Author Toni Rico

Let me sum up the show at the AUSA opening ceremony for you: Army on Broadway. The pageant of soldiers-past that usually opens the AUSA convention is trying hard to be earnest, but for soldiers and NCOs in the audience it might be hard to not secretly laugh at the thought of Korean and Vietnam-era soldiers breaking into Glee-style song. The stage show points its Broadway lights at soldiers dressed up in uniforms of wars past. Particularly, err, persuasive was the Soldier’s Creed echoing from the stage, as a soldier tried to convince you she would “engage and destroy…

Congress voted to restore death benefits to military families Oct. 10 but not before the Fisher House Foundation first offered to pay the families the death gratuity. Families typically receive the money from the government after a service member dies and it helps to cover the funeral expenses of their fallen loved ones. In gratitude to the foundation, several military community Facebook pages started a fundraiser to benefit Fisher House. Led by the administrators of the Facebook page Stolen Valor, and with the help of the admins of Awesome Sh*t My Drill Sergeant Said, U.S. Army WTF! Moments, Battle In…

After a decade of high op-tempo that brought significant pay raises, benefits enhancements and swift promotions, the Army’s NCO corps is facing a slate of bad news. What is at stake? Promotions, force outs, getting kicked out of the Army for minor infractions. How are NCOs feeling the heat and how can you protect your career? Meanwhile, SOCOM funded an experiment, dubbed “Quantum Leap,” to mine data from people’s social media accounts. Does this experiment mean operators will transform the way they work and spend less time on the ground? SOCOM is not the only one looking into cyber operations.…

We’ve cut through all the rumors and taken your questions about the Army’s new tattoo ban to senior leaders. Where can you have ink? What if you have it in the banned places? And who will pay to have banned tattoos removed? Find out the key things you need to know about the coming policy. Yes, the Afghanistan drawdown is in full swing, but the Army is still deploying soldiers to the country. The Pentagon announced the latest deployments last week and we have the breakdown on the thousands of soldiers who will deploy, and their units. The story of…

They didn’t exactly MacGyver it, but the end result is just as great; a possible engine swap on a Humvee that could have cost the Army $10,000 took only a $68 fix thanks to some fiscally minded soldiers at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The maintenance section of A company, 51st Signal Battalion (Expeditionary) first received the Humvee after the drivers noticed the exhaust was spewing engine oil, said Spc. Jason Sabisky, a wheeled vehicle mechanic. Turns out the engine head had two faulty valves. According to their standard operating procedures that meant they would have to send it to the…

[HTML1] Talk about mission-focused PT: First Lt. Ashley Sorensen, an EOD officer, may have set a world record for the woman’s fastest one-mile run in a bomb suit. Yes, it’s a thing. Her one-mile time of 11 minutes, 6 seconds in the 75-pound Explosive Ordnance Disposal suit needs to be verified by  Guinness World Records, but if it gets the official stamp of approval she would be the first to hold the record. “There is not a previous record holder for this,” a Guinness World Records spokesperson said in an email. Stars and Stripes reported in 2012 that Sgt. Stephanie Beachley…

New job openings for junior enlisted women are putting them in battalion- and company-level roles in brigade combat teams and special ops aviation units, the latest phase of the ongoing effort to open combat-related jobs to women.  See this week’s issue for the full list of brigades and MOSs now open. We put to the test a new precision scope and shooting system that can turn an average shooter into a competent sniper with the push of a button. Find out how experienced shooters — and an inexperienced one — fared with the new “smart” scope. The Army’s next Medal of Honor…

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