what we call it could not remember. I had to get all my single parent troops to fill that shit out all the time and admin were ass holes about it.

        • 19D2OR4-Smitty says:


      • Grimmy says:


        You’re shooting wrong target. The standard was lowered by allowing her entry to the field in the first place.

        There’s no way in hell she’d be able to do much of the work on a physical level, so she’d have to be set up as a chump sump. Doing all the simple and light things so her male compatriots could load up that much more on the heavy and hard things.

        That young woman was set up to fail and she’s too young and naive to know she’s nothing more than a disposable game piece used by utopianist filth and their useful idiot allies. The very same mindset types that brought us such delights and mass murderous nazism, mass murderous communism, mass murderous eugenics and all the other mass grave filling games played.

        SJWs Always Lie

        • NECCSEABEECPO says:

          Good point. They should take a proven 12C and see if she can make it and not tell anyone until finished that’s part of the problem is they are advertising it and by doing so advertise failure.

        • Kristina says:

          I am just copying and pasting my comment from above so you dont have to rack your feeble minded brain looking for it. When I was in the Army I could run 2 mile in 15 minutes and some odd seconds I could do 85 sit-ups and 90 odd push-ups in the 2 minutes. I was petite and could hang with my male counter parts – sometimes it is mind over matter. Anyhow here is my comment:

          I guess you didnt hear about the female Lt that was of the 1st 2 females to complete Ranger school and how she carried her male counterparts backpack because he was falling behind and none of the male soldiers could physically do it – he said he wouldnt have graduated if it were not for her! And she was a tiny little thing! Letting women do male jobs is NOT lowering standards! While I do not agree on females in combat because I think it would bring un-needed feelings and issues to the front-lines. If they can do the job than let them do it – being a female is NOT what makes a person un-qualified!!!

          • Skippy says:

            I’m calling Bullshit….
            Prove it and prove that you did it to standard

            • jonp says:

              You ain’t the only one throwing the flag. 85 male sit ups and 90 male push ups not the knees on the ground ones. Can’t say i’m on board with that claim. As for running 2 7.5min miles. meh…I hope you could.

          • NECCSEABEECPO says:

            Shut the HELL up….. Who are you did you do it NO so shut the Pie hole.. I have seen women do good things down range and have seen FET teams work. Can a women do male task and make the score maybe but can they do it all the time and that is what Direct Combat guys do. Try running OPS every night 365 a year. Go out on a OP RTB to base then back out on another one that is what Rangers 75th, SEALS and SAS were doing in Iraq and some of them had hard times. The problem is anyone can set their mind to something and do it but doing one time maybe two is not all the time what these guy’s do is a life style.

            The only reason a women would want to try is to make a point and Combat is not the time or place to make a point. To do this type of shit you have to want to do it all the time and not just do it to say you did it. Disclaimer I am a Direct Combat support guy and have worked with a lot of SOF units and Marines also with Combat Engineers.

    • Newbie says:

      Skippy, so if a young man has children at the age of 16, are you saying he should not be joining the military as well?

      • Skippy says:

        Anyone making choices like this should be looked at with more detail Male or female I’ve seen it dequal more males then a female with one child

      • Hack Stone says:

        Having been on Rwcruiting Duty, having defendants automatically required ASVAB scores. Back when I was doing it, applicants had to score a minimum AFQT of 31. If they had a defendant, it was a minimum AFQT of 50. And then that would require a waiver. If the Marine Corps were to accept someone with three dependents (spouse and two children), they would need to score way above that AFQT of 50, go into a critically needed MOS, and have absolutely no other issues (no HS diploma, traffic tickets, drug/alcahol usage). Current entry level pay for an E1 with less than four months of services is $1450 a month. How are you going to support four people on $1450 a month? Plus the Army is now having to pay benefits to move an entry level soldier with no skills benefits for three dependents? Who the hell thought that it would be a good idea to use this young mother up as a shining example of gender equality?

  6. BoomerSooner_OU says:

    This may be part of the Social Justice Warrior plan, just a thought. I wouldn’t doubt if she eventually shows up with a story about how she was injured in boot camp and faced constant threats by peers and commanders. Claims of death or injury if she returned will be cited as a reason she went AWOL. SJW will demand a full investigation, etc.

  7. IDC SARC says:

    I’d hit it.

  8. Ex-PH2 says:

    Did she think it would be easy? This is strange.

    • Hondo says:

      Apparently she did.

      And no, it’s not particularly strange. Young troops going extended AWOL or deserting happens regrettably often, in all MOSs. It’s only news in this case because the media made such a fuss over her being the “first” and held her up as some type of exemplar.

      Well, now she’s a double first – and still an exemplar. Just not the exemplar the media wanted.

      • Bobo says:

        That is why, in my day, you were put on medical hold at basic and not sent home and expected to return.

      • NECCSEABEECPO says:

        Hondo I don’t think she is the first and I believe they already have some that went through Sapper. Also the Marines already have some and I know us Seabees aren’t full on Combat Engineers but we have woman that have been in combat spots and do fill some gaps and did well. So yes it is the Media making mountains out of mole hills

      • Poetrooper says:

        Hondo, let’s face it, the media didn’t make such a fuss of her, the recruiters did by giving the media a heads up that they had a hot looking mama who was going into an all-male career field. We both know if the recruit had more resembled that female recruiter, we’d never have heard a peep.

