According to the U.S. Army, Private First Class LaVena L. Johnson was killed by a self-inflicted gunshot wound from a rifle on July 19, 2005.
She was found in the tent of a military contractor. She had been beaten, burned badly on one side of her body, her nose had been broken, and someone had poured lye on her vagina. The crime scene sketch showed her rifle was several feet away, on the other side of a cot.
This 5’1″ woman, who volunteered to serve in our Armed Forces, serving in a war zone, was beaten, raped, murdered and set on fire. Our government concealed this from her family. Our government concealed this from the public. The Army rewarded her for her service by promoting her posthumously to Private First Class and giving her a medal for Good Conduct and the Army Commendation Medal. They rewarded her father, himself an Army veteran, by refusing to give him any details of his daughter’s death until after Missouri Rep. William Lacy Clay Jr. (D) made hay of it during the Pat Tillman-Jessica Lynch hearings. Afterward, they sent him a CD-ROM of color photos of his daughter’s body.
The theme for the Republican National Convention this week is “Country First”. Sen. John McCain claims to believe in that principle. PFC Johnson did as well; she honored her family tradition of putting her country first.
Consider, for just one moment, what our country seems to think of PFC Johnson. What her worth was to the armed forces.
Ask yourself, do the people who concealed and lied about these events “share your values”?