Written By Louise Freeman

August 11, 2017

Katie after laser surgery

At approximately 5:10 p.m. on September 7, 2016, a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (NP) at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, heard screaming from an office adjacent to hers at Munson Army Health Center. The civilian NP ran into the hallway and found 26-year-old 1LT Katie Ann Blanchard, an active duty Registered Nurse (RN) and mother of three, on fire from the waist up. (Details of the attack from the FBI Criminal Complaint, dated 8SEP16 can be found here.)

The smell of gasoline filled the hallway. The NP could see another coworker, 54-year-old Clifford Currie, in the office with Katie.  He was clutching a straight-edged razor in one hand and a pair of scissors in the other. Currie, a short, rotund man weighing well over 200 pounds, was screaming at Katie and stabbing at her face even as she was engulfed in flames.

The NP rushed in and attempted to help Katie put out the flames and get away from Currie. Both the NP and Katie fell to the floor while struggling with Currie, who continued to stab at Katie while putting his foot on her neck and hollering incomprehensibly.

A Doctor from a neighboring office heard the commotion and rushed to assist. She and the NP struggled to restrain Currie, who continued to stab at Katie. Even with Katie’s two heroic female co-workers fighting him, Currie was hell-bent on continuing his assault as Katie lay smoldering on the floor.

Currie was finally restrained by a Non-Commissioned Officer who was also among the first to respond to the commotion.

Several of the people who were immediately on the scene of the attack in the hospital reported that they could hear Katie screaming,

                “I told you this would happen!”

When a fireman commented that the smell might indicate that Katie had been chemically burned, Currie shouted out,

               “It’s gasoline, you idiot!”

And as Clifford Currie was being arrested shortly after by the Leavenworth Military Police, he was coherent enough to insist that he needed psychiatric help and wanted to speak to a lawyer.

Screen Shot 2017-06-30 at 12.44.36 AM
Clifford Currie: Employee of American Federation of Government Employees Union

 

This tragedy was altogether preventable.  Prior to the attack, Clifford Currie gave every overt indication that he was a threat to Katie.

Multiple witnesses and coworkers reinforced the fact that Katie felt unsafe around Currie. He had a history of threatening behavior towards her and towards his patients, and Katie requested to have another co-worker present for any and every dealing she had with him. For most of the thirteen months that she worked with Currie, she tried to have him disciplined or removed before his disturbing behavior would eventually escalate to her attempted murder.

Katie was Currie’s immediate supervisor, and she wrote over twenty negative counseling statements for Currie stemming from his consistently abysmal work performance, complaints directly from patients, and his outright negligence in performing his role as the Exceptional Family Member Program Care Coordinator. Katie repeatedly communicated to her command that she felt unsafe with Currie at work, and she felt untrained to deal with his combative attitude and escalating threats.

Currie overtly threatened Katie on multiple occasions prior to the September 7, 2016, attack.

One such incident occurred immediately after she returned from maternity leave in January of 2016, following the birth of her third son. Currie saw Katie doing paperwork. He aggressively thrust himself within inches of her face, and screamed,

                   “No no no no! Get the f*** away!”

Katie was forced to call a “Code Green” in order for hospital security to stop Currie’s tirade. (Code Green stands for, “A Combative person using physical force, who may be armed.”)

Currie left the hospital campus immediately following this episode, but Katie’s Section Chief (First Line Supervisor) refused to support Katie in her pursuit to discipline or even to counsel Currie after the incident—insisting it “wasn’t a big deal.”

Nothing was done.

Currie continued to demonstrate a pattern of unpredictable, unhinged, and threatening behavior.

Katie continually asked for additional training for dealing with high conflict situations, but was told by her superiors that she was too junior an officer to benefit from any additional training of that kind.

Meanwhile, Currie was vocal about his contempt for Katie as his supervisor and as a woman who intended to have a family; and he appeared emboldened by the lack of disciplinary action.

Katie did not feel safe at work.

She told her Section Chief this numerous times—nothing was done.

When Katie’s initial Section Chief transferred from Leavenworth, her new Section Chief took Katie’s pleas for help seriously. She endeavored to stop Currie before he escalated by going to the next Officer in the Chain of Command. But this Section Chief’s effort to put a stop to Currie’s behavior using the proper protocol was met with an admonishment that both she and Katie were acting irrationally as women and needed to come with facts—and not emotions.

This bureaucratic lack of action paved the way for Clifford Currie, a member of the American Federation of Government Employees Union which supplies civilian personnel to Munson Army Health Center, to attempt to carry out the murder of 1LT Katie Ann Blanchard.

