Moral Waiver - In progress

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Randy J
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Joined: 01/15/2017

Started my journey to joining the Army National Guard back in September 2016. I required a moral waiver for a juvenile felony from almost 10 years ago. My recruiter began putting together my waiver packet, I went to MEPS and did the ASVAB and medical screening. I've sent in my reference papers and the packet was submitted in late October of 2016. A few months went by and I was contacted by my recruiter to say that they couldn't find the records of my felony, state and local both came up empty. So I did an FBI fingerprinting and was told that my packet had made it up to the highest level so I should hear back soon. Recruiter seems pretty sure that I will make it in, I have some anxiety that I won't just because this is my dream. My question is, what else is there to do in this waiver process? It's been a few months and I've hit every bump in the road (literally had to reschedule the MEPS thing 3 times due to the system crashing every time I tried to do anything). I have a few military buddies who said it's good news that it's still moving along, and the fact that state and local came up empty is even better news. Even the recruiter says that it may just be a "Self admittance" type thing now. I'm just ready to start this journey!

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MSG Glenn
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Joined: 08/31/2010
@Randy J

I haven't been able to figure out the waiver system. It seems some "impossible" ones take days & the ones you'd expect are no-brainers take months. I suspect that they don't know what to do with it because they have no official report so they kicked it upstairs & that person is busy so it could be a low priority. Just guessing of course. There was a holiday period since September & the person or persons who do the waivers might have been on leave & are first catching up.

I had a similar thing happen to me when I was applying for an armed security license/private detective license through an agency. I received a temporary license so I could start work & close to the time it was due to expire (it was only good for a few months) I still hadn't received my permanent license. I asked the agency if they knew why it hadn't come in the mail yet. They checked & were told that since I put down my misdemeanor offense years before on the application (omitting any charges would be a disqualification) nobody at State could find any record of it. I told them when asked that the charge was "involved in a fray in public, fighting in self defense". I was issued a $50 ticket while the guy I was fighting went to jail (after a trip to the hospital,LOL)& was told both by the officer & the guy at the PD where I paid it off that this was very easy to get removed & I'd get my $50 back. I had a job at the time & that would have meant missing work thereby losing money in the process if I went to court. It was evidently removed from the files along with all the rest of the very minor charges. I was also told that one of the officers just might have quietly thrown it away. This was done often before widespread use of computers as I heard much later. Got the permanent license in the mail in less than a week with permission to keep working PI/Security if it didn't come before the temp expired. I was also told by the State that I should omit that charge in any other dealings with the State because it would only delay things. No record means it never happened.

I expect something like that could have happened in your case. "He says there's a charge & by golly we better find it" LOL.

Good luck,have patience & please keep me updated.

Randy J
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Joined: 01/15/2017
Thank you for the reply MSG

Thank you for the reply MSG Glenn. The waiver process has been long and frustrating but hopefully it will lead to being able to serve my country. I am just wondering, will I still need to have an interview with higher ups or is this FBI check hopefully my last stop to approval? Thanks again for the reply and support. I will keep you updated as the process moves forward (again, hopefully!)

MSG Glenn
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Joined: 08/31/2010
Randy -

I'm sure that you'll receive an answer soon. How soon is anybody's guess. I don't know if an interview will be necessary. What does your Recruiter say?

Meantime if you're optimistic about the results you should start preparing (if you haven't already). Study for the ASVAB. lick on the box "ASVAB" at the top of this page. Study guides are also available. My local public library has "ASVAB for Dummies". You can probably find many more doing a Google search. The higher your score the more opportunities you'll have. Get in shape by doing pushups, situps & runs. If you need any advice just ask me. I can give you a few ideas now. Click on the box "Enlist" & then "APFT" for required scores at your age. While watching TV do pushups & situps during the ads. Pushups for the first ad & situps for the next, etc. Run 2 miles. If you have to walk part of that at first that's fine. When you get to the point of being able to run the whole distance go for 3 miles soon after. The Army's test is 2 miles. Run every other day & on your off days do some alternate cardio exercise like swimming, hiking, biking. Come to think of it that's about all you'll need but feel free to ask if there's something you want to know. I'm kind of a PT freak being a former Navy Frogman/SEAL, Judo coach, Karate instructor, wrestling coach & Army Paratrooper. I coached my son in all of the above & prepared him for the Army & he went in with a Ranger contract. He had a lot fewer problems than most during the training. Must've done something right, LOL.

Good luck!