        And of course you know the recruiters had to love having pictures of her to spread around, showing young male recruits what they could end up serving beside. A pretty girl with big tits, married or not, is a very effective selling tool, especially when your market is testosterone-fueled young men.

        She may be a deserter but the kid was used by those recruiters.

  9. Silentium Est Aureum says:

    And how the hell did she get in with 3 dependents? Yes, in these circumstances, hubby is considered a dependent.

    I know that a single parent with two kids would be politely shown the door.

    Maybe she was just pissed about Jody nailing her hubby?

  10. rb325th says:

    Male and Females go AWOL from Basic all the damned time. They go AWOL from their Permanent Duty assignments too.
    Whatever her issues were that made her decide to go AWOL, it is not a loss for the Army… It is ironic that the 1st female recruit to enlist in combat arms went AWOL though. Not a stellar start.

    • 19D2OR4-Smitty says:

      Shes not the first female in combat arms. Just the first to try for Combat Engineer. The Army graduated several 13B females back in Sept or Oct. Plus all of the females the USMC has been putting through ITB for the past couple years.

      • NECCSEABEECPO says:

        There are woman already doing these roles. I worked with a Female LT that was leading a rout Clarence team in AFG. being help fill some of there gaps and we had woman also and don’t give two shits they are with us and they will work with us and did.

        The big issue is the Media made it a big deal because she was the first to sign up and was not in the Army yet.

        • 19D2OR4-Smitty says:

          There are and have been women filling those duty positions yes. But being tasked to do something and volunteering for the MOS and actually being trained to do it is something else entirely.

          • NECCSEABEECPO says:

            The female had a Sapper tab because that is all my guys talked about. I do understand what it takes to be a Combat Engineer because we fill their gaps all the time. The big difference in their job and what we do is they are classified for maneuver and breaching but we can do some of those gaps also just not classified so I get what you are saying. Its the Media thing

            • NECCSEABEECPO says:

              By the way it is being trained to fill those gaps so the commander can use ass needed no volunteer shit there.

              • PFM says:

                Chief your guys are also pretty much general purpose do-all…a lot of stuff you do is split off to Heavy Engineer companies in the Green machine.

            • 19D2OR4-Smitty says:

              The maneuver and breaching is what I am talking about. No offense to SEABEES, but you are not Combat Engineers. Also, anyone can go through Sapper School, just as anyone can go through Ranger School.

              • NECCSEABEECPO says:

                I didn’t say we were combat Engineers but we fill there gaps in combat that is a fact period. Also they have moved engineers under OPCON in theater and are doing the joint mission all the time the two are margining together. WE also have route clearance capabilities for ourselves so we didn’t have to bog them down and that is why we fill those gaps. Your right I was just saying she was in charge of the clearance team and believe me you guy’s can breach all you want have fun at it.

                • NECCSEABEECPO says:

                  I’m withb you smitty. I just get pissed when people tyr to say we don’t see Comabt or do Comabt shit. The Comabt Enginners in Iraq we built bridges with didn’t tell us we can’t do that because we were not Combat Engineers. We are a little different because we have to support are self’s that is why commanders use and we are dame good at it.

                  • NECCSEABEECPO says:

                    Sorry typos and fat fingers spell check.

                    • 19D2OR4-Smitty says:

                      I’m definitely not saying SEABEES arent BAMFs. Just not CE. Specifically because of the manuever element of CE. Also, breaching is loads of fun. You dunno what you are missing :p

  11. The Commentor' Formerly Known as MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

    What is the deal with the Soldier to the left of her wearing the ACU patterned field tent?

    I get so confused with Army stuff …

    • IDC SARC says:

      Somebody already hit it, I believe.

    • Hondo says:

      Noticed that too, eh? Neither of the soldiers pictured above exactly appears to be a “lean, mean fighting machine”. (The lady may have a valid excuse due to her gender, though – e.g., she may be expecting.)

      I’m not a “lean, mean fighting machine” by any means either. But then again, I’m not on active duty and don’t waltz around in my old uniform, either.

      • L. Taylor says:

        So you are overweight and are complaining about an active duty pregnant soldier who looks overweight in her maternity uniform?

        Stay classy, Hondo.

        • The Other Whitey says:

          Way to miss the point, dumbass.

          Stay retarded, Lars.

          • L. Taylor says:

            I did not miss the point.

            She is pregnant. She is not regarded as overweight by Amy standards.

            You acted like an ass about it. While admitting that you are overweight yourself.

            Your excuse is that you are not currently serving.

            Her excuse? She does not need a fucking excuse because she is not overweight; she is pregnant.

            • 68W58 says:

              Everyone’s equal in il they aren’t huh Lars. She can’t meet the service obligation of deploying right now because she is pregnant, so someone else gets to pick up the slack. But if the service recognizes that females have a potentially disqualifying condition and make policy based on that, then-according to your own reasoning on another thread-we are not treating everyone equally. Ain’t that some shit?

              • 68W58 says:

                “Everyone’s equal until they aren’t…

              • L. Taylor says:

                There are a great many reasons why someone becomes non-deployable. A woman being pregnant is one.

                Not all are gender specific.

                • Lars' Flaming Mangina says:

                  I hurt my taint to keep me from going to the latest Bezerkley Feminists sit-in at the student center yesterday… but it left me plenty of time to go watch my favorite movie “The Crying Game”

                • 68W58 says:

                  Yes, but that one is entirely “gender specific” which gives the lie to your whole “equality uber alles” argument.