Screen Shot 2017-07-06 at 1.15.08 PM
Katie in the hospital just days after surviving Currie’s attempt to murder her

Katie’s intellect, persistence, and resolve, combined with the heroics of her coworkers, are the only reasons she survived this malicious attack. But in her recovery, Katie’s trials continue as she now navigates the military’s own brand of red tape.
Katie smile

Katie is currently stationed at the Warrior Transition Unit (WTU) in San Antonio, Texas.

This facility is touted as the leading domicile for wounded Soldiers, yet the climate at the WTU is anything but nurturing for this survivor of a vicious attempted murder.

As a family, Katie and her husband, also an active-duty Officer, decided their three young sons, ages 6, 2, and 1, should live with Katie on post in San Antonio during her care at the Warrior Transition Unit. Separating Katie from her boys during her recovery was not an option. The couple came to this critical decision with the personal assurances of Katie’s care team that Katie and her boys had their full support. With Katie’s extensive burn injuries and rigorous medical schedule, in-home childcare is a necessity.

katie boys

Under normal circumstances when a Soldier is catastrophically injured as Katie was, a benefit called TSGLI (Traumatic Injury Coverage) is almost immediately awarded to cover personal expenses such as travel and childcare. This benefit is a part of military life insurance (SGLI), the premiums for which are automatically deducted from each paycheck. This policy is intended to help relieve any financial burden a Soldier might encounter when recovering from injury.

Katie’s application to receive this benefit was first submitted by her burn doctor at the University of Kansas in September of 2016, immediately after the attempted murder. But Katie’s doctor was told the application was rejected because only one staffer was authorized to process the application, and that person was “unavailable.” In subsequent follow-ups, Katie, her family members, and her medical team were repeatedly told that they had to “just catch” that single person who could process her TSGLI application– and that appointments with that person were not available.

In November of 2016, Katie’s application was finally accepted, but it was then somehow “lost” until February 2017.  As of this writing (July 2017) Katie has yet to receive her TSGLI.

Katie requested a second opinion for the treatment of her facial burns, and was accepted as a into Operation Mend, out of UCLA in California–  a program that regularly works with severely injured service-members. Katie was offered a free evaluation (and potentially specialized treatment) through this program, at no cost to the Army, and with the enthusiastic approval of her medical team in San Antonio. When the time came for Katie’s command to sign off on this however, they administratively blocked her from the program with no explanation.

Because of the military’s continual failure to pay out the benefit Katie has earned and paid for, Katie pays for in-home childcare out of pocket– a massive expense that is absolutely necessary for her and her family’s well-being. Katie is allowed to drop her boys off at on-post group daycare when her in-home help cannot accommodate her medical schedule; however, on-post daycare hours and availability are limited and end mid-afternoon.

With over 20% of her body burned in the attack, Katie understandably experiences Post Traumatic Stress symptoms including memory loss, which can inhibit her ability to perform tasks necessary for the care of her children and herself. In-home help is a necessity. While the Army won’t help finance Katie’s in-home daycare, and her TSGLI application remains in limbo, Katie has relied heavily on a Non-Medical Attendant (NMA). Having an NMA is crucial for Katie’s continuing recovery—which includes at-home physical therapy, post-surgical care (for numerous surgeries she’s had and will have in the future), and everyday tasks that require assistance due to the extensive burns on her arms, hands and face.

To add to her difficulties, Katie was recently informed by her medical team that unless she agrees to wear compression garments (thick, restrictive garments) 23 hour a day, in the 100 degree plus heat of San Antonio, she will lose her Non-Medical Attendant. Being forced to wear these garments makes outdoor activities with her three boys as well as riding her horse—Katie’s only therapeutic reprieve–impossible.

Additionally, Katie has been denied access to her Warrior Transition Unit Multi-Disciplinary Meetings; and she was informed that the Army’s “interpretation of Brooks Army Medical patient rights and HIPPA laws,” meant that she can be excluded from any discussions about her own care—with the exception of a ten-minute period at the end of these meetings when she is to be briefed on what was discussed.

The members of the very unit set up to take care of Katie and other Wounded Warriors have also taken a decidedly adversarial attitude that includes giving Katie unsolicited advice about possibly “losing” her medical retirement and submitting ambiguous and nonsensical counseling statements for “violations” like missing one appointment (in hundreds) after a scheduling error–despite the fact that Katie immediately called when she was notified about the mistake. She was also written up for driving–in spite of being medically cleared to do so by her doctor.

Katie

Too many of the military’s actions and inactions have led to 1LT Katie Ann Blanchard’s life being further damaged even after Clifford Currie mutilated her on September 7, 2016.