Randy J
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MSG Glenn - I actually

MSG Glenn - I actually already took the ASVAB and have gone through all of the MEPS processing just short of swearing in. I scored in the 91st percentile on my ASVAB so virtually any MOS is available to me, I would like to go for 68W if my waiver gets approved. I have been training for a year now and have lost close to 85 pounds and gotten my body fat percentage down to a healthy range. I am working on my 2 mile time. I am hoping with constant training, that if I get in, basic will be just a little bit smoother! Your son was lucky to have you as a trainer, man what I would give for that! As for my recruiter, as helpful as he has been he is really short when it comes to answering all of my questions. He contacted me today to let me know my FBI background check went through and that my waiver packet is now at the National Guard Bureau in DC and it is on one of the last steps in this process. I am not sure what else I will need to do or how much longer it will be but my fingers are crossed for good news soon! He has always been very optimistic that if any case warranted a waiver it would be mine, so that is encouraging. Thank you for all of the advice and I will be sure to keep you updated in the process.

MSG Glenn
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Joined: 08/31/2010
Good Job!

To lose all that weight takes dedication.

I hadn't realized you were that far in the enlistment process. I also keep forgetting that the National Guard uses their own Recruiters separate from the Active Army & Army Reserve. They might have their own way of doing things. Are you enrolled in the FSTP? If it's available in the Guard your Recruiter should have gotten you involved. Upon completion & a PT test passed you get another stripe.

Doing PT is good but just don't overdue it. When I was still in high school & wanting to join the Navy Submarine Service & while waiting to graduate so we could leave my cousin, my buddy & I started working out & my buddy overdid it & broke his foot. That set him behind a few months. Then my cousin's brother rode over his foot with his car & you guessed it - a broken foot. I went all by myself but it worked out for me. I was able to get a good Sub & it so happened they needed a diver so I applied & was accepted to Underwater Swimmer School & that led to an assignment to Underwater Demolition School & eventually to a UDT & then a SEAL Team. I still missed Subs but I always wanted to be a Frogman. I was REALLY glad I had gotten myself in shape because that training was TOUGH.

Randy J
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Haha I definitely bet by my

Haha I definitely bet by my luck I would be the one to break my foot right before basic. I haven't heard anything about the FSTP but I would love to get involved, I will ask my recruiter about it asap. He actually just texted me and said the FBI check came back clean, I have no record whatsoever and my felony has kind of... disappeared? I'm hoping by self admission it's a good thing and not something that hurts me because I was honest. Fingers crossed! You must have had some crazy adventures even though it was a lot of work! Jealous for sure haha

MSG Glenn
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It was a great career BUT...

... my body is rebelling against every ding, sprain, strain it ever felt. My knees are starting to give me problems. My doc calls it "Paratrooper's knee". I never had any serious injuries from training but I sure had a lot of small ones. Small enough not to slow me down & pain, heat & cold were things we were taught to ignore. I can't tell which are caused by those bumps I received or just because age is creeping up on me or both,LOL.

Randy J
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Haha you should know to blame

Haha you should know to blame it on your service not your age! I will be one of the older guys in basic if I get in but hey better late than never. I'm not sure if you watch much tv but there is a show called "The Selection" where navy seals and other special operations work to show civilians what their training was like to see if they had what it takes and they started with 30 civs and right now they have 5 left, one of which is 45 years old. It definitely gives me a little bit of motivation like hey that guy can do it, so can I haha.

MSG Glenn
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I get cold chills ...

... every time I think of UDT training now called BUD/S. My UDT-R class lost more than 60% but some were recycled to a later class. I had heard that those who had to recycle have a very high attrition rate. It got to the point that they were even thinking of eliminating recycling at all but that would be hard on the good student who received an injury. I got REAL lucky because I hurt my foot & one of the Instructors noticed me limping when we were transporting an inflatable boat on our heads. He pulled me out & ordered me to go see our Corpsman. There is no arguing with UDT Instructors. Doc sent me to the hospital for X rays & a small broken bone was found. I was told to stay off of it for at least a week & use crutches for a few weeks when I had to go somewhere. Reported back to the Instructor & he just said "you're secure" which meant that for all practical purposes I had completed the course successfully & to report back to my bunk. So close to the end, a matter of a few days & I don't know how I would have taken it if I had to start from day 1. I was able to stand for the graduation ceremony with no problems.

I had heard of "The Selection" but so for haven't watched it. Like that other program a few years ago about SpecOps training they probably only show a very tiny percent of the training. Most of the stuff is only fit for a horror show on Halloween. My son told me the Ranger episode was nothing like what he went through. What they don't show is what happens after graduation & now your unit takes over. The schools only tell if you're fit to serve in SpecOps.