                  The way you purposefully miss the point again and again is a thing of beauty in its own perverse way.

              • Newbie says:

                68W58: I also am sure that one does not pass the PT test, is overweight, has a substance abuse, cannot take care of their family life they are or have a medical condition, they are considered nondeplyable as well. Male or Female.

            • The Other Whitey says:

              I didn’t admit anything Lars. In fact, I never said a thing about the gal on the right, weight or otherwise. Are you confusing me with somebody else because you suck at paying attention, or did you just make that shit up (again)?

            • Hondo says:

              Actually, you did miss the point, dipstick. Or perhaps intentionally misrepresented it.

              Here’s the pertinent part of my comment that you omitted, likely intentionally: “(The lady may have a valid excuse due to her gender, though – e.g., she may be expecting.)”

              So, as I already said above: IF she’s expecting (and unless you know her personally, neither you nor I know for a fact whether she is or not), she is exempted from Army height/weight standards. She is still not in compliance, but has a valid temporary medical reason for non-compliance. (If I recall correctly the pregnancy exemption to Army height/weight standards begins on medical determination of pregnancy and extends through either 3 or 6 months post-birth; I’d have to look it up to be sure. And, frankly, looking it up is not something I find worth my time and effort at present. You wanna know, go look it up yourself.)

              Personnel who are no longer serving are no longer required to meet Army height/weight standards. Personnel currently serving, whether in the Active or Reserve Components, are – unless medically exempted. You do know that comparing apples and oranges is invalid, right?

              Any more public factual or logical errors you want to make today, Berkeley-boi? You’re running up quite a tab on that account.

            • OldManchu says:

              Lars you’re just jealous because you can’t get pregnant no matter how many times you take it deep in your ass.

            • Lars' Flaming Mangina says:

              Shut the fuck up Lars and go take a Midol for your cramps…

        • JACK SHIT says:

          You don’t know me, Lars Taylor.

    • Skippy says:

      the Bun is in the oven 🙂
      talk about day and night difference

      • Atkron says:

        Who in the FUCK did that Captain have to pay to inseminate her?

        • IDC SARC says:

          I may or may not have done the preinsemination VAGREP.

          • The Other Whitey says:

            You’d hit a Schlage deadbolt if the keyhole was on your side!

          • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

            IDC SARC, I bet you’d “tag” a high school Lunch Lady even without any adult beverage consumption beforehand!

            • 2/17 Air Cav says:

              And you’d do the crack of dawn, if you could.

            • IDC SARC says:

              I actually dated an elementary school lunch lady. lol

              • IDC SARC says:

                Anybody here familiar with the chow hall girl known as the Margarita Monster?

                (circa Camp Pendleton mid-late 90s)

                • Just An Old Dog says:

                  I was in Margarita with 3/4 from 95 to 98. I remember that name, but it was liberally applied to pretty much any chick who worked there. There were a couple of Rachets who worked in the Subway they put in the E club as well.

                  • IDC SARC says:

                    The margarita monster was a dwarf with other major problems that worked at the chow hall that would sit and take money while perpetually sucking her sausage like fingers and slobbering all over her area. It was quite disturbing and one would strive to be sure to have exact change to avoid dealing with her secretions.

                    • Just An Old Dog says:

                      Oh Snap!!!v Now I remember her!!! Yes, poor thing looked like something from a reality show. Like Gollum with tits.

        • Newbie says:

          Atkron: What does the CPT have anything to do with thi Blog? And if you are a guy with a pregnant wife/woman, how would you feel if someone made that comment about you?

          • IDC SARC says:

            You can call me names…oh yeah

          • Skippy says:

            How about being on the thread making your comments when people are on here newbie ???

            • Newbie says:

              Skippy, I did. Because I’m new, it took a while for my comments to be posted (that is what the ROE states).

              • Skippy says:

                good copy welcome to TAH. a big chuck of us are combat vets, Civis,
                prior service no deployments you name it,
                someone up top left a comment
                bashing someone who has been a big supporter of the two females that went through ranger school, don’t think they understood. how much he was behind it… but it’s all good, we are critiquing this individual. for washing out and not having the mental toughness to hang in there. but as you can see we also congratulated another individual for passing
                as you may know when you get a group of service members together the
                opinions and the language is at times rough. so again welcome

    • Claw says:

      I’m betting the female Captain in the picture is the Recruiting Company Commander.

    • PFM says:

      That is the Maternity uniform – GP Medium.

  12. Carlton G Long says:

    Another attention wh*re … though more attractive than most of them, obviously (I would hit it but would leave a pseudonym and a six-digit phone number)

    • IDC SARC says:

      I volunteer to do the confinement physical.

    • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

      IF she made it through Basic & AIT and then deployed, she’d have platoons of line doggies “hound dogging” her before even a month in country and that’s ONLY IF she didn’t suddenly get pregnant as soon as her unit got the Warning Order for deployment like a number of females in the Military do!

      • PFM says:

        The officers would be on that long before then…

      • Newbie says:

        API: So, do you think male soldiers would have a platoon of line doggies hounding them as well as soon as they finish impregnating their wives or girlfriends?

        • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

          WTF, OVER? IMHO I don’t think you’ve ever been deployed to the Middle East, let alone served overseas.

  13. Dragoon3 says:

    There should be a correction… She never completed training… She is the first woman to “enlist” as combat engineer. She never earned the title!!!!

  14. OldManchu says:

    Yeah she thought it would be easy as well as “cool”, not that being a veteran is cool.

