Letter of intent to administratively separate under other than honorable conditions

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					                        DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY
                    NAVAL DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD (NDRB)
                           DISCHARGE REVIEW
                          DECISIONAL DOCUMENT




                                       ex-Pvt, USMCR
                                    Docket No. MD05-00452

Applicant’s Request

The application for discharge review was received on 20050112. The Applicant requests the
characterization of service received at the time of discharge be changed to honorable. The
Applicant requests a documentary record discharge review. The Applicant did not list any
representative on the DD Form 293.

Decision

A documentary discharge review was conducted in Washington, D.C. on 20050428. After a
thorough review of the records, supporting documents, facts, and circumstances unique to this
case, no impropriety or inequity in the characterization of the Applicant’s service was discovered
by the NDRB. The Board’s vote was unanimous that the character of the discharge shall not
change. The discharge shall remain: UNDER OTHER THAN HONORABLE
CONDITIONS/Failure to Participate (Reserve not on active duty) (administrative discharge
board required but waived), authority: MARCORSEPMAN 6213.




The remaining portion of this document is divided into 4 Parts: Part I - Applicant’s Issues and
Documentation, Part II - Summary of Service, Part III – Rationale for Decision and Pertinent
Regulation/Law, Part IV - Information for the Applicant.
Docket No. MD05-00452


                PART I - APPLICANT’S ISSUES AND DOCUMENTATION

Issues, as stated

Applicant’s issues, as stated on the application:

1. “I believe my discharge from the Marine Reserves to be inequitable I entered treatment under
the instructions of my C.O. Major N_, given to me on 1991/08/11. The discharge was initiated
by a new C.O. Captain S_, Specific Basis excessive unexcused absences from scheduled drills.
Further explanation of issues in Item 14.

I was put on call for deployment to Iraq and sent to Artillery School, 1991/06/21 to 1991/08/03.
In the last two weeks of the school I was having problems with drinking. I was instructed upon
my return to my Unit to get help by my CO. at the time, Major N_ noted in Administrative
Remarks 1991/08/11, and I sought treatment on my own. I was told the Marine Reserves at the
time had no ability to offer treatment for alcoholism. I did successfully complete the program I
entered. Medical Document Al In the discharge report page 2 item 2 it states that I declined
assistance from my immediate supervisor and CO.; I believe the C.O referred to here was
Captain S_ who initiated my discharge. I did not refuse the help or the orders of Major N_ to
seek help. It was also stated that I made no attempt to rectify my missed drills: believe this to be
an untrue statement. The drill dates missed while seeking and being in treatment were
1991/09/06,1991/10/04 1991/11/01, 15 drills all together. I contacted the Unit and tried to make
arrangements to make up my missed drills, though the discharge had already been initiated and
almost finalized. I was told it was to late to do anything. On page 3 item 7 it states that I had no
potential for mobilization. This seems to be unjust statement because I was not given the chance
or time to show I Found solution for my alcoholism, was sober and fit for duty.”

Applicant's Remarks as stated on the DD Form 293: “I was counseled after my first MOS school
for possible alcohol abuse. I attended A.A. meetings to help me with the problem and attainted
some sobriety. I was not diagnosed an alcoholic until September 1991 I relapsed in 1991 while
in artillery school. I believe that my inability to attend A.A. meetings at Ft. Sill, due to their
location in Oklahoma City, and undiagnosed mental disorder contributed to this relapse. I was
later diagnosed with Bi-Polar disorder in the spring of 1992 by Dr. P_. Many of my psychiatrists
believe that my Bi-Polar disorder took hold during my service to the Marines. I was told
numerous times that until the Bi-Polar disorder was treated and medication properly balanced, I
could have never achieved any long term sobriety. It has also been noted that my alcoholism and
use of valium were an attempt to self medicate my Bi-Polar Disorder. Medical Document Al and
El Klonopin, a medication I am currently taking, is a derivative of valium. This would leave
credence to what I have been told about my alcoholism, and the valium prescribed to me by a
family physician while in the Reserves.
Due to the help I have received for my Bi Polar disorder, I have been sober over 10 yrs
continuously. I am also enrolled at the University of Texas at El Paso obtaining a C.I.S. degree; I
am employed by the University Library and a happily married man. I believe my Bi-Polar
disorder had a major affect on my service, because it was untreated, and undiagnosed. I hope the



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Docket No. MD05-00452

Board will give some consideration of this diagnoses, although after my discharge, when making
a ruling.”

