AR20140001481

IN THE CASE OF: Ms.

BOARD DATE: 6 February 2015

CASE NUMBER: AR20140001481
___________________________________________________________________________

Board Determination and Directed Action

1. After carefully examining the applicant’s record of service during the period of enlistment under review and considering the Discussion and Recommendation which follows, the Board determined the discharge was both proper and equitable and voted to deny relief.

2. However, notwithstanding the propriety of the applicant’s discharge, the Board found that the applicant’s DD Form 214, block 25, contains an erroneous entry.

3. Accordingly, the Board directed an administrative correction to block 25, separation authority, to reflect, AR 635-200, Paragraph 13-2e, and to reissue the applicants DD Form 214.

Presiding Officer

I certify that herein is recorded the true and complete record of the proceedings of the Department of the Army Discharge Review Board in this case.

THE APPLICANTS REQUEST AND STATEMENT:

1. The applicant requests to upgrade the characterization of her service from general, under honorable conditions to fully honorable, and to change the reentry code, which corresponds with the narrative reason for her discharge.

2. The applicant states, in pertinent part and in effect, her request also includes changing the reentry code. Although she was deemed as lacking initiative and making excuses for why she was failing her APFTs, the failures resulted from many physical/medical tribulations such as: having surgery due to an incompetent cervical condition with curette at 16 weeks gestation of her pregnancy and being on complete bed rest for majority of her pregnancy. Her physical movement was limited to ensure the survival of her child. The time period included giving birth at 40 weeks gestation and approximately three weeks of heal time. She received a 50 percent disability rating from the VA for the medical conditions incurred on active duty. Her record indicates she was a productive and a satisfactory progressing Soldier whose CG Article 15 was an isolated offense.

DISCHARGE UNDER REVIEW INFORMATION:

a. Application Receipt Date: 22 January 2014
b. Discharge Received: General, Under Honorable Conditions
c. Date of Discharge: 18 July 1999
d. Reason/Authority/SPD/RE Code: Physical Standards, (To Be Determined), LFT, RE-3
e. Unit of assignment: 390th Sig Co, 30th Sig Bn, Schofield Barracks, HI
f. Current Enlistment Date/Term: 16 January 1997, 4 years
g. Current Enlistment Service: 2 years, 6 months, 3 days
h. Total Service: 2 years, 6 months, 3 days
i. Time Lost: None
j. Previous Discharges: None
k. Highest Grade Achieved: E-3
l. Military Occupational Specialty: 74C10, Record Telecommunications Operator/
Maintainer
m. GT Score: 103
n. Education: HS Graduate
o. Overseas Service: Hawaii
p. Combat Service: None
q. Decorations/Awards: ASR
r. Administrative Separation Board: No
s. Performance Ratings: None
t. Counseling Statements: Yes
u. Prior Board Review: No

SUMMARY OF SERVICE:

The record shows the applicant enlisted in the Regular Army on 16 January 1997, for a period of 4 years. She was 23 years old at the time of entry and a high school graduate. She was trained in and awarded military occupational specialty (MOS) 74C10, Record Telecommunications Operator/Maintainer. Her record documents no acts of valor or significant achievement. She completed 2 years, 6 months, and 3 days of active duty service.

SEPARATION FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES:

1. The applicants service record shows on 29 April 1999, the unit commander notified the applicant of initiation of separation action under the provisions of Chapter 13, AR 635-200, by reason of unsatisfactory performance, specifically for failing two consecutive APFTs.

2. The unit commander recommended a general, under honorable conditions discharge and advised the applicant of her rights.

3. On 29 April 1999, the applicant consulted with legal counsel, was advised of the impact of the discharge action, and submitted statements on her behalf. The unit commander subsequently recommended separation from the Army and waiver of further rehabilitative efforts.

4. On 6 May 1999, the separation authority waived further rehabilitation and directed the applicants discharge with a characterization of service of general, under honorable conditions. The applicant was transferred to the U.S. Army Reserve Control Group.

5. The applicant was discharged from the Army on 18 July 1999, with a characterization of service of general, under honorable conditions.

6. The applicants service record does not contain any evidence of unauthorized absences or time lost.

EVIDENCE OBTAINED FROM THE APPLICANT’S RECORD:

1. Article 15, dated 26 February 1999, for disobeying a lawful order from a NCO (990217) and being disrespectful in language towards an NCO (990217) The punishment consisted of 14 days extra duty, (CG).