    Maybe she realized she left dinner in the oven and split just to go check on it. Then realized the laundry had piled up so she stayed around to do that. Maybe she’s not actually AWOL? Maybe she fast tracked straight to Ranger School or even RASP?

  15. 19D2OR4-Smitty says:

    A leave return date of Jan 4 sounds much more like she was on Christmas Exodus than Con Leave. Just sayin.

  16. Ranger11bv says:

    Women wanted equality… HERE IT IS!

    • Pinto Nag says:

      The women that actually DO want equality don’t end up AWOL. They get up each day, do their f*cking jobs, and don’t get their mugs in the paper. THAT is equality.

      • David says:

        Fella once said “Negroes will achieve true equality when they are allowed to succeed or fall flat on their faces just like anyone else.” No support, no special dispensation, no props…if you fail, look in the mirror. (came from “The Seersucker Whipsaw”, an entertaining novel.)

        Think that applies here, too – she was free to try, and free to fail Shit happens. That is equality.

      • jonp says:

        Amen. They also don’t get pregnant while on active duty so they can’t deploy and do their job. If she got pregnant she should have been booted. Now Uncle Sugar gets to pay for everything. I told my daughter if she ever got pregnant while in uniform intentionally I would never let her in the house again

  17. Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

    Pregnant at 15/16, popped out a second kid and a husband at home…did anyone stop to think this might not be a good fit?

    I’m not suggesting that a baby having a baby can’t turn their life around and get their shit together and go on to a very bright future. But it’s a situation that’s more than a little sketchy in terms of separation from those loved ones. I would think the military would take more precautions before wasting their time training someone with a very high risk for failure.

    Why waste the resources? Was is just to satisfy some numbskull idea about the first woman whatever?

    Before you show off your shiny new prodigies moving forward, maybe it’s wise to wait a minute or two and make sure they really are a prodigy and not just an idiot savant.

    • UpNorth says:

      “Was is just to satisfy some numbskull idea about the first woman whatever?”. Why, yes, now that you ask, I believe that was the whole idea.

    • Poetrooper says:

      VoV, see my response to Hondo above. She was a fool tool used by recruiters for free publicity and as a recruiting tool for horny young males.

      Do you suppose she actually walked in that station wanting to be a combat engineer or did that SFC plant the idea in her head when he saw how photogenic she was because of her pretty face and hot body?

      I say again, the kid got played.

    • Newbie says:

      VOV, so if it was a young man that got a young girl pregnant twice at that age and have a wife at home, do you think that is a good fit? Perhaps by letting that young man join at a later age would be wasting the military’s time and be a waste of resource?

      • Hack Stone says:

        Yes, it would be a waste of training resources. When I was a young Marine going through Electrinics School, we had a few Marines that married their high school sweethearts (sometimes while home on leave from Recruit Training). Of course, they could not live without the love of their life, so they would bring their lovely young bride to beautiful sunny Southern California, that being Twentynine Palms CA. It doesn’t take long for these young spouses to realize that not all of California is not beach front property, and despite how important they feel that they are, their husbands had military obligations precluding them from spending 24/7 making babies with their wives. In a few months, the Marine has a trail of bounced checks all over the upper desert, a few charges of Inauthorized Absence when he he decides it would be better to spend six days with his wife rather than attending his classes, and maybe one or two charges of domestic abuse. In my 22 year career, I saw only one successful career/marriage of a Marine that came into the Marine Corps married.

  18. CB Senior says:

    Wow we are supposed to celebrate E-0’s now, just because they join and have different plumbing. Is that NOT the definition of NOT being equal. How many pressers for Billy-Bob and Joe Blow were there. Call me when the puke actually does something.

    PS Besides going AWOL.

    • Peter the Bubblehead says:

      “She left her husband and two children in September of 2015 for basic training where she was learning to build bridges, detonate artillery, and detect roadside bombs under combat conditions.”

      So according to that news report, everyone in the Army is a Combat Engineer right out of boot camp?

  19. Jonn Lilyea says:

    This reminds me of a couple of other cases. Shannon Dougherty Faulkner, for example. She battled in the courts for years to get into The Citadel and then when she finally attended, she washed out after a week. She still claims that she suffers from PTSD from that week in college.

    Then there was Kimberly Rivera whose husband talked the mother of three into enlisting so he could quit his job at Walmart. She was deployed to Iraq, and her brilliant husband convinced her to skip out to Canada when she came home on mid-tour leave. She ended up in a confinement facility for more time than if she’d gone back to Iraq instead.

    No, they’re not representative of many of the women who join the services, but at least their cases should be considered during the recruiting process.

    • Skippy says:

      this one above from my own experience would have been steered towards a different career path
      for her to have made it that far The FCP was 100%
      but then again look at some of the choices at her young age. 2 kids before 22 years of age
      I don’t know if they still are having new recruits do the Head evals still where back in 2014
      but it seems some of her choices haven’t been for the better.
      but I’m all about giving people a second chance,

    • gitarcarver says:

      I think you mean Shannon Faulkner – not Dougherty.

      Dougherty is the actress from the television show “Beverly Hills, 90210.”

      • NECCSEABEECPO says:

        Hey anybody could screw that shit up. Because they were both in the news all the time back then give Jonn a brake.

      • Jonn Lilyea says:

        I always get those two mixed up even though they’re at opposite ends of the hotness scale.

        • gitarcarver says:

          Please don’t take my post as anything other than it was – a mild statement that the name wasn’t right.