The repeated and inexcusable failure of Katie’s immediate command element to first listen to and then to care for this Soldier—both at Munson Army Health Center in Leavenworth, Kansas and presently at the Warrior Transition Unit in San Antonio, Texas— has allowed for grievous injury upon this innocent woman.

Katie mom
Katie with her mother in happier times

1LT Katie Ann Blanchard, United State’s Army Nurse Corps, will forever look in the mirror and be reminded of the criminal incompetence of the individual members of her toxic command climate who allowed the attack to happen. Clifford Currie was found guilty this week in Federal Court of Assault with Intent to Commit Murder. Yet, the U.S. Army’s gross negligence concerning 1LT Blanchard’s healthcare and personal welfare inexplicably continues to-date at the WTU.

1LT Katie Blanchard was enthusiastically following in the footsteps of her mother, also an active-duty Army Nurse.  Despite her trials of the last year, and the perpetual pain she suffers, Katie’s passion for nursing remains intact. She plans to return to the care of others when her own recovery is complete. She believes her current challenges are simply a brief interruption in her lifelong career of service in the medical field.

But the Army which Katie so faithfully serves continues failing to serve her.

1LT Katie Ann Blanchard deserves to have her story told. Please support her by sharing this article, and by following Katie’s recovery at https://www.facebook.com/KatieAnnBlanchard.

Katie DA photo
1LT Katie Ann Blanchard pictured in her DA Photo before and after the attack

 

 

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any agency of the U.S. government. Examples of analysis performed within this article are only examples. Assumptions made within the analysis are not reflective of the position of any U.S. government entity.

166 thoughts on “Toxic Command: US Army Ignores Nurse’s Yearlong Pleas for Help; 1LT Survives Attempted Murder by Deranged Civilian

  1. She needs to write a congressional complaint at this point. Her case worker along with her chain of command and the ARMY as a whole are failing her😠😒 This is beyond disgusting

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Obviously, you suffer from extreme bias that does not allow you to realize that there is such extreme bias against females in the military and many other companies. It does not have anything to do with Obama. Obama always demonstrated respect for all people unlike you!

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I’ve been in 16 years, prior to President Obama, and it has ALWAYS been this way. It’s not the president it’s the culture and cultural changes are met with defense and opposition.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. This nonsense has been going on prior to Obama. I am a veteran and served in the Army before Obama was ever in office so lets not try to blame one person for this injustice. There is a lot of politics, red tape, and cover up that occurs in the military. I have experienced and witnessed first hand.😳

        Liked by 1 person

      4. It’s the command system not Obama. If you haven’t been in the Army then don’t act like you know how things work. I was deployed twice and the command fail personnel left and right, she will eventually find someone in JAG that will help her. God bless her recovery and leave your hateful comments to yourself.

        Liked by 2 people

      5. Oh yes terry, CLEARLY the man who attacked Katie, along with the entire American Army, are not to blame here, it’s OBAMA’S fault! Prior to 2008 the Army was completely infallable, there were no cultural, gender or other biases of any, there was no bureaucratic red tape, no difficulty in officers all having equal treatment or receiving even the most fundamental medical and psychilogical care owed them. Perhaps you should remove your Fox News colored goggles & try, just TRY, viewing the world from a few other perspectives.

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      6. This has nothing to do with Obama’s military. This type of thing has been going on for decades long before Obama was president. Not only is there discrimination for females and other minorities, depending on who is around there is also those commanders/supervisors the pass the buck to save a buck to make their section look good. Not only the Army but other services as well. I am sorry to say it is the unscrupulous people that give out Military a bad reputation.

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      7. Yes, I would have to say that you are right, Terry. Although the Army is a big, lumbering bureaucracy that traditionally — as the saying goes — eats its young, those conditions grew exponentially worse under Obama and his efforts to “fundamentally transform” the military into an organization of Social Justice Warriors. Title 5 (civilian) unions, hyphenated-Americans, and the incessant “diversity” crowd have relentlessly endeavored to undermine the military’s mission to protect and defend the Constitution, and supplant it with an aggressive, violent cadre of subversives bent on our destruction. Curry was an Obama SJW Warrior in this effort and 1Lt Blanchard was an unfortunate casualty. What I wonder, however, as a former active duty officer, is why her husband hasn’t bombarded that turncoat fucktard John McPain with daily letters demanding Congressional Action on the TSGLI application. The former president Obama (sired by a Muslim father, reared by a Marxist mother, registered as a Muslim in Indonesia by a Muslim step-father, influenced by a Marxist radical from Chicago, traveled around the world on a passport issued by who-knows-whom, claimed to be born in Kenya on his first book jacket, and met hundreds of times with representatives of al Ikhwan al Muslimin (The Muslim Brotherhood) while he occupied the White House) worked tirelessly to promote the conditions that enabled this horrific crime. His public embrace of Occupy Wall Street (rape tents, anyone?), Black Lives Matter, and various other Soros-funded movements merely emboldened the leftist f*&%$#%ds infesting the bureaucracy. So yes, although the Army has always eaten its young, Obama ensured that decent Americans like 1Lt Blanchard would be victimized first by his unionized SJW warriors, and then victimized again by a system that values diversity over merit, and rewards the lazy, weak and subversive.

