Up Close and Personal with
SR. CHIEF PETTY OFFICER
of the U.S. NAVY
by Carlin Langley
Over the last few weeks, there has been a lot of interest in the news about certain sex lives of
some of the people who are in our United States Government. One of those people is Sr. Chief
Petty Officer Timothy McVeigh, who has served in the U.S. Navy for 17 years and achieved
the position of Commander of the Boat in the Submarine Corps.
Tim has become an on-line friend of mine and I've been privileged to get to know him through
the medium of the Internet and now talk to him almost every day. I called him at his home in
Honolulu, Hawaii and conducted the following EXCLUSIVE interview with him for EXP
This whole situation started with a simple E-mail message being sent by Tim to an
Ombudsman, who is the liaison between the command of the boat and the wives and families
of the crew of the boat. That message was regarding Christmas presents for the families of his
crew on board the boat which were going to be bought by a USS CHICAGO support group.
Tim said, "I sent the information to the Ombudsman, and went out to sea that same morning.
We were out doing local operations for 10 days and came back into port. When we arrived,
there was a squadron duty officer waiting on the pier, and he wanted me to come back up to
the squadron legal office. And I didn't think that was necessarily unusual. He also had an
envelope regarding a legal matter about one of my crew members, so I thought I was going up
to talk to them about that. Once I got up there, the squadron legal officer asked me to have a
seat, and she put a "Rights Advisement Sheet" in front of me and the charges that were listed
on it were "Sodomy and Indecent Acts". So having no idea what she was talking about, I asked
her if she had any more information about what she was referring to, and she asked me if I
wanted to make a statement. I said no and then again, I asked her if there was any more
information and she then showed me a copy of the profile which at that point she said had
already been verified with AOL as being mine. I chose still not to make a statement, so she
basically said at that point that there was enough information to start an investigation, which
she had already started, and that she was relieving me of my job at that point. So at that point,
I had to get permission to go back on board my submarine to get my belongings which I did."
I then asked him, "How long were you out to sea?" Tim replied, "Uh, ten days." Basically,
while he was out at sea, all of this had taken place and was waiting for him upon his return.
The Navy then held an administrative board hearing wherein the military presented their case,
in which she stated that she had looked at his government file which showed that he was a man
that was not married and had not been married, and the profile which had been verified by
AOL that it did belong to him, and that was the total extent of the government's case against
Tim, which took the government about 1 hour to present. "They couldn't produce any smoking
guns or old boyfriends at all huh?" I asked. "They couldn't produce anything, other than the
two pieces of information that they had before. Then my lawyer started presenting our case
which then took 6 hours. There was alot of evidence that was produced, but it became very
obvious fairly early on at the very beginning that the board was very biased. One of those cases
was when my lawyer asked the legal officer if she had any evidence that there was sodomy or
indecent acts. And she said that she couldn't answer that either yes or no. He said, Well, that's
all I want from you, so please answer the question, do you have any evidence of sodomy or
indecent acts, and she again replied that she couldn't say yes or no." When Tim's lawyer then
again tried asking the question more sternly to try to get an answer out of her, he was then
accused of "badgering the witness" by one of the 3 board members who were hearing the case.
And while this was going on, another of the board members was winking and flirting with the
After hearing all of the evidence, the Navy Administrative Board handed down a decision
recommending discharge from the Navy based upon the evidence presented. It was at this point
that Tim decided to take his case before the American public and put the Internet to work for
him, creating the web page and then sending out E-mail messages to get people to look at it and
find out what was going on, and to get involved by writing the President, Vice-President, and
members of Congress, regarding his case to attempt to get them to intervene in his behalf. I
received one of those Email messages which led to my getting involved by writing these
columns and informing as many people as I could about the case, and started becoming friends
with Tim on America On Line.