          It was not a criticism. It was not intended as an insult.

          The reason I noticed it was that I didn’t remember Dougherty going to the Citadel but did remember the case. I went internet searching looking to see what the woman had done after leaving the school.

          The error is completely understandable and there is no condemnation from me on it. Sorry if it came off any other way.

    • Lars the All-Knowing says:

      Careful, Jonn. You’re adding to the anti-female narrative.

  20. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    What husband? I saw no mention of a husband in the linked story.

  21. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Hey! What’s that flag with the large stars inside a blue a circle on a red background? Sure looks Confederate to me. And don’t tell me otherwise, even if you are right (and you would be.) The important thing here is that it LOOKS like a rebel banner of some sort.

  22. Spec-8 MOERK says:

    Hey, what are you people doing there? I’m turning you in to the Chief of Staff!

    Now where’s my ARCOM?

  23. The Commentor' Formerly Known as MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

    So lets list your favorite female military types rather than focusing on this POS:

    Here is just one: Leigh Ann Hester

  24. Pinto Nag says:

    They put the cart before horse in this instance. Just because she enlisted for that job, doesn’t mean she’d complete the training. It’s ridiculous to ‘announce’ something that hasn’t happened yet. Wouldn’t it have been better for everyone to wait for the soldier to complete the training and THEN congratulate them??


      The media would not have a story then. I believe if we just let shit go and not report on this shit it will not be a big deal. The Navy did that with special programs like EOD,UCT,SARE and Riverine. They all have woman and have had woman fail no big deal the problem is we made a big deal about all this so reporters want to jump on any thing pass or fail and before it happens.

  25. A Proud Infidel®™ says:

    Why the candyassed piss-pants FARK didn’t they decide to wait until she graduated from AIT to do their “HEY, LOOK AT US!!!” show unless they were just THAT starved for some gilded PC points? Maybe that’s it, the recruiting orifice may have been starving for attention like the Dutch Rudder Gang after their first few rounds of their cocktail and some T-bird.

  26. JimV says:

    She wanted to be a combat engineer. Really? For what reason?

    I was in Signal my entire military career. But then I was interested in communications and electronics since I was 12 years old. Got my Ham Radio license when I was 15.

    The recruiter said I was a perfect match for my MOS.

    • wilnel says:

      do you still have your ham ticket?

    • sj says:

      I’m a retired Signal Officer. I always liked this GEN Patton story:

      One of the bravest men I saw in the African campaign was on a telegraph pole in the midst of furious fire while we were moving toward Tunis. I stopped and asked him what the hell he was doing up there. He answered, ‘Fixing the wire, sir.’ ‘Isn’t it a little unhealthy up there right now?’ I asked. ‘Yes sir, but this goddamn wire has got to be fixed.’ I asked, ‘Don’t those planes strafing the road bother you?’ And he answered, ‘No sir, but you sure as hell do.’ Now, there was a real soldier. A real man. A man who devoted all he had to his duty, no matter how great the odds, no matter how seemingly insignificant his duty appeared at the time.

    • Newbie says:

      JimV: Same reason why you wanted to be in the Signal Corps. Or it could be the Recruiting Office coaxed her in joining so they could get the publicity.

    • 2/17 Air Cav says:

      Well, hell, she actually seemed like a Mom. No wonder she went on the wing. Probably picked the kids up and is hunkered down in a friend’s house. I’ll never get used to this Moms of young children enlisting stuff. Being a good Mom is F/T with no days off and lousy pay. I get that makes me what I am: a dinosaur.

      • Newbie says:

        2/17 Air Cav: Are you saying it is ok for a Dad of young children to enlist and that a good Dad is not a Full Time job?

        • 2/17 Air Cav says:

          Are you a professional knucklehead or merely an aspiring one? Cripes. Have your fun and move on. If you stay you will most certainly receive a good whacking.

  27. FatCircles0311 says:

    How the hell is someone even eligible for entry when they are popping out children before they are even an adult? That shows a serious case of bad decision making. It’s almost as though the DOD is specifically ignoring good hiring practices to meet quotas that are sure to backfire right in their face.

    The real story here is the recruitment policies. Can’t have a tattoo. Can make absurd life choice and have significant baggage though! Go US military!

    It’s almost as though mission is never a consideration.

    • Newbie says:

      FatCircles0311: What about young men who become Fathers at the ripe age of 15-17 and are allowed to join the military with no questions/concerns about them having children?

      • IDC SARC says:

        All military members are questioned about their dependents, their responsibilities and meeting them before allowed entry. It’s about custody mostly. If you’re a single father with full custody of three children you would have trouble signing up just as any single mother having full custody (and thus, responsibility)would. If you just fathered children but had no custody and no support orders, then it would be different.

      • Hack Stone says:

        Having dependents requires higher scores on the ASVAB and a waiver. At least it does in the Marine Corps, I would guess that the other branches have higher standards for dependents.

  28. Sapper3307 says:

    If she goes AWOL do her kids get their welfare check cut off?

    • IDC SARC says:

      She’s in the system. The military will continue to provide benefits. They don’t hold children responsible for their parent’s bad behavior.

      If/when she is separated, given her limited time in service, I’m not sure how that will play out in the long term. My guess is since she didn’t complete MOS training there will be no long term support for her kids.

    • Green Thumb says:

      The way the Army is making everything equal and lowering standards, AWOL might be a great way to be recognized from the pack and be promoted.

