Joint Base Lewis McChord

Business
11:02 pm
Thu January 9, 2014

Forecast for Pierce County's Economy in 2014: Partly Sunny

It’s taking longer for Pierce County to bounce back from the recession than counties to the north, such as King and Snohomish. But economists at Pacific Lutheran University expect the economy in Tacoma and the region to show some improvement this year. 

PLU economists Martin Wurm and Neal Johnson have been crunching the numbers on everything from Pierce County’s housing market to retail sales to come up with an economic forecast. 

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Legal rights
4:16 pm
Wed September 11, 2013

New Legal Resource Guide to Help Military in Washington

Paula Wissel

The state attorney general has compiled a new Military and Veteran Legal Resource Guide aimed at helping active-duty soldiers and veterans learn about their legal rights.

Military personnel and veterans have a number of special legal rights when it comes to such things as interest rates on home loans or getting out of rental agreements. The problem, according to Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson, is too many people are unaware of these protections.

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War in Afghanistan
10:33 pm
Sun March 11, 2012

Shock, concern are reactions at Joint Base Lewis-McChord over Afghanistan killings

Private First Class Jeremy Lozano is getting ready for his first deployment to Afghanistan. He anticipates the massacre of innocent civilians will make an already tough deployment tougher. “That’s now more problems that we have to worry about.”
Austin Jenkins Northwest News Network

LAKEWOOD, Wash. – The U-S soldier who allegedly massacred at least 16 Afghan civilians is reported to be from Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Soldiers assigned to the base express shock at the violence and concern about retaliation.

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War in Afghanistan
2:55 pm
Sun March 11, 2012

Suspect in killing of 16 Afghans was from Fort Lewis

An Afghan soldier is seen in a guard tower at a military base as civilians gather outside in Panjwai, Kandahar province south of Kabul, Afghanistan, on Sunday.
The Associated Press

WASHINGTON — A U.S. official says the American who killed 16 Afghan villagers Sunday is a soldier from Washington who was assigned to a remote special operations site.

A senior U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing, added that the suspect is married and has two children. He served three tours in Iraq, and had been serving his first deployment in Afghanistan since December.

U.S. officials say the soldier acted alone, leaving his base in southern Afghanistan and opening fire on sleeping families in two villages.

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The Two-Way
12:23 pm
Thu January 26, 2012

Pentagon proposes cutting 100,000 ground troops

Originally published on Thu January 26, 2012 12:18 pm

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced that the the Pentagon will propose a $33 billion cut in the military's budget, for the 2013 fiscal year.

The AP reports that will be achieved by reducing ground forces by 100,000 and by eliminating older aircraft.

The AP reports:

"Defense Secretary Leon Panetta tells a Pentagon news conference the administration will request a 2013 budget of $525 billion, plus another $88 billion for operations in Afghanistan. Combined, those totals are about $33 billion less than the Pentagon is spending this year.

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Returning from Iraq
11:10 am
Wed December 7, 2011

Final wave of NW soldiers welcomed home from Iraq

Keicher Singleton Jr. awaits his dad from a six month deployment to Iraq.
Tom Banse Northwest News Network

As of this morning, there are fewer than 100 Northwest-based soldiers serving in Iraq. A plane carrying the final large group of returning soldiers touched down at McChord Field near Tacoma at dusk Tuesday. 

The sweetest words for 170 Joint Base Lewis-McChord soldiers and their families: "Captain, dismissed!"

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Military service
10:55 am
Mon November 28, 2011

Military's brain-testing program a debacle

Dr. Alex Dromerick co-directs the Brain Research Center at the National Rehabilitation Hospital. Here he observes Stephen Jones, a policeman who was involved in a motorcycle accident.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

Originally published on Fri December 2, 2011 1:20 pm

The U.S. military has spent more than $42 million to test every service member's brain to find out who suffered a traumatic brain injury, or TBI, during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. But an investigation by NPR and ProPublica has found that military leaders are refusing to carry out the testing program as Congress ordered. Partly as a result, the program that was supposed to fix things has hardly helped any of the troops.

