The leaders of Navajo Nation have called for a thorough investigation as they have demanded answers surrounding the deaths of two Native American Fort Hood soldiers who died just months apart.
The two soldiers in question are Miguel Yazzie, a 33-year-old Army Specialist, and Carlton Chee, a 25-year-old Private, who marked the 27th and the 28th death at Fort Hood this year.
Yazzie, who was originally from Arizona, passed away on July 2, one day after he was hospitalized over a medical problem.
Two months later, on September 2, New Mexico-based Chee succumbed to his medical condition. The 25-year-old died five days after collapsing during training.
Following the deaths of two Native American soldiers, Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez called for an investigation and explained how the families of the deceased soldiers’ suspect foul play was involved in their deaths.
“On behalf of the Navajo Nation, we offer our thoughts and prayers for the families of Pvt. Chee and Spc. Yazzie,” Mr. Nez said in a statement.
“We spoke with the families of Pvt. Chee and Spc. Yazzie and they have many concerns and questions related to inconsistent information and details provided by military officials.
“It is very troubling that while they are mourning the loss of their loved ones, they are not receiving adequate and timely factual information regarding the time leading up to their deaths.”
As the Navajo Times confirmed, Chee’s family refused to respond for comment. However, Yazzie’s father, Michael, expressed his concerns and suggested the Army was careless in his son’s case.
“How come they took him to an off-base hospital? They have a really nice facility on-base. Why didn’t they just take him there?” Michael said according to the Navajo Times.
As the father added, his conversations with other soldiers made the family believe the 33-year-old soldier got on the bad side of his superiors.
“There were some prior incidents. He was denied certain things that he needed,” Michael insisted.
Nez’s statement was also backed by Navajo Nation Vice President Myron Lizer who expressed concern for all Navajo individuals who are serving the country.
“Our concern is not only for these two members of the Navajo Nation, but for the many Navajo men and women who are serving in every branch of the military around the world. As you know, the Navajo people have a long and proud history of serving in the Armed Forces at a higher per capita rate than any other demographic in the United States,” he said in a press release.
“This is not only a call for a congressional inquiry, but it is a call for accountability and answers for the families that are grieving for their loved ones.”
According to the reports, the Subcommittee on National Security and the Subcommittee on Military Personnel have launched a joint investigation into the deaths of Fort Hood soldiers on Tuesday.
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