      You know, overcoming problems, getting a grip, showing some toughness on the “rebound” and rising above the pack.

      Sorta like the new 300 PT standard. Dude could be a rapist, drunk and thief, but if he has got a 300 PT score, then he has to be a great guy, right? I mean, who hasn’t gone AWOL? Right?

      Give me a fucking break.

    • Newbie says:

      Sapper, if another Soldier, Male or Female, go AWOL, do their kids/dependents get food stamps as well?

      • IDC SARC says:

        Any military family that is caclulated by income to qualify for food stamps qualifies for food stamps, WIC etc. The basic rule is the kids are not held accountable for their parent’s situation and must be provided necessary support.

        A PFC with dependents for example that is suddenly overburdoned with multiple births (twins. triplets) quickly can have needs which outstrip the financial capabilities of military pay. This is because at least in part, that in the military you receive pay and allowances on a with dependents or without dependents basis. This means you get no more money for having a wife or a wife and three kids.

        This is in stark contrast to welfare that pays you more with each successive dependent you gain.

  29. L. Taylor says:

    I have tried to find data to determine if the rate of desertion for females is higher than for males.

    I could not, in the time I spent, find such data.

    It feels disingenuous to emphasize the desertion of a single female and use it to shape the perception that females are “unfit” to serve in combat arms based on the actions of this one soldier.

    • The Other Whitey says:

      Since when did you spend more than 4 seconds looking up anything, Larsie. I’m not saying women do or don’t desert more often, but with your demonstrated research skills (or lack thereof) and laziness, your failure to find numbers means exactly two things: Jack and shit. And Jack left town.

    • JACK SHIT says:

      You don’t know me, Lars Taylor.

    • Hondo says:

      Obfuscation by intentionally – and very transparently – attempting to change the subject also seems disingenuous. Yet you often do exactly that in your comments here, Taylor. You did exactly that here.

      I believe that form of hijacking a discussion is called the “red herring” rhetorical technique – AKA the intentional non sequitur.

      Male and female AWOL rates are irrelevant to the discussion at hand. What is relevant is that this individual was very prematurely celebrated by some as a “shining example” because they were “the first” – and ended up not being exactly the “example” they expected.

      If an individual’s “being the first” to do something in the military is newsworthy, so is the fact that they apparently voluntarily elected to dishonor themselves by reneging on their commitment to serve. The individual’s gender is irrelevant.

    • Newbie says:

      Lars: Does it really matter what gender has the higher ratio? What about their ethnic background? Their education level? Their religious beliefs? Influence from famlies to include boyfriends/girlfriends? Why gender?

  30. AnotherPat says:

    I suspect someone in the US Army Recruiting Command is putting together a paper right now to go thru the Chain of Command to ensure this does not happen again, i.e. the publicity, “Look at Us”, PAO, not doing their homework before sharing with the media, etc. Just a speculation.

    • Skippy says:

      Crap your not talking about a ten investigation, we had two of them over security clearance issues. with recruits, and right before I got out we had some crazy hot blond from Florida that wanted to enlist, the problem was she was AWOL from the Army 🙂 and wanted for murder in Florida. this was back when we had to run background checks, all be it the first one, at the local level… the lady and two detectives came out asking where she was our station commander shit himself… he couldn’t believe it Lol…

  31. JimV says:

    So how hard is it to find her? I’m assuming she went home to be with her husband (cousin?) and kids.

  32. jonp says:

    with two kids already anyone want to guess how long a deployment baby will take her?

  33. MAJ Arkay says:

    After reading all the comments, I feel like I had an ADHD attack (and I don’t have that).

    Let me sum up the situation.

    Lopez goes on convalescent leave. No mention of where she goes or whether or not anyone in the unit maintained contact with her while she was on said leave.

    Lopez does not return. Unit claims to have tried to locate her. No mention of whether or not unit contacted husband.

    No mention of whether or not husband has filed a missing person report.

    This story is seriously full of holes. We have no idea at this point whether or not she’s actually deserted, or laying dead in a ditch somewhere.

    Meanwhile, the comments were full of crap about how she couldn’t hack training, shouldn’t be in combat engineers, blah blah blah. It’s very obvious how few of you are trained investigators. You got off on any number of tangents, none of which have to do with the fact of a missing trainee. SQUIRREL!

    Finding the trainee should be the focus. If alive, she’ll receive the appropriate discipline. If not, there’re a husband and two kids missing a mom. What she enlisted to do is totally not relevant now.


      Sir, I would put money on it that they have already had contact with her or family members and have determined that she is physically ok. The Military does not chase anymore they just issue FED fugitive warrants.

    • The Commentor' Formerly Known as MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

      Thank you MAJ Obvious!

      You can return to your well ventilated office now!

      • MAJ Arkay says:

        My little military crest of the hill is well-ventilated, thanks; windows are open on a beautiful winter’s day, with highs in the 70s. But I’m retired. No more offices.

        As for “Obvious,” was it obvious, considering how many here got completely off the subject? How many were more interested in insulting women in the military in general and that possible female in the large size uniform, who was not the topic in the first place?

        And a pleasant day to you, too, Bilgey.

    • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

      What’s wrong, Major, hasn’t someone brought coffee to your office desk yet? I’ve done AWOL recoveries myself and making contact wit their family members to insure they’re alive is one of the first things done and I’m sure that someone in her unit has already done so. I’ve also seen OSUT Soldiers go AWOL and how it’s taken care of, she was given the opportunity to serve and she threw it away.