Documentation

In addition to the service record, the following additional documentation, submitted by the
Applicant, was considered:

    Letter from Applicant to Congressman, dated September 1, 2004 (2 pages)
    Medical record page, dated November 15, 1991
    Letter from El Paso Mental Health & Mental Retardation, dated September 15, 2004
    Character reference, dated September 22, 2004
    Character reference, dated September 9, 2004
    Character reference, dated September 30, 2004
    Unofficial transcript, dated October 12, 2004 (5 pages)




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Docket No. MD05-00452


                             PART II - SUMMARY OF SERVICE

Prior Service (component, dates of service, type of discharge):

       Active: None
       Inactive: None

Period of Service Under Review:

Date of Enlistment: 880812            Date of Discharge: 920227

Length of Service (years, months, days):

       Active: 00 04 13
       Inactive: 04 02 03

Age at Entry: 19                      Years Contracted: 8

Education Level: 12                   AFQT: 74

Highest Rank: PFC                     MOS: 0811

Final Enlisted Performance Evaluation Averages (number of marks):

Proficiency: 3.7 (7)          Conduct: 3.9 (7)

Military Decorations: None

Unit/Campaign/Service Awards: RSB

Days of Unauthorized Absence: None

Character, Narrative Reason, and Authority of Discharge (at time of issuance):

UNDER OTHER THAN HONORABLE CONDITIONS/Failure to Participate (Reserve not on
active duty) (administrative discharge board required but waived); authority:
MARCORSEPMAN 6213.

Chronological Listing of Significant Service Events:

880812:        Enlistment contract into the USMCR documents acknowledgement of the
               requirement to participate in 48 scheduled drills and not less than 14 days of
               annual training per year for 6 years upon completion of initial active duty training.

880823:        Applicant reported for initial tour of active duty for training.


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Docket No. MD05-00452



881110:     Applicant released from initial tour of active duty for training with an Honorable
            by reason of completion of required active service (USMCR) IADT.

890713:     Applicant reported for tour of active duty for training.

890726:     Applicant released from tour of active duty for training.

890725:     U.S. Navy Medical Officer, Branch Clinic, NAB Coronado, CA, examines the
            Applicant. Applicant was sent to sick call for ETOH abuse evaluation.
            Recommendation: counseling for ETOH abuse, behavior modification (at least
            Level II).

890813:     Counseled regarding academic failure at the Basic Logistics/Embarkation Course
            and related alcohol abuse which could lead to being transferred to the IRR.

891021:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

891119:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

891201:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

900106:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

900211:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

900303:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

900401:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.




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Docket No. MD05-00452

900501:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion Lance Corporal
            because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record book
            entry and chose not to make a statement.

900601:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

900701:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

900801:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

900901:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation.

901001:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

901101:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

901201:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.

910101:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose to make a statement.

910201:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant signed the record
            book entry and chose not to make a statement.


910203:     U.S. Navy Medical Officer examines Applicant. Applicant referred to clinic due
            to physical appearance of intoxication. Applicant denies use of ETOH or illegal
            drugs. Diagnosis: “Tremulous due to heavy coffee intake.”

910621:     Applicant reported for tour of active duty for training.


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Docket No. MD05-00452



910628:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Lance
            Corporal for the months of March, April, May, June and July because of
            unsatisfactory drill participation and poor performance of duty as reflected by my
            inability to complete formal school training in MOS 0431.

910803:     Applicant released from tour of active duty for training.

910811:     U. S. Navy Medical Officer examines the Applicant: “Applicant has been on a 5-
            day binge (100 % ETOH) since breaking his hand and demolishing his car in an
            accident. Has a long history of ETOH abuse (alcoholic since age 12). Had
            treatment at Betty Ford Center. I believe that his alcoholism interferes with his
            ability to perform duties.”

910811:     Counseled for deficiencies in performance and conduct. [The generous prior
            opportunities the Marine Corps Reserve has given him to get his life together and
            get over his chronic alcoholism; his many drills missed under questionable
            circumstances in which he was medically excused because he was given the
            benefit of the doubt; and his intolerable appearance in reporting this drill weekend
            out of uniform, disheveled, and unshaven.] Necessary corrective actions
            explained, sources of assistance provided, disciplinary and discharge warning
            issued.