2. Two negative counseling statements, dated 25 November 1998 and 25 February 1999, for failing her APFT (981123 and 990224); lacking initiative; and being placed on a special physical training program.

3. Memorandum, dated 31 March 1999, subject: Request for Waiver Rehabilitative Transfer, rendered by the applicants unit commander indicates it was determined that the applicant should not be provided rehabilitative transfer due to her unwillingness to participate in specialized training; receiving an Article 15 for disrespecting an NCO and failing to follow a lawful order; resisting all rehabilitation attempts; and no longer desiring to petition for a secret clearance due to failing to pay just due debts.

4. Two Army Physical Fitness Test Scorecards, dated 24 February 1999 and 23 November 1998, indicates the applicant failed the 2-mile run during record APFTs.

EVIDENCE SUBMITTED BY THE APPLICANT:

The applicant provided a self-authored statement; ten counseling statements for the period between August 1997 and February 1999; CG Article 15, dated 26 February 1999; APFT scorecards, dated 23 November 1998 and 26 February 1999; VA rating decision correspondence, dated 10 October 2013; and four letters of support.

POST-SERVICE ACTIVITY:

The applicant provided none.

REGULATORY AUTHORITY:

1. Army Regulation 635-200 sets forth the requirements and procedures for administrative discharge of enlisted personnel. Chapter 13-2e states in pertinent part, that separation proceedings will be initiated for Soldiers without medical limitations who have two consecutive failures of the Army Physical Fitness Test. The reason for discharge will be shown as physical standards.

2. The service of Soldiers separated because of unsatisfactory performance for failure to meet physical standards will be characterized as honorable or general, under honorable conditions.

3. Army Regulation 635-5-1 (Separation Program Designator (SPD) Codes) provides the specific authorities (regulatory or directive), reasons for separating Soldiers from active duty, and the SPD codes to be entered on the DD Form 214. It identifies the SPD code of “LFT” as the appropriate code to assign enlisted Soldiers who are discharged under the provisions of Army Regulation 635-200, Chapter 13, paragraph 13-2e, Physical Standards.

4. The SPD Code/RE Code Cross Reference Table shows that a Soldier assigned an SPD Code of “LFT” will be assigned an RE Code of 3.

DISCUSSION AND RECOMMENDATION:

1. The applicants request for an upgrade of the characterization of her discharge and to change the reentry code that corresponds with the narrative reason for her discharge was carefully considered. However, after examining the applicants record of service, her military records, the documents and issues submitted with the application, there are insufficient mitigating factors to merit an upgrade of the applicant’s discharge or to change the reentry code that corresponds with the narrative reason for her discharge.

2. In addition, notwithstanding the propriety of the applicants discharge, the record shows that someone in the discharge process erroneously entered on her DD Form 214, block 25, separation authority, as To Be Determined.

3. The record confirms that the applicants discharge was appropriate because the quality of her service was not consistent with the Army’s standards for acceptable personal conduct and performance of duty by military personnel. By failing to meet the minimum standards of the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) as an unsatisfactory performance and by the incidents of misconduct, the applicant diminished the quality of her service below that meriting an honorable characterization of service. Her record of service was marred by receiving a CG Article 15 and negative counseling statements, including records of failing her APFTs.

4. The applicant provided no independent corroborating evidence demonstrating that either the command’s action was erroneous or that the applicants service mitigated the misconduct or poor duty performance.

5. The applicant contends although she was deemed as lacking initiative and making excuses for failing her APFTs, they were contributed to many physical/medical tribulations such as: having surgery due to an incompetent cervical condition with curette at 16 weeks gestation of her pregnancy and being on complete bed rest for majority of her pregnancy. Her physical movement was limited to ensure the survival of her child. The time period included giving birth at 40 weeks gestation and approximately three weeks of heal time. However, the evidence of record shows the command attempted to assist the applicant in performing and conducting herself to Army standards by providing counseling, the imposition of non-judicial punishment, and placing her on a special physical fitness training program, the applicant failed to respond appropriately to these efforts.