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      8. Wrong Terry. Stop making this political. I am a female veteran who has received amazing medical care, surgeries and follow-up treatment by my local Veterans Hospital. I retired in 2008. Focus on this woman and the people at the hospital where she was attacked and the Warrior Treatment Unit who both failed her.

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      9. Way to make a personal tragedy partisan, a$$hole. Newsflash – women get harassed and assaulted daily! Obama has nothing to do with this.

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    1. Agreed, 100%! I want to know what happened to Currie as a result of this… He should either serve life in prison, or get the death penalty, IMO. What happened to this woman, and the fact that there were NUMEROUS red flags leading up to this incident, and the way she has been treated SINCE the tragic event by our OWN government who is supposed to protect and care for her, is UNFORGIVABLE!!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. This is absolutely ridiculous. She is now being assaulted by the Army. Provide all benefits and treatment for this woman. Make it retroactive.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. What happened & is happening to her is inconceivable. First off it just goes to show the overwhelming power & control employee unions have in the federal gov’t setting. Strong reason why it’s so difficult to fix the VA healthcare system. Second, it also goes to show how a few bad apples in the military setting can make someone’s life, especially a recovering patient, a living hell. On another note as a former nurse that worked at the burn unit at Ft Sam I strongly encourage her to wear her compression garments if she wants to stand any chance of healing quickly & properly with the minimal amount of additional surgeries. I’ve seen far too many burn patients that had one excuse or another for why they couldn’t where theirs. It’s toi hot, it’s too cold, it’s uncomfortable, it itches, I don’t like the way it looks, & on & on. The doctors have ordered them for her to wear for a reason, to prevent the formation of large & thick fibrous scar tissue. If it develops it can mean additional surgeries to remove it & possibly further skin grafts meaning additional scar areas where donor skin is taken from. The scar tissue, if allowed to go unabated & depending on location especially around areas like the mouth or eyes, can begin to involve deeper muscle & connective tissue which can make opening & closing the eyes or mouth extremely difficult & painful as well as far more disfiguring. As a nurse herself she should know how important it is for a patient to follow doctor’s orders. Burn treatment & rehabilitation is an extremely specialized field. Their treatment plan is well devoloped & unfortunately for independent minded patients very strict but also very necessary for proper healing.

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      1. C’mon now, from one ex-nurse to another: show some compassion, those aren’t “excuses”, they’re facts – compression garments do itch, they are hot, they do look strange, they are uncomfortable. Sometimes it’s not possible for a patient to comply as fully with treatment as we’d like, not because they are being difficult, but because their circumstances are difficult. And honestly, when the care providers are adversarial or punitive, as Lt Blanchard’s seem to be, patients who care very much about their recovery might have some trouble feeling like they’re even part of the team, much less being inspired to take on the lion’s share of the recovery work. That’s before you even get into the negative effects that PTSD has on patients’ capacity to follow their care protocols, or the effect of sleep deprivation (have you ever tried to sleep in neoprene? even in a room with glacial A/C, it’s a sweaty business.)

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Couldn’t she get proper treatment in a facility located in a cooler place than San Antonio? Do you know how hot it is in San Antonio? It is NOT just a matter of comfort…but life and death! People DIE of the heat in Texas

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    3. Her Congressman should be a great help In her quest for proper recovery care, both mentally and physically.
      The Army staff “caring” for her should be reprimanded! She should be transferred to another facility. I know that Brooke Army Hospital is a burn care center, but is this the best place for her? Doesn’t sound like the Medical Service I served in when I was active duty as a medic.