After I got out of my 6+ year Navy enlistment I stayed out until I was in my 30s when I decided to join the Army. I was too old for the SEALs to accept me & the Submarine Service didn't need anyone so that's why I chose the Army. My Recruiter laughed when I told him I wanted Airborne Infantry as I was already a qualified jumper so I challenged him to a PT test & if he turned that down I would have challenged him to a Judo, Karate or wrestling match, LOL. I taught Karate & Judo & was a wrestling coach & he knew it, LOL. Those sports plus the Military took their toll on my body which I didn't notice until just lately. The old saying "If I knew I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself" really hits home, LOL.

Randy J
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So my recruiter called today

So my recruiter called today to tell me that I am good to go if only I could find or dig up one piece of paper, proof of my record expungement that I had done years ago when I turned 18. He says he's not even sure why they need or want it, but that is what is holding me back. If I can find that paper, I should be good to go. He then said that if it was him, he would go to a different branch and not even tell them about my record. Even if I wanted to do that, which I don't, isn't that against the rules? The whole reason I'm going through this process was because I was told to be honest and include everything in my past. It's so frustrating to follow the rules and then get held back because they need a piece of paper that will probably be impossible to find. :/

MSG Glenn
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@Randy

I always wondered how someone can retrieve an expunged record, LOL. Maybe it's a test. If you can find something that doesn't exist anymore they'll take you & put you as an undercover agent, LOL. Or in an impossible job in which nobody has been successful in.

I suppose you could start with the court or agency that did the charging & expunging. I've ALWAYS been told that you should be completely honest when enlisting. That Recruiters could find any expunged or juvenile records & if you didn't admit to them & they were discovered you'd be DQed for lying. Maybe Guard Recruiters don't have the assets to dig that deep.

Continue with the updates Randy & good luck!

Randy J
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Joined: 01/15/2017
FINALLY

GOOD NEWS! My waiver was approved! I had the courts find an old docket and my recruiter sent that in at noon yesterday and by 2 pm they had stamped it as approved!! I am holding out for a 68W spot, but my recruiter says he's thinking I will be swearing in by the end of next week or week after and then shipping out 4 months after that. So glad this whole waiver process is finally over!! So anyone wondering if there is hope for a felony waiver, mine was approved in 6 months time.

MSG Glenn
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Joined: 08/31/2010
CONGRATULATIONS!

Now your journey begins.

Start researching other MOSs. Or you can choose whatever is available or the one that has a bonus. I should say "the MOS you would like to have that your local Guard unit has slots for". MOSs aren't as available in the Reserve Components as it is in the Active Duty Army where most of the time the one you would like can be had although sometimes you might have to wait until there are openings, As a rule most Guard units are Combat Arms with their support MOSs. Most Army Reserve units are service & support & many training units. Ask your Recruiter which MOSs the Guard unit has on it's Table of Organization & which of those are available. Then do your research & make your choices.

Randy J
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WELL...

I have been informed that 68W is not available to me, due to my prior felony conviction. Actually kind of relieved because I cut my thumb the other day and got kind of woozy... started to think well man, I may not be good at that. Haha. Anyway, my recruiter says that my waiver was "approved" to be reviewed. He is not a very clear man, he makes no sense to me. So here I am waiting again. He says I should be swearing in by this Thursday but now I am worried AGAIN that I will be turned down. I just want to sign the contract so they cant take it away from me lol every time I get excited about it I hear "oh well there's more to do" :/ pretty frustrating. but I hope to hear back for 100% sure soon. HOPE.

MSG Glenn
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I hope you get...

...exactly what you want. I know it won't be 68W but having a fear of blood it's the last thing you'd want, LOL. Minor wounds can bleed copiously. I had taken a few small pieces of shrapnel (and/or debris) to my face - just under my left eye, my left nostril & the corner of my mouth which left me with a mouthful of busted teeth & a flapping nostril. I hardly realized I was hit until my buddy noticed the whole front of my shirt & pants were soaked in blood. We just kept firing like nothing happened. No pain. Adrenalin saw to that, LOL. It had to be at least 5 gallons, LOL. Doc came & didn't bat an eye. He patched me up & sent me on my way to the aide station. On my way there I was trying to get a small piece of tooth out of my mouth & when I did I noticed it was a piece of metal & NOT a filling, LOL. I had wanted to save it & have it mounted on a Christian Cross but somewhere along the way it got lost.

As always - keep me advised. I know that in a Reserve Component unit MOS slots are not as many as in the Active Duty Army. You might have to take something you really don't want but at least you'll be in & I'm sure you'll do well regardless.