6. Furthermore, the fact that the Veterans Administration has granted the applicant service connection disability for medical conditions the applicant suffered while on active duty does not support a conclusion that these conditions rendered the applicant unfit for further service at the time of her discharge processing. The available medical evidence in the record is void of any indication that the applicant was suffering from a disabling medical or mental condition during her discharge processing that would have warranted her separation processing through medical channels.

7. The applicant contends she was a productive and a satisfactory progressing Soldier whose CG Article 15 was an isolated offense. Although a single incident, the discrediting entry constituted a departure from the standards of conduct expected of Soldiers in the Army. The applicable Army regulation states there are circumstances in which the conduct or performance of duty reflected by a single incident provides the basis for a characterization. The applicant’s incident of misconduct adversely affected the quality of her service, brought discredit on the Army, and was prejudicial to good order and discipline.

8. The applicant requests to change her reentry code. However, Soldiers being processed for separation are assigned reentry codes based on their service records or the reason for discharge. Based on Army Regulation 635-5-1 and the SPD Code/RE Code Cross Reference Table the applicant was appropriately assigned an RE code of 3. There are no basis upon which to grant a change to the reason or to the RE code. An RE Code of 3 indicates the applicant requires a waiver prior to being allowed to reenlist. If reenlistment is desired, the applicant should contact a local recruiter to determine eligibility to reenlist. Recruiters can best advise a former service member as to the needs of the Army at the time, and are required to process waivers of reentry eligibility (RE) codes if appropriate.

9. The applicant was separated under the provisions of Chapter 13, paragraph 13-2e, AR 635-200, with a general, under honorable conditions discharge. The narrative reason specified by Army Regulations for a discharge under this paragraph is “Physical Standards,” and the separation code is “LFT.” Army Regulation 635-5, Separation Documents, governs preparation of the DD Form 214 and dictates that entry of the narrative reason for separation, entered in block 28 and separation code, entered in block 26 of the form, will be exactly as listed in tables 2-2 or 2-3 of AR 635-5-1, Separation Program Designator (SPD) Codes. The regulation further stipulates that no deviation is authorized. There is no provision for any other reason to be entered under this regulation.

10. The third party statements provided with the application in support of her, speak highly of the applicants performance. However, the persons providing the character reference statements were not in a position to fully understand or appreciate the expectations of the applicants chain of command. As such, none of these statements provide any evidence sufficiently compelling toward upgrading the characterization of her service. The statements were previously considered by the separation authority.

11. Except for the required administrative correction to the applicants DD Form 214 as described at the preceding paragraph 2, the records show the proper discharge and separation authority procedures were followed in this case.

12. In view of the foregoing, it is recommended that an administrative change be made to block 25, separation authority, to AR 635-200, paragraph 13-2e. Except for the foregoing modification, the discharge was both proper and equitable.

13. Therefore, the reason for discharge and the characterization of service being both proper and equitable, recommend the Board deny relief. However, recommend the Board direct a change to block 25, separation authority to reflect, AR 635-200, Paragraph 13-2e.

SUMMARY OF ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD HEARING:

Type of Hearing: Records Review Date: 6 February 2015 Location: Washington, DC

Did the Applicant Testify, No

Counsel/Representative: None

Witnesses/Observers: No

Board Vote:
Character Change: 0 No Change: 5
Reason Change: 0 No Change: 5
(Board member names available upon request)

Board Action Directed:
Issue a new DD Form 214: Yes
Change Characterization to: No Change
Change Reason to: No Change
Change Authority for Separation: AR 635-200, Chapter 13, Paragraph 13-2e
Change RE Code to: NA
Grade Restoration to: NA
Other: NA

Legend:
AMHRR – Army Military Human Resource Record FG – Field Grade IADT Initial Active Duty Training RE – Reentry
AWOL – Absent Without Leave GD – General Discharge NA – Not applicable SCM- Summary Court Martial
BCD – Bad Conduct Discharge HS – High School NIF – Not in File SPCM – Special Court Martial
CG – Company Grade Article 15 HD – Honorable Discharge OAD – Ordered to Active Duty UNC – Uncharacterized Discharge
CID – Criminal investigation Department MP Military Police OMPF – Official Military Personnel File UOTHC – Under Other Than Honorable Conditions

ADRB Case Report and Directive (cont) AR20140001481

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ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD (ADRB)

CASE REPORT AND DIRECTIVE

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