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  2. I’m so sorry that you’ve gone through all this. Burn care, management and post wound care is monumental. The fact that Katie has been denied supplemental treatments is unconscionable. As a former Burn care RN I truly feel for Katie and all she’s been through.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. That is so typical of the military. This poor lady deserves compensation far beyond what she has received. This is just a typical military mess with each on passing the buck. I hope this brave nurse gets the attention she is due and this gives the military another black eye.
    Good luck Lt. Blanchard.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The disclaimer is so pathetic and another attempt to bury a gross mistake rather than take steps to correct it and make sure this can’t happen again. The individuals involved on the government side should not be reprimanded, instead they MUST be Fired with no expectations of an annuity or if in the Army with a dishonorable discharge. I would also include any individual – regardless of military or GSM grade who even silently entertains retribution.

    SECARMY this should never have happened and should not be allowed to be politicized by WH!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. LTC Rosenthal,

      You know as I learned, the desire to ‘meet the needs of the Army’ too often outweigh the needs of the service-member.

      I have been before the board, and my lawyer lied to my face. BUT, back then there was no blogging to get concerned people writing letters to help.

      I pray this LT gets help from powerful people. She needs it.

      Wayne

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  5. Someone should sit down and write a letter to the president sense she can’t because he is in her chain of command.just tell him the fact of her order then he can call the right people and get something done

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    1. Right. Because the current president is such a wonderful example and will take responsibility for making sure the military does the right thing for a now-disfigured woman…

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    2. Did that today. Have also contacted ebery representative in CO (where I libe), Texas (where I am fom) and KS, (where it occurred).

      Is she able to contact her representative or does someone else have to do it? I also contacted Maj Pain of One Marine’s View and he is contacting a lot of folks. He called the hotline of the TI Rights andmthey told him that she needed to contact her rep.

      Has anyone contacted Louie Gohmert or Ted Cuz?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Funny how this story gets the well deserved attention it needs, However, daily spouses are continuing to report abuse by the service member all while these reports are ignored, swept under the rug, and are later attacked, stalked, and even murdered and yet you never hear these stories written about or even talked about.

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    1. I respectfully disagree with you.
      Katie’s story was mentioned very briefly by only a couple media outlets in the aftermath of her attack in September. Those few that did report omitted her active-duty status as an Army nurse– referring to her as simply a hospital employee.
      Some outlets went back and changed those mentions (after public pressure), but almost no follow up was done.

      It took decisive organic efforts from veteran pages to push out what happened to Katie for the national media to pay attention.

      The Army has done what it can to keep her and others involved silent.

      I empathize with what sounds like a horrible ordeal for you– and domestic violence should always be taken seriously and prosecuted (no matter who is committing it).

      However, Katie’s story is a uniquely grotesque example specifically of toxic leadership within the ranks failing to take care of its own people. She wasn’t in a war zone, she was in Kansas trying to do her job taking care of people.
      ~LF

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  7. This is unconscionable. This should never happen in the United States let alone in the military that protects and cares for us. I pray that all superior officers and those involved in this travesty of misjustice are held accountable. Nothing can undo this. I can’t believe this can even happen in today’s world.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Our military is a MUST and in some ways they are compensated very well but in the area of health care, the Military is severely lacking. My oldest daughter, who is married to a military man, tried for months & months to tell her doctors that she believed the problems she was suffering was because of her gall bladder. Finally, they had to admit that she was right. She had surgery but things were not right. She called me, Mom, and I flew to Texas with a round trip ticket to return 3 days later. I didn’t get on that flight. To make a long story short, my daughter ended up having 5 surgeries and was in 5 different hospitals. I still believe to this day, that had I not taken FMLA from my job, that I would have lost my first born. I was there to be her Mama Bear and to make sure that her care was attended to. I refused to let the Military Scare Me. Think I put a lil scare in them instead.

      Then my youngest daughter joined the Navy a few years back and during Boot Camp, one of her shoulders could not hold up to carrying the heavy packs they have to train with and so she was put out. You think they appreciated the fact that she tried to serve her country…..No, they tried to Convict her of fraud. So not only does she have a weak shoulder now, she also isn’t covered for any medical problems with it unless it is thru individual coverage.

      Katie DESERVES to have ALL her healthcare taken care of by the Military and if they can’t let her husband attend to the children while she is being taken care of then they should handle that as well. I truly wish the best for her. I don’t have faith in the medical treatment thru the military tho. My granddaughter’s foot will never be as it should be since her bunion surgery had to be done thru a military hospital. Actually, she has had 2 surgeries on it.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. 1LT Katie Ann Blanchard,

    I was an NCO 3rd ID A/203 Fort Benning, GA. I went thru my own neglect, abuse
    of rank leading to demotion in rank, but Medically Honorable discharged. My story is not even close or near what your going through.

    Emotionally, speaking. The strain, betrayal with command leadership, not doing the right thing. I view you as a soldier of courage. I am certain you will reach your goal of justice.
    CID must be really looking deep into this crime.