911006:     Counseled for deficiencies in performance and conduct. [Unsatisfactory drill
            participation in the United States Marine Corps Reserve.] Necessary corrective
            actions explained, sources of assistance provided, disciplinary and discharge
            warning issued. Applicant not available for signature.

911006:     Applicant administratively reduced in rank to Pvt (E-1) per Battery Special Order
            05-92. Admin reduction authorized by MCO P1400.32 per 5003.

911101:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Private First
            Class because of unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant not available for
            signature.




911103:     Letter of intent to administratively separate under other than honorable conditions
            for the failure to participate in reserve training was sent via certified mail (P496
            623 081), return receipt requested. Commanding Officer notified the Applicant
            that factual basis was accumulation of 24 unexcused absences from scheduled
            drill in the preceeding 12 months.




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Docket No. MD05-00452

911103:     Applicant advised of rights and having elected not to consult with counsel
            certified under UCMJ Article 27B, elected to waive all rights.

911114:     Applicant’s mother receipted for certified letter of Notification of
            Separation Proceedings. Applicant failed to acknowledge the contents. [The
            failure to acknowledge official certified mail constitutes acknowledgement and
            waiver of all rights (MARCORSEPMAN par. 6303)]

911115:     Civilian hospital and medical examination by L. A_ G__, M.D..
            Applicant admitted to hospital 09/25/91, discharged from hospital 10/15/91.
            Applicant has a preliminary diagnosis of substance dependency alcohol and
            valium and possible pending DT’s and withdrawal from valium. Final diagnosis:
            AXIS I: Substance dependency alcohol and valium and valium intoxication.

920112:     Applicant informed eligible but not recommended for promotion to Private First
            Class for the months of December 1991 and January 1992 because of
            unsatisfactory drill participation. Applicant not available for signature.

920112:     Commanding Officer, I-I N Btry, 5th Bn, 14th Mar, recommended discharge under
            other than honorable conditions by reason of misconduct due to unsatisfactory
            participation in the Ready Reserve. The factual basis for this recommendation is
            the Applicant’s accumulation of 24 unexcused absences from scheduled drills in
            the preceding six months.

920204:     Command Officer, I-I, 5thBn, 14thMar concurs with CO, I-I N Btry
            recommendation for Applicant’s administrative discharge under other than
            honorable conditions. CO’s comments: “Every effort was extended that was
            possible to Private M_ in affording him the opportunity to get on track toward a
            satisfactory drill status. He rejected all assistance and counseling.”

920226:     SJA review determined the case sufficient in law and fact.

920227:     GCMCA, Commanding General, 4th Marine Division (REIN), directed the
            Applicant's discharge under conditions other than honorable by reason of
            misconduct due to unsatisfactory participation in the Ready Reserve.




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Docket No. MD05-00452


  PART III – RATIONALE FOR DECISION AND PERTINENT REGULATION/LAW

Discussion

The Applicant was discharged on 19920227 under other than honorable conditions for
misconduct due to unsatisfactory participation in the Ready Reserve (A, B, and C). The Board
presumed regularity in the conduct of governmental affairs (D). After a thorough review of the
records, supporting documents, facts, and circumstances unique to this case, the Board found that
the discharge was proper and equitable (E and F).

Issue 1. In the Applicant’s case, the Board could discern no impropriety or inequity and
therefore considered the Applicant’s discharge proper and equitable. Specifically, Applicant
alleged that he missed drill because he “entered treatment under the instructions of his CO given
to him on 19910811.” The record shows that the Applicant’s CO counseled him for deficiencies
in performance and conduct concerning the period previous to 19910811 and referred to “his
many missed drills under questionable circumstances in which he was medically excused because
he was given the benefit of the doubt”. The record contains no evidence of any wrongdoing by
the Applicant’s Commanding Officer or anyone else for that matter in the discharge process. The
Board presumes regularity in the conduct of governmental affairs in the absence of persuasive
evidence to the contrary. As such, this Board presumed that Applicant’s discharge was regular in
all respects. Relief denied.

