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In Their Own Words Ц The Guardian

Harm    Mac    Bud    AJ

Rear Admiral A.J. Chegwidden

By Packrat (packing@gte.net)

The older I get, the more firmly convinced I am that justice is one of the most important things in human society. Chief Bauwer is as good an example as I can come up with.

I'd be the first to admit that Paul Bauwer gives me the chills. I'm not afraid of the man; I just know that there, but for the grace of God, go I. I had Bill Clancy to straighten me out. Too bad Chief Bauwer didn't have someone to shake some sense into him. Of course, there are others like him, lots of others, who never could cope with civilian society again. Today they inhabit our veterans' hospitals and scavenge from dumpsters in the cities and some of them lead militia groups out in the wilder parts of the country. But it is true that we don't do enough for the warriors we create once the battle is over. It's good to know that we were able to help someone this time.

Trust Roberts to wind up in the middle of the situation! If I'd been him I would have been home with a stack of law books and a pan of stuffed Italian shells -- no, make that a pizza for his generation -- and I'd have been reviewing. Instead, he was in a church praying. Not that I don't believe in divine intervention; I've just always been of the opinion that God expects us to make an effort to help ourselves.

Trust Rabb to get on his white horse and put himself right in the middle of the mess. The DC police weren't too happy over that. The CNO wasn't happy with the negative publicity, either, but he had to agree with me that the Navy has an obligation to take care of its own; and even if Chief Bauwer was UA for nine years, he was still our business. There was no way I was going to allow a former SeAL to be chewed up by the civilian justice system. So, once I had let Rabb, MacKenzie, and Roberts know that I wasn't happy with them being in the middle of the media circus, I made it clear that we were going to do our damnedest to help the Chief.

Rabb frequently drives me nuts. He has a habit of charging into things without thinking; however, if you give him a cause, he'll never stop working until he's done everything that can possibly be done. That, and the fact that he'd already had contact with Chief Bauwer, made him the best choice for a defense lawyer. And if Rabb is on the case, Mac and Bud will be right there backing him up for all they're worth. Makes for an effective team.

And they did get Chief Bauwer justice, despite a prosecutor who refused to look beyond the obvious. Administrative separation makes good sense in this case. It tacitly recognizes that he had a point in the case of the guy who was stalking his wife, and it should allow the Chief to keep some of his benefits. Rabb found him a job where he can make use of some of the skills he spent so much time developing; and if he takes counseling seriously, he might manage to get that temper under control. We can only hope so, both for his sake and the sake of his son.

So, the truth is told about the three thugs that tried to rob the store, Chief Bauwer gets his life back instead of having to be a homeless, hopeless man or going to jail for fifteen to twenty, and I offer up a silent prayer of thanks once more for friends who cared enough to make me shape up and not become one of those who was lost in Vietnam, even if they did come home.


Disclaimer: While based on the JAG episode, this is for entertainment purposes only and no profit is being made.