    Ma’am, I am proud of your strength. Your determination is unending. Our Soldier Creed portion:

    I will never accept defeat.

    I will never quit.

    I will never leave a fallen comrade.

    I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills.

    I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.

    I am an expert and I am a professional.

    Please write a book about your experience. Maybe a movie? When your children get

    older, they will understand.

    Jesus Christ protect you,

    Lori Oetzel
    United States Army
    (veteran)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Wrote him tonight. H does seem to have a heart for our military.

      The POS that assaultedmher will get all the mental health help he needs. I’d like t
      o see him drawn and quartered.

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  9. This is a A TOTAL LEADERSHIP FAILURE! Just in case nothing has been put into action, Ive made some calls. Read more here-https://onemarinesview.com/2017/08/13/toxic-command-us-army-ignores-nurses-yearlong-pleas-for-help/
    Also, if any changes develop, don’t hesitate to contact me through http://www.onemarinesview.com. I have over 2million visitors and aprox 1,000 visitors a day. I can get the word out and already started kicking bushes as described in the article. Let me know how I can help.
    Maj Pain

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Not a problem at all.
        Easy enough, feel free to contact your Congress man about this. Yup, just email them a link to this post and ask them to look into it (ya know you can do that right?) as a concerned citizen and yes, they work for you. Contact them here https://www.house.gov/
        I will be calling the Joint Forces Headquarters- Washington, DC – Inspecting General as well to see just by chance they know about this case and would like to comment. Feel free to do the same.  (202) 685-3321/3322 Hell, call them multiple times a day until something gets done.
        Contact the GI Rights Hotline – Email girights@girightshotline.org or call them at 1877-447-4487 on your own behalf as a concerned citizen and ask them if they have ANY knowledge about this case. I’ve emailed them , the Warrior Care (warriorcare@osd.mil ) and the IG to ask them if they would like to comment on the situation. Should be a hoot! Feel free to do the same.

        Liked by 2 people

  10. I’ve personally dealt with the inept red tape at BAMC. Recommend the LT email the Chief Medical Officer directly – Col Pendergrass, timothy.l.pendergrass3.mil@mail.mil

    The LT also needs to file a congressional complaint regarding the TSGLI. Her complaint will get better traction that way.

    Finally, her dependents can sue the Army for damages as they have been deeply impacted by the attack on the LT. The law suit will take years to settle but it will be the only way to hold the Army accountable for their gross negligence and failing to ensure a safe work place.

    Prayers to her family for strength and perseverance.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Katie, I am so sorry and so mad that all of this is happening to you. I am a civilian FNP, former DA civilian FNP and former active duty Army Nurse-66H. I saw a toxic environment in each Hospital/ clinic I worked, Landstuhl, Ft. Drum and Ft. Belvoir. So many hostile civilian male employees. Nothing could ever be done because they were in the union. This is such a travesty. I was sexually harassed at FBCH both by AD and civilian male co workers, yet I was the one that was disciplined. Sadly, This is just another example of female abuse by men, if his supervision was male none of this would have happened. Ridiculous that it is 2017 and violence against women is still such a problem. I hope he got life in prison.

    I was under the impression that family members could sue the service for you, but I guess I am wrong. Even those family members that are no longer AD? Also, can there not be any criminal charges brought against those in command for letting this behavior of his escalate? What about discipline military actions for their neglect? Surely there has to be some way to discipline the chain of command?

    Also, my then active duty husband is a cancer survivor. We were able to fight and get him a 2 nd opinion at a civilian cancer center, instead of just trusting WRAMC. Is there no way of getting that 2 no opinion? It is actually stated as a patients right from Tricare.

    I will definitely share this story and write my representatives,

    God Bless you and your family

    Pattie

    Liked by 1 person

  12. It is so said, that in our country where we talk, equally, that there is such extreme examples of bias. Women still labeled as emotional and not able to deal with situations. These men in command clearly lack the real skills and abilities to lead people!