When the service of a member of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve has been honest and faithful, it is
appropriate to characterize that service as honorable. An under other than honorable conditions
discharge is warranted when significant negative aspects of a member's conduct or performance of
duty outweigh the positive aspects of the member's military record. The Applicant was absent
from scheduled drills for August, September, October, and November 1991 and January 1992,
accumulating a total of 24 unexcused absences over a 6 month period. The Applicant’s unit
attempted to contact him by phone on each occasion that he missed drill but was unsuccessful.
The Applicant’s CO stated that the Applicant was offered the opportunity to make-up his missed
drills but he failed to do so. The Applicant was notified by certified mail of the CO’s intent to
recommend administrative discharge; the Applicant failed to respond by signature receipt
thereby, waiving his rights per MARCORSEPMAN par. 6303. The Applicant’s conduct, which
forms the primary basis for determining the character of his service, reflects his willful failure to
meet the requirements of his contract with the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve and falls far short of that
required for an upgrade of his characterization of service. Relief is not warranted.




The Applicant contends that his problems in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve can be attributed to
his alcoholism. While he may feel that his abuse of alcohol was the underlying cause of his
misconduct, the record clearly reflects his willful misconduct and demonstrated he was unfit for
further service. The evidence of record did not show that the Applicant was either not



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Docket No. MD05-00452

responsible for his conduct or that he should not be held accountable for his actions. Relief
denied.

There is no law, or regulation, which provides that an unfavorable discharge may be upgraded
based solely on the passage of time, or good conduct in civilian life, subsequent to leaving the
service. The NDRB is authorized to consider outstanding post-service factors in the
recharacterization of a discharge, to the extent that such matters provide a basis for a more
thorough understanding of the Applicant’s performance and conduct during the period of service
under review. The Board recognizes the Applicant’s efforts towards alcohol rehabilitation and
continuing education. After a complete review of the entire record, including the evidence
submitted by the Applicant, the Board determined that his discharge was appropriate and that his
evidence of post-service conduct was found not to mitigate the conduct for which he was
discharged. Relief denied

The Applicant remains eligible for a personal appearance hearing, provided an application is
received, at the NDRB, within 15 years from the date of discharge. The Applicant can provide
documentation to support any claims of post-service accomplishments or any other evidence
related to his discharge at that time. Representation at a personal appearance hearing is
recommended but not required.

Pertinent Regulation/Law (at time of discharge)

A. Paragraph 6213 of the Marine Corps Separation and Retirement Manual, (MCO P1900.16D,
effective 890627 until 950817) states that a Marine may be separated for unsatisfactory
participation in the Ready Reserve under criteria established in MCO P10014.1.

B. Marine Corps Reserve Administrative Management Manual, MCO P10014.1.

C. Table 6-1, Guide for Characterization of Service, of the Marine Corps Separation and
Retirement Manual, (MCO P1900.16D, effective 890627 until 950817).

D. Secretary of the Navy Instruction 5420.174D of 22 December 2004, Naval Discharge Review
Board (NDRB) Procedures and Standards, Part II, AUTHORITY/POLICY FOR
DEPARTMENTAL DISCHARGE REVIEW.

E. Secretary of the Navy Instruction 5420.174D of 22 December 2004, Naval Discharge Review
Board (NDRB) Procedures and Standards, Part V, Para 502, Propriety.

F. Secretary of the Navy Instruction 5420.174D of 22 December 2004, Naval Discharge Review
Board (NDRB) Procedures and Standards, Part V, Para 503, Equity.




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Docket No. MD05-00452


                    PART IV - INFORMATION FOR THE APPLICANT


If you believe that the decision in your case is unclear, not responsive to the issues you raised, or
does not otherwise comport with the decisional document requirements of DoD Directive
1332.28, you may submit a complaint in accordance with Enclosure (5) of that Directive. You
should read Enclosure (5) of the Directive before submitting such a complaint. The complaint
procedure does not permit a challenge of the merits of the decision; it is designed solely to ensure
that the decisional documents meet applicable requirements for clarity and responsiveness. You
may view DoD Directive 1332.28 and other Decisional Documents by going online at
“http://Boards.law.af.mil”.

The names, and votes of the members of the Board are recorded on the original of this document
and may be obtained from the service records by writing to:

               Secretary of the Navy Council of Review Boards
               Attn: Naval Discharge Review Board
               720 Kennon Street SE Rm 309
               Washington Navy Yard DC 20374-5023




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