Randy J
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Joined: 01/15/2017
Once again, the process is

Once again, the process is being stalled. Although after the last phase where i thought it had been approved, but it had only be approved for review, my recruiter said i would swearing in by Thursday, that was 2 weeks ago. He contacted me today to say they now need the police report... that doesn't exist because the record was destroyed. I am definitely defeated and feeling like this will not get approved which is a major let down. He says I may have to have an interview with the commander, hopefully that will be my last shot and I will know one way or another soon.

MSG Glenn
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That's Bad News

Don't give up hope, though.

I still don't see how they expect you to get a record that no longer exists. Although I was always told that the Military can get records that were expunged or juvenile records that are otherwise inaccessible. If that's the case then why can't they get them their selves? I have a feeling that it's a myth so prospective recruits don't lie about their record.

Does your Recruiter have any ideas? By now he has enough time invested in you that he should do all he can to get you in. Of course his hands are tied once it gets kicked upstairs to a higher authority. That & the fact that the National Guard does their own recruiting makes me think that they march to a different drummer compared to the Active Duty Army & Army Reserve.

I guess it's official that now the Military is starting to build up its manpower levels. This might help.

Your Recruiter said "Thursday" but he didn't says which Thursday. I don't mean to be flippant but there's a lot of truth to that.

Randy J
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Joined: 01/15/2017
I'm trying not to lose hope

I'm trying not to lose hope but it has been over 6 months of a neverending list. My recruiter, although he seems to be doing everything he can, has communication problems. Example would be him telling me my waiver had been approved, that we were good to go and I would be swearing in that week to the next phone call I got from him stating that they need more paperwork. He says he will be contacting the police chief to try to find the report but I already talked to records who says that it has been destroyed. The most frustrating part has been my recruiter who doesn't seem to ever be clear on anything. I understand not being sure on time frame, but he should know the waiver process and what steps I still have to go through in order to get approved would he not? I am beyond discouraged and am sure I will get denied and that is a hard pill to swallow. I'm not sure if I should try to contact another recruiter behind my current recruiters back or if I should stick it out even if this current one doesn't seem to be 100% clear on the waiver process. He told me at one point to go to another branch and lie about my record because obviously they can't find anything but I have too much of a conscience to do that.

MSG Glenn
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There's a lot to be said...

...about the waiver process. I don't think I EVER understood it. That's probably because there's people involved that have different views or interpret policies differently.

I doubt if changing Recruiters would help much. You'd be working with the same Recruiters that service that National Guard unit & he'd more than likely just refer you back to the same Recruiter you've been working with. Then again I'm not familiar with National Guard recruiting whatsoever. I think there's a lot fewer of them than there is for Active Duty Army & Army Reserve recruiting.

The hardest people I've ever had to work with are those who are unable to communicate well. I have no idea how much experience your Recruiter has. This might be the first time he's had to handle a case like yours.

kylekoopman
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Joined: 03/09/2017
Have you gotten anywhere? I

Have you gotten anywhere?
I got in trouble while in college and have a few misdemeanor offenses. Only 3 convicted... They've all been expunged, but it sounds like the only way for me to get in is for a Moral Waiver.
I'm 34 right now and only have about 9 months left before I'm too old to join.

Thanks,
Kyle

MSG Glenn
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Joined: 08/31/2010
@Kyle

Did your Recruiter put a request for waiver in yet? I hope he did because Recruiting Offices will start to get real busy real soon. That also means more waivers than what there were in the last 3 months so those who approve or disapprove them will also be busier than what they had been.

Good luck & keep me updated, Kyle.

kylekoopman
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Joined: 03/09/2017
MSG Glenn, I've not had him

MSG Glenn,

I've not had him submit the Moral Waiver yet. He wanted to see what comes of the letter to request a pardon from the governor. I'm feeling that nothing will come of the letter though...

I'm also thinking that I'll need a waiver for medical as well.
In December, I had Arthroscopic surgery on my knee (Was swelling every winter for the past few years - Doc found a bone spur and excess tissue on the ACL). I also had my nose fixed, had a deviated septum (Doc opened up the nasal passages). In May, I cut through my left thumb, which required several stitches and seeing a plastic surgeon.

I was planning on sending in doctors notes with the MEPS Physical questionnaire...

Thanks,
Kyle

MSG Glenn
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Kyle -

You might have to wait a certain period of time after your surgery to be able to enlist. I want to say a half a year or a year but your Recruiter can tell you exactly how long. The Army will want you to be completely healed & make sure the surgery was a permanent success. Since you'll have to run & walk long distances with a heavy load as a Soldier the Army will want to make sure that they don't cause you any further injuries.