Manuel Marquez a former soldier of Fort Stewart’s 63rd Expeditionary Signal Battalion released a video of him striking a superior non-commissioned officer on film during a unit event.
He took advantage of a “pie in the face event” to use excessive force on his NCO, filming the event and titling it, “I slapped the shit out of the damn Sgt.”
These events are typically held to raise money for the unit’s family readiness group (FRG). Soldiers will volunteer to be “pied” in the face for a fee that will go to the FRG to pay for unit events, such as barbecues.
Private Manuel Marquez used the event as an opportunity to “sucker punch” a sergeant that he seemingly disliked.
“[This is] the Greatest Achievement I’ve done while being in the Army,” he wrote on a repost of the video earlier this month on Facebook. “F**k all Of You..Damn Near anybody can get it.”
In the video, the NCO was seemingly knocked unconscious by the blow and onlookers watched in shock as Marquez casually walks away.
Later, he showed pride for assaulting the man in front of his family and even claimed he didn’t care about what happened. “His kid was there… that n**ga was scared of me,” he wrote.
“The guy tried to get me back and I was like “Oh, nahh, I’m not playing,” he wrote. “I got out of the military..and now I’m going to college in February  with full benefits.”
While it is possible Marquez is eligible for benefits, he only served in the Army for a year and a half. According to the Public Affairs Officer with the 35th Signal Brigade, Captain Chad Cooper, Marquez was chaptered out of the Army for failing to meet standards.
Unless he received a bad conduct discharge -which is highly unlikely- he is still able to use the Post 9/11 GI bill to pay for college. The VA only requires that service members be discharged “under other than dishonorable conditions.”
Due to his brief time in service he will not be eligible for the total GI bill benefit. Sine he only served between 12 months and 18 months, he will only be entitled to 60% and 70% of the payable benefits.
Captain Cooper did not elaborate on the specifics of Marquez’s poor performance while in the Army but his tone insinuated the Army is much better off not having soldiers of his character.
This article was originally published in December of 2017.
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