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Law
4:35 pm
Thu July 21, 2011

Alleged "kill team" leader back in court

Pvt. Jeremy Morlock's testimony has become crucial to the prosecution's case.
Courtesy of the U.S. Army

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. – The credibility of the prosecution's star witness is the key issue at the moment in a war crimes case unfolding at Joint Base Lewis-McChord near Tacoma. A second pre-trial hearing got underway Thursday for the alleged ringleader of a group of Washington-based soldiers accused of murdering Afghan civilians.

This second hearing is a chance for the defense to call witnesses who were not previously available. Chief among them: Army Private Jeremy Morlock of Wasilla, Alaska.

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Medal of Honor
5:44 pm
Tue July 12, 2011

Northwest soldier given nation's highest military honor

President Barack Obama applauds after putting the Medal of Honor around the neck of Sergeant First Class Leroy Petry in a ceremony at the White House Tuesday.
The White House

President Barack Obama hung the Medal of Honor around the neck of Sergeant First Class Leroy Petry, from the Joint Base Lewis McChord, in a ceremony at the White House today.  Petry is assigned to an Army Rangers regiment at Fort Benning, Georgia.

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"Don't Ask, Don't Tell"
4:40 pm
Tue May 10, 2011

Lesbian Air Force Major agrees to retire

Air Force Major Margaret Witt, shown here in December 2010, who challenged her discharge and won the right to be reinstated, will retire with full benefits and have her discharge erased.
Paula Wissel/KPLU

A lesbian Air Force Major who was trying to get her job back has decided to retire instead.  Under an agreement reached with the Pentagon, flight nurse Margaret Witt will retire with full benefits and her discharge will be removed from her record.

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Military
7:42 am
Fri March 25, 2011

Northwest airmen soldiers aiding in Libya operation

A C-17 Globemaster sits on the tarmac with Mt. Rainier in the distance at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Lakewood.
Biggunben Flickr

Some Air Force and Army bases in the Northwest are helping with the Libyan fight. Seven tankers and about 100 airmen from Fairchild Air Force Base are already working in undisclosed locations in support of Operation Odyssey Dawn.

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Afghan War Crimes
7:55 am
Thu March 24, 2011

Soldier sentenced to 24 years for war crimes

Attorney Frank Spinner, left, and other members of Spc. Jeremy Morlock’s defense team speak with reporters following Morlock’s sentencing.
Austin Jenkins N3

A Washington-based soldier has been sentenced to 24-years in prison for killing unarmed civilians in Afghanistan. Specialist Jeremy Morlock pleaded guilty to three counts of premeditated murder and other crimes.

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Army Investigation
9:00 am
Wed March 9, 2011

Army probe finds no deliberate mistreatment of Oregon Guard troops

"Very disappointing." That's how Oregon Senator Ron Wyden describes a series of Army investigations into the treatment of injured Oregon National Guard soldiers last year. Those inquires conclude the Oregon troops were not treated as second class soldiers at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

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Army Suicides
9:23 am
Wed March 2, 2011

50 Joint Base Lewis-McChord suicides since 2002

This is an image from an Army video that's intended to talk directly with soldiers about the topic of suicide and suicide prevention.
U.S. Army

Fifty soldiers from Joint Base Lewis McChord have killed themselves since the start of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Some committed suicide on-base, others off and still others while deployed overseas.  Leaders at JBLM say they’ve dramatically stepped up efforts to combat suicide. But they admit it’s not easy to change Army culture.

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Impact of War at Home
8:00 am
Fri December 3, 2010

Another tragic homecoming for a 5th Stryker Brigade soldier

Spc. Dustin Knapp returned from Afghanistan, but died on a Wisconsin road under mysterious circumstances. His is another tragic death of a 5th Stryker Brigade soldier following the return home.
Courtesy of Mary Jaskolski.

It was national news when a Washington-based soldier just back from Afghanistan died in a shootout with police in Salt Lake City. That was in August. Around the same time another soldier from the same brigade also died violently. But his death didn’t get much notice. It happened on a dark two-lane road in rural Wisconsin.  

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