Petitions

A petition titled “Have Fort Hood investigated for the sex based crimes and disappearances of soldiers” had nearly 38,000 signatures on Monday. It’s one of dozens of petitions on change.org criticizing Fort Hood and Army investigators recently.

Two online petitions call for the closure of Fort Hood. Another wants to rename Fort Hood after Spc. Vanessa Guillen, the local soldier who went missing in April.

Another petition aims to “investigate Fort Hood for the truth,” and has garnered nearly 21,000 signatures since it was created three weeks ago.

And there are more, most of them highlight or mention Guillen’s case, which has brought nationwide attention to Fort Hood.

Many of those petitions on Change.org are gaining traction. None more than the petition “To close down the military base Fort Hood,” which had nearly 682,000 online signatures as of Monday afternoon.

“Fort Hood failed her,” according to Jessica Mendez, who started the petition on July 1. “Vanessa Guillén was not safe in her own military base.”

A separate petition on change.org titled “SHUT FORT HOOD DOWN” also call for the post to close, and has gotten more than 2,600 signatures since it was created on Friday by Daphne Tate.

“After Vanessa Guillen’s ‘mysterious’ disappearance, it has become apparent to me and many others that Fort Hood has been involved in many ‘mysterious’ cases over the years,” Tate said in the petition description.

Another petition, “HOLD THE US ARMY ACCOUNTABLE: Justice for Vanessa Guillen” has about 570,000 signatures since it was posted a month ago.

Not all the petitions are about Guillen.

A recent petition aims to bring awareness to the case of Army Pvt. Gregory Wedel-Morales, who went missing last year and whose body was discovered in Killeen last month.

The petition “HOLD THE US ARMY ACCOUNTABLE: Justice for Gregory Wedel” went live on Thursday. It had about 9,400 signatures by 9 a.m. Monday, and had more than 12,000 signatures six hours later.

“After 10 months of little to no help from law enforcement and authorities, an anonymous tip finally told law enforcement where Greg was buried. The remains were found on June 19th and were confirmed to be his June 22nd,” according to petition creator Abby Wimberly, who says she is the late soldier’s cousin.

Wedel-Morales’ family is calling for the Army to remove the “deserter” status placed on him after he was reported AWOL when he disappeared last September. Investigators have said they believe “foul play” is involved in his death, but have stopped short of calling it a homicide.

Several other petitions mention both Wedel-Morales and Guillen.

An online search Monday for change.org petitions mentioning Vanessa Guillen brought up more than 60 results, with a wide range of people responding.

The “Rename Fort Hood after Vanessa Guillen” created on July 2 had more than 500 signatures on Monday, with a goal of reaching 1,000. Fort Hood is named after Confederate Gen. John Bell Hood.

The “Justice for Vanessa and other Military Women” petition created on Sunday had nine signatures by Monday afternoon.

According to the creater of the “Investigate Fort Hood for the Truth” petition, Damon C., too “many Shady stories have been going on and this needs to stop!”

The petition names the Guillen case as an example, and mentions a suspicious “tunnel,” near Fort Hood without going into specifics.

“It is a highly secured military base yet no one knows anything? Something is going on and we all in this world deserve to know the truth,” according to the petition.

While it’s unlikely the petitions will result in closing down Fort Hood, the attention the petitions are getting may have an impact on Army recruiting.

“My daughter wants to join the military. I will make sure that does not happen. Hell no! You dont deserve her anymore,” wrote Pedro Chavez of Tomball, Texas, as his reason for signing the petition to close Fort Hood.

His comment alone had nearly 2,600 “likes” on it.

Petition links

“Investigate Fort Hood for the Truth”

“To close down the military base Fort Hood”

“SHUT FORT HOOD DOWN”

“HOLD THE US ARMY ACCOUNTABLE: Justice for Gregory Wedel”

“HOLD THE US ARMY ACCOUNTABLE: Justice for Vanessa Guillen”

jbrooks@kdhnews.com | 254-501-7468

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