After going public, Tim started getting invited to appear on most every news show in America,
and soon had overwhelming public support coming his way. Last week on Monday, January
26th, a federal court judge issued a temporary injunction preventing the Navy from discharging
Tim until his case could receive a full review and then on Thursday, January 29th, the
injunction was made permanent. This was the first time that the government has lost a "Don't
ask, Don't tell" policy challenge, and they didn't take it lightly, saying they would have him
back in court the very next day if they found out any further information. Tim said, "I think the
reason we won was because we didn't challenge the constitutionality of the policy or the law.
Instead we challenged the way that it was or wasn't being followed. The thing that shocks me
the most is that to this date, the Navy has not answered any of the members of Congress
regarding the violations of federal law regarding the "Don't ask, Don't tell" policy. Another thing
that I don't think alot of the people in the United States realize is that Mr. Glass, lead
government attorney who has handled all of the cases regarding this so far, said before the
court, "The Don't ask, Don't tell policy doesn't present any proceedural policy right for the
service member." Now if the policy makes a procedure, but the service member has no rights
under that procedure, then how can that be a policy? It sounds more like a directive for
"So how do you feel at this point?", I asked. "Well, I'm very glad to be able to stay in the
military. Probably a double feeling. One, of course, I'm extremely happy with the judge's ruling
and that I get to maintain my military career and continue on. The other side of that is that the
Navy is not particularly good losers... I've experienced some of that since my returning to work
here, which has been addressed back to Washington, DC. As far as going on with my career, I
think that will work out fine. My only concern is with regards to the advancement board. If I
was still on board my ship and in charge of my command, I feel I certainly would be advanced
on when I come up later this year. But now that my name has become "INTERNATIONAL",
it's going to be hard for an advancement board NOT to know who I am, so I have to rely that
the board will remain impartial, and I don't know how likely that is. So that will be the first look
at whether the Navy, I don't want to say, retaliates. Because it would be hard to prove that this
was the reason.. but if, for some reason, they don't recommend me for Master Chief, with the
reviews I've received and the commendations I've gotten before this, I most certainly would
have probably gotten Master Chief had this not have happened. So time will tell."
Tim faces an uncertain future, and is probably the best known Navy guy in the world right
now. He can't say anything further about himself at this point due to the government watching
him for any slip that would allow them to further harass him. He does hope to someday come
through St. Louis to meet me. I look forward to meeting him too...
End of Part 1.....
STOP THE PRESSES!!!! In an exclusive ONLINE INTERVIEW, TIM MCVEIGH informed
me that he has WON AN INJUNCTION against the Navy discharging him from his command
and has been returned to ACTIVE DUTY. His case will be the first case heard in Federal
Court testing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell".
Update after decision in his favor...
NAVY OFFICER PROMOTED AND ACCEPTS EARLY RETIREMENT
by Mark Jacobs
MasterChief Petty Officer Tim McVeigh, who the Navy attempted to discharge on grounds of
homosexuality and immoral conduct, announced last week he has agreed to accept an early
retirement from the Navy after 17 years of service to his country. In a statement issued to EXP
magazine, Officer McVeigh stated, "I have worked very hard for over 17 years to earn my
promotion to Master Chief Petty Officer. Because of the Navy, I believe that this is the only
year that I would have been able to compete competitively for the promotion."
I asked Tim about the agreement he had reached with the Navy regarding his retirement. He
stated, "Basically, there are three parts to the settlement. I will retire on August 31st as a
Master Chief Petty Officer (with full Navy benefits). The Navy will pay $90,000 for my legal
fees and costs, and they will drop their appeal of Judge Sporkin's decision."
I then asked Tim about the reports he has reached an agreement with America OnLine as well.
He responded, "I have resolved my differences with AOL. That's all I can say." When I told
him I was hoping for "more" he laughed and responded, "So was I!!!"
So on August 31st, Tim will be returning to his home near Jacksonville, Florida to determine
what he's going to be doing with the rest of his life. We congratulate him and wish him the best
for his future!!! Tim has opened the doors for many gays in the military who no longer have to
be as worried about being the victims of a "witch hunt" and illegally persecuted by military
prosecutors in violation of President Clinton's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Pursue" policies,
like he was. Hopefully, the Navy and the Armed Forces in general have learned a lesson from
his fight for our rights.
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