      • MAJ Arkay says:

        Never touch coffee, thanks. And I’m retired; refuse to sit at a desk.

        I did years of investigations into AWOL/KAWOL (look that one up)/Desertions and recoveries. Got some three beer stories about some of them.

        The number of times I found units that claimed to have made family contact but did not was unfortunately too high.

        I say again, there’s not enough info in those reports to draw any conclusions – not that it stops you, does it?

    • Just An Old Dog says:

      There is a reason why the military doesn’t spend a lot of time worrying about service members who go AWOL.
      Its because, well, they are AWOL. If the service member were actually missing ( If the family had no idea where they were, they would be going to the police and the command).
      Little miss wannabe is hiding in plain sight with her hubby. Other than a phone call from the command no one is going to look for her. Her pay is stopped and she will eventually be dropped off the rolls.
      If she gets caught in a traffic stop a year or so down the line they may send her back and process her.
      For the most part these entry level AWOLs are a self-solving problem.

      • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

        That OR the next time she has to do something like renew her Drivers License or undergo a background check it’ll pop up on her, ditto as soon as she gets pulled over or checked out by any LEO or agency, she did this to herself!

    • IDC SARC says:

      Welcome to social media “major”…are you a suddenly reformed luddite or are you just stupid?

      • MAJ Arkay says:

        Well, this is disappointing. I guess you’re not one of the folks here whose insults are truly creative.

        If you had done the slightest homework before popping off, you’d know I’ve been around here for years and years – just don’t post a whole lot.

        I’d show you my retired ID card that says “Major” on it, but why bother? You’re not interesting enough to bother with.

        • IDC SARC says:

          …and yet you did bother with me.

          My point was, you are seeing exactly what happens in social media and are surprised by it. This is hardly a place to expect continuous good order and discipline or even linear goal oriented thought.
          Complaining about what is the status quo is your prerogative, but your longevity here only makes it that more amusing to me. Although, it does make it seem more likely that you were an O.

          • OWB says:

            So, are you saying that those of us who expect something akin to linear thinking from somewhere between some and most posters of comments should stop reading simply because some folks refuse to use it?

            Or put another way, its a blessing that we are all free to post our opinions around here and that you are not the singular arbiter of what is and is not acceptable.

            • IDC SARC says:

              “Or put another way, its a blessing that we are all free to post our opinions around here and that I am not the singular arbiter of what is and is not acceptable.”

              I fixed that for you OWB. You’re welcome.

              • OWB says:

                That’s not really related to the topic at hand, but it certainly is a true statement.

                Now, you got a valid reason to avoid answering my question?

      • Just An Old Dog says:

        I can recall one instance in my entire career when a Familiy member called up because a Marine was UA.
        His Father was a 1st Sgt and his Brother was an NCO.
        His MOTHER was the one who called though, saying WE needed to go find him because there was NO WAY he went UA. Our 1st Sgt told her to go talk to her hubby. She ended up calling a few more times then stopped.
        Ends up he was shacked up with some hose-beast out in J-Ville and his brain had shrunk and dropped about three feet from its proper location.
        Apparently he had been holding on to his L/Cpl rank by the skin of his teeth in his last unit as well. Momma and Pop didnt know about the 2 office hours and numerour page 11s in his SRB.

        • Twist says:

          When I was at Schofield Barracks we had a Soldier show up right before a 4 day weekend and then instantly go AWOL. He hung out on the beach until he ran out of money. He called his Mom for money for a plane ticket. She flew to Hawaii balled him up and turned him in herself.

  34. OWB says:

    What is the point of utility uniforms for pregnant personnel? They can’t deploy. They often can’t do their jobs, so why the expense of designing the uniform, which looks truly ignorant.

    Got seriously honked off the few times I’ve had to deal with useless, pregnant females. That said, one of the very best troopers ever managed to do her job better than the guys in the section when she was 8+ months pregnant, so it isn’t necessarily a deal buster with me.

    • Newbie says:

      OWB: I’m one of those who used to be a “useless, pregnant female(s)” who “often can’t do their jobs”.

      I was in an MTOE unit and wore the same uniform as other soldiers when I was pregnant. Some of those soldiers had bigger bellies than me. And they were not female.

      I remembered taking a PT test when I was 4 months pregnant. Push ups, sit ups and the 2 mile run. I scored 300.

      My husband and I served together a total of 45 years. We produced a son while we were on Active Duty. That son is now a Soldier in the US Army.

      Glad to see you mention that one of your best troopers managed to do a better job than the men in your section when she was 8 months pregnant.

      I might have been that Soldier.

      The blog is about Lopez…not the pregnant CPT in the picture.

      • Hondo says:

        Newbie: I’m glad you held up your “end of the bargain” when expecting. Good for you.

        However, I’m also guessing you’ve seen people in the military who “rode their profile” to get out of legitimate military duties – including, perhaps, a pregnant female or two who did that.

        Hell, I’ll go out on a limb here and say most if not all TAH readers have seen that.

        Why? Because it happens with every freaking kind of profile. There are some soldiers who will use one – or attempt to get one – as an excuse to sham.

        FWIW: in case you’re not aware of it, OWB is female. You seem to be new, so you might not have realized that.

        • Newbie says:

          Thank you for the feedback, Hondo and yes, I did not know OWB’s gender. And yes, I have had my share of problem troops, both genders.(haven’t we all). I looked at who they were as a person, their characters, their abilty to perform as Soldiers. As in all structured organizations, we have the good ones and then we have those who in reality were not meant to serve in the Military. Appreciated the honesty.