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  13. Unbelievable! The strength and courage this Soldier and family have demonstrated is beyond imagination. It is true, we speak of leadership in tht Army, but the reality is that we have very few leaders. It takes a great deal of strength and courage to lead. It is much easier to sweep dirt under the rug and that’s the cowards way. Keep it strong, it won’t make you friends but you sure will be respected!!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. That’s the military for you. You do what you can & must do for them & in return they try to do Nothing for you. This is mainly why a lot of the veteran are killing themselves because their getting no help from the ppl (system) that they believed in & help.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I hope you stay the course on this it will be hard you have a entire powerful organization working to disprove your account.
    I also had a parallel but not as horrific or extensive as yours.
    It changed my life and has left me with a lifelong disease which could have been prevented.
    It is my lifelong regret that I did not continue to pursue accountability after my retirement.
    A couple of things for you to remember
    1. You pose a real threat to the COC and frankly the entire AMEDD. You are one of them. You know how the inner workers are supposed to operate, you have other AMEDD personal willing to fight for you, you are a Officer with a strong record.
    Because you pose a real threat the fight will be.vicious and ugly.
    2. The WTU were absolutely created to control Soldiers not help them. I was around during there creation and implementation oversaw the first one at that locale. Their existence is to ensure no negative PR.
    BE subtle with your battle with them. Ask for mtg with the COC and document document document. Ask to have an advocate go with you to all mtg.
    3. It is.going.to be a tough slog, I’m there with you. I will do anything you need for assistance.
    4. If you don’t stop them they will continue to ruin careers and get people hurt.
    5. You have millions looking out for you and a sympathetic media.
    6. Get to know everything you can about whistleblower.
    Let me know if there is anything you need D Dickson Retired AN
    DIckson

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  16. Hi Katie
    You are such a true warrior. I am going to tell you not to give up the fight. I had a parallel but not as devastating or horrific as yours with AMEDD leadership. I am left with a permanent medical condition which can be debilitating at times. Which could have been prevented.
    Do not give up this fight demanding accountability, I gave up too soon and it will be a lifelong regret.
    A few things
    1. You pose a real threat to the entire command structure. You are one of them, with inside knowledge of personal and SOP. You are an officer that many inside the command respect and will go to bat for you.
    2. Do not be afraid to use the whistleblower act. Remember all the agencies set up to help Soldiers work for the DOD and therefore will not be help.
    3. The system is not geared to personal accountability. You are swimming upstream.
    The WTU was not created to help Soldiers but to control Soldiers. I was there during the creation and implementation and oversaw the first one at my duty station.
    You need to get your frustration documented, get appointments with CoC ask to have an advocate go with you and document document document.
    4. You have a mountain of frustration ahead of you trying to hold anyone accountable, don’t give up. THink of how many others will be affected by having these incompetent leaders in their CoC.
    On a lighter note I am also a horse enthusiasts and if you want to do an endurance ride, let me I’m in Oklahoma and frequently go to TX, I have a horse for you.
    D Dickson Retired AN

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Julie– Start with contacting your representatives and Katies. She’s currently in Texas, but has lived in Kansas, New York, and Washington State. The more people who rattle these cages, the more likely someone who can make a real change and/or POTUS will pick it up. Another reader gave this advice for taking action:
      “Contact them here https://www.house.gov/
      I will be calling the Joint Forces Headquarters- Washington, DC – Inspecting General as well to see just by chance they know about this case and would like to comment. Feel free to do the same. (202) 685-3321/3322
      Hell, call them multiple times a day until something gets done.
      Contact the GI Rights Hotline – Email girights@girightshotline.org or call them at 1877-447-4487 on your own behalf as a concerned citizen and ask them if they have ANY knowledge about this case. I’ve emailed them , the Warrior Care (warriorcare@osd.mil ) and the IG to ask them if they would like to comment on the situation.”

      Any and all action on the part of the public can only serve to help 1LT Blanchard.

      Like

    2. Hi Julie, we’ve been getting a great response both to this article, and the numerous others shared about Katie. One hopes that the POTUS or SECDEF will eventually get wind of what’s going on– and we know Marines right wrongs (I’m an Army vet, but my Grandad taught me that). Please share, contact your elected representatives, ask your local and national news to cover this story. Thank you for reading, and caring! ~LF

      Like

  17. Intervention by Mr. Trump is called for right now. Please contact him…he’s on Twitter and although his office is a shambles presently, the info will get to him. He can and will do something about it to assist this Soldier.

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  18. This sort of thing is not limited to the Nursing Corps; it is common to most if not all women who serve in our country’s uniform. I agree with Lori Oetzel and others here on this forum. This is an egregious failure of Lt. Blanchard’s chain of command, so she needs to “jump” it and start from the top down.

