TSgt raped at Sather Air Base Iraq

Mary Gallager, United States Air Force

I was at Sather AB, Iraq in November 2009, this was my 3 tour to the region. I was having trouble with a co-worker and one night I went into the bathroom as I came out of the stall he was standing there and threw me up against the wall and raped me and then told me “that is how you fuck a whore”. He left me there and when I finally left I went to my Commander who told me that it is a “he said she said”. 12yrs of service went down the drain that night. From that point on the Air Force saw me damaged goods and they told me I had PTSD and medically discharged me just a year before I was a rising star doing what I love and now I spend my days at the VA, taking pills, and trying to find a reason to live!

3 thoughts on “TSgt raped at Sather Air Base Iraq

  1. Dear Mary:

    I have read your post and have been thinking of you. First of all you are not damaged goods. You served your country faithfully for 12 years, acquiring skills and expertise in handling your duties. If I am right, reading between the lines, you have a desire to re-enter service. If I am wrong, correct me.

    First of all, I commend you for seeking services at the VA, hopefully the women’s clinic and MST services. My daughter is a Marine veteran who was medically discharged and has been receiving various medical and mental health services connected with her two rape incidents. She needed it so she could resolve many issues surrounding them and the response of her chain of command. She was morally wounded how her immediate and battalion’s chain of command regarded her while active duty.

    I hope that you will reach out to other women veterans who have a similar situation like yours. My daughter and i have joined the Women’s Marine Assn. – a group of women veterans who would reach out to anyone.

    I know that it is difficult to see now what lies in the future. I pray that you will find people, maybe at the local veteran center who could assist you.

    Take care,

  2. I am so sorry this happened to you I was at Sather during this period and I wish I had known. You are not damaged goods and I respect your service

  3. I’m truly sorry to hear you went through this! I served 20 years active duty in the Air Force and retired as a Tech Sergeant. I deployed to Sather in 2011 and thankfully I carried around a hand held radio! One morning around 2 or 3 am I left my trailer (lived alone) and walked down to the female latrine trailer. When I was leaving and walking down the gravel road I heard the sound of people waking on the gravel behind me. I stopped to look back and held my radio up and saw two guys about 20-30 feet. They stopped and turned around and walked away. If it was not for me having the hand held radio, I hate to think what could have happened! It’s not easy being a female in the military and its easy to feel alone when leadership just wants to avoid the situation and make you look like you’re the problem. I hope you’re doing much better now!

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