        • Hack Stone says:

          In the Marine Corps, we called it a Laminated Light Duty Chit.

      • OWB says:

        Well make up your mind, Newbie – were you useless or did you do your job? Can’t be both. The overall mission of the military should not include carrying dead weight just for grins and giggles. I don’t frankly care what the reason might be. Do the job or get out.

        Pregnancy, being a condition from which one can recover, should be handled much like knee surgeries and everything else where one can go off the payroll, perform light duty, or something else until medically able to return to regular duty.

        This is not a difficult concept. Seriously.

        If you want to talk about Lopez (which seems to me to have been more than adequately covered), no one is stopping you from doing so. Meanwhile, The pic at the top of the page is utterly disgusting. It is my right as an American to express that view. It flies in the face of the multiple oaths I took to have you suggest otherwise.

        Carry on. Some day perhaps we will be in a position to compare creds, but frankly I don’t see how either of our families total TIS, my gender, or much of anything else has to do with our freedom to express an opinion about this whale or anything else pertaining to the military. Just so you know, though, you and yours are unlikely to win if you insist upon making this into some sort of contest.

      • jonp says:

        yeah, and who ended up paying for your baby? Uncle sucker. And I’m still throwing the flag on your endless physical exploits. The fact you see the need to keep throwing them out there, this time while pregnant is a giant flashing “I’m making this whole shit up” warning

    • Eden says:

      At least they have maternity utility uniforms. I had to wear civvies in lieu of utility uniform because we didn’t have such a thing.

      • OWB says:

        Some of us remember when pregnancy was cause for separation. Seemed like a reasonable thing. And might explain my revulsion with utility hatching suits. Thought those were for serious hard work, not office work.

        Oh, well. Times do change. (I lucked out and sold my buggy whip stock before that market crashed. What a relief that was.)

        • NECCSEABEECPO says:

          I remember early 90’s. I was just coming in a boot.. We didn’t have them in are units yet till 95..

  35. Data Dawg DV X says:

    Several questions. 1. Was there a trauma of some sort to interfere with this person reporting back to duty? 2. Was the training too hard on her mental or physical status? 3. Did some kind of SHARP related incident occur which has not been disclosed? At this point, IMO, this person has earned, if not OTH discharge, then possibly a court martial, with at least Bad Conduct discharge. I wouldn’t bother with the ELS uncharacterized, as this seems to show the person is not reliable, and would most likely endanger her comrades and or herself if she progressed to full duty.

    • Just An Old Dog says:

      She more than likely will get an ELS. Reading between the lines she probably was injured in recruit training and sent home over Christmas to recover some.
      When I was in charge of Recruit Seperations Platoon we had several recruits awaiting discharge who had been there several months and had “days on the books”
      They were good kids who were getting out through no fault of their own.
      The OIC and I had a talk and we let about 10 of them go home over the holidays.
      They all came back. Of course there was money on the line as most of them were awaiting med boards and comp and pen proceedings.

  36. jonp says:

    By the way: how does everyone know the other woman in the picture is pregnant?

    A woman in the military that becomes pregnant on active duty should be immediately separated.

    • IDC SARC says:


      • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

        Maybe not, that USED to be US Army Policy.

        • IDC SARC says:

          I was joking…I didn’t know the Army policy, but I remember the USMC/USN policy during my time that separation wasn’t mandatory, but voluntary if desired.

          Additionally, if separation was elected the military still paid for the prenatal, perinatal and limited postnatal medical care.


      I think you have been out some time brother that stopped in early -mid 90’s. All they have to do is provide a plan for child care is deployed.

      • Eden says:

        Nope, try late 70s. By the early 80s, separation was authorized but by no means mandatory.

        • NECCSEABEECPO says:

          Navy ended in 93 because they opened Combat Ships and Support to females. I knew one of the last FMS that got out under that she chose to get out but they stopped after that. Still in contact with her that is why I know the year.

    • Eden says:

      You are old. That has not been military policy for at least 35 years.

  37. JimV says:

    Army Times reports that she turned herself in to the authorities on Thursday.

    Now what happens?

    • IDC SARC says:

      I get to do her confinement physical sooner rather than later. awww yeahzz

    • Just An Old Dog says:

      I’m Betting return to Ft Lost-in-the woods and processed as an ELS.
      Its actually cheaper than holding on to her for an Art 15 or CM.
      She could be gone in less than 5 days with no Bennies, a Failure To Adapt/ Entry Level Separation and a bus ticket home.
      Art 15 only takes 1/2 Base pay.
      Army just needs to cut their losses and part ways. She was a bad risk.

      • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

        WHOA, just a second. Will she turn in everything she was issued like she’s supposed to? We had a wuss go AWOL from my OSUT Unit in the early 90’s who threw away his Class A uniform and he had to sign a Statement of Charges for it when he got thrown out. That along with his Article 15 for AWOL and whatever else the Unit Cadre could come up with, he left Fort Lost-in-the-Woods wearing cheap civvies from the PX with a Greymutt bus ticket and $50 in his pocket, NOTHING else! Now if the powers that be want to return the favor they can do her just as well.

        • NECCSEABEECPO says:

          You know that’s funny they gave us like paper money I kept going because I didn’t want to pay that money back, but I was dumb ass because we paid for it any way. BOOT!!!