    Like

  19. While a Navy surgeon (serving with USMC)at Camp Lejeune I was involved in getting a brain injured Army trooper ( at his dad’s home in Havelock) to Northwestern University Medical Center for operative treatment which was voluntary and they all made it free of charge.It was unavailable in the military health system. A friend of our Commanding General’s wife said she knew a friend of the family and the Army wouldn’t fund the Sgt’s airfare. I couldn’t believe it! Our Chief of Staff at MARSOC called USAF and they jerked around, all the time Northwestern is asking..”where is the Sgt.?” Finally I called the 2nd Marine Air Wing Chief of Staff at Cherry Point who had him on a USMC VIP jet in 2 days VFR direct to the medical center and the break thru care awaiting for him, free I might add again. I still see the Sgt occasionally on television when they highlight traumatic brain patients and recovery etc. I saw the city of Havelock built him a house designed to acommodate his neurological shortfalls. I’ll never forget the lack of attention, caring and just downright neglect we saw with the Army as well as the lax attitude by the USAF who could have done it in a jiffy. All talk, no do. When I got to Cherry Point flight line he had already left but a lengthy red carpet was still there. I was told by a Marine that the Sgt in a wheelchair and his father were escorted to the plane on that carpet and 20 Marines were positioned on each side and they saluted him as he was wheeled to the plane. God Bless the Marines. We only heard about it from a friend of a friend of our CG’s wife. Someone cared.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. It is good for your story to be told. Hopefully you will be given all that is due you medically, financially, to include your and your families suffering. This never should have happened; I hope everyone who reads this will show and tell and really help you. May God Bless you and yours.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. I want to know what her leadership has to say? To be this negligent for so long and continually act so after such a horrific act there has to be an underlying issue, right? Even if its wrong, what is it they are not telling?

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    1. Susan, some local media in Kansas City took notice during the Federal trial (but not until an organic push by a veteran group that really pushed a message of support for her that went viral). I think part of the issue is the military wants to keep these types of issues in-house– thus getting information is close to impossible.

      I spoke to a KC reporter who did an interview after the trial– and he was astonished that I had a mugshot of Clifford Currie. He was told he couldn’t attain a copy for “security reasons” even after the trial. Other employees at Munson have alluded to being afraid to speak out because of reprisals.

      Like

  22. Gabby, your August 14th comment says, to the person you are verbally attacking, that they should “try, just TRY, viewing the world from a few other perspectives.” I think that is a GREAT comment. It’s just a shame that in the sentence before this comment you act completely contrary to your own advice and show your own bigotry with your comment to “remove your Fox News colored goggles.” How do you know this person watches Fox News? Are you psychic or just a person who shows no respect for any opinion but your own? I served and retired from active duty Army. I know all about how women are treated in the military. I know all about the prejudice…and I sure get aggravated not only at it but also when I hear someone who is obviously liberal attack anyone who isn’t because of their own prejudice…let SHE who is without sin cast the first stone (and that, my dear, would not be you…)

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  23. All I can do is SMH. The military is to protect us Americans and they don’t even protect their own soldiers. How disheartening. It bring tears to ones eyes. I hope someone with some power out their look into this matter. She should contact Dateline/News Media and I bet they will do something. We as people need to stand up and others should be held accountable for what they do. All this could have been unavoidable if her Chain of Command would have cared!!

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  24. For those helping the LT.

    Be CAREFUL what you recommend. Legal advice on the internet is what you pay for – CHEAP.

    For the LT:

    I had to overnight letters – that way I got the letters there, and got receipts. I overnighted and faxed the SAME letters (CC) to the ‘Chain-of-Command’ notifying the leadership of the coming Senatorial phone calls.

    Unfortunately, the Senator was an Obama supporter. And her office actually tried to shut my complaint down.

    BUT, the civilian boss appreciated the heads up, and he had contacted some offending people before the Senator could injure this Veteran further.

    You should be able to get a ‘cease and desist’ of medical harassment from a Chaplain, or professional counselor at BAMC.

    If you need help with finding a Chaplain, contact me.

    May God bless you and your family as you struggle through this.

    Wayne

    Like

  25. Clock is ticking. I have submitted a request for a Congressional Inquiry which any US citizen can initiate and your representative will contact the military unit and have 24 hours to respond to the Congressional representative. Time is ticking…….

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  26. What a shameful brutal treatment this poor woman has received! It is appalling that any human being could be so mistreated.

    I had a hard time reading this account of her betrayal.

    I despise injustice. I will do what I can to bring this to a major media news outlet if they have
    the brass to air it!

    In the meantime she will be in my prayers and here is one for her, and it is biblical,
    “LORD, LET MY ENEMIES FALL BY THEIR
    OWN DEVICES”!
    God Bless you Katie Ann Blanchard!

    Like

  27. Every member of her upper chain of command should be disciplined. What a bunch of lowlife. If they can’t do there job then they should get out of the military. (After they lose some rank.)

    Like

  28. I hope LT Blanchard gets the help and care she needs. She shouldn’t have been put in this position in the first place! That psycho should have never been allowed to go on like that.

    Like

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