Saturday, March 2, 2013

Gay Marine Colonel recalls ‘don’t ask’ investigation

Gay colonel recalls ‘don’t ask’ investigation
Marine Corps Times
By Rick Maze
Staff writer
Posted : Friday Mar 1, 2013

An Army colonel retiring April 30 after 26 years of service said the nine years he spent living with the possibility of separation for admitting he was gay was something that he “wouldn’t wish … on anybody.”

“It was a miserable experience,” said Col. Gary Espinas, whose final military assignment is as an instructor at the prestigious Naval Postgraduate School in Monterrey, Calif. In retirement, Espinas will be director of chapter and membership services for OutServe-SLDN, a newly created position in the new joint organization that includes the division that gave him legal support when he faced the possible end of his career in 2003.

Espinas, a career foreign area officer and Russian specialist, was a major at the time, assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, when a State Department security officer questioned him about his list of local contacts, which included only men.

“I had a wide network of Russian friends,” Espinas said. “All of the contacts were men.”

The embassy security officer asked a direct question about whether Espinas was gay. “I knew lying was not a good option,” he said. “I responded I was, in fact, gay.”
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