Soldier goes public after Army strips officer promotion

A soldier in the U.S. Army claims he was stripped of his promotion to officer due to an old injury he suffered in college, despite the injury being completely healed.

Specialist Alvin Tolliver enlisted in the Army in 2010 and considers himself to be a very good soldier.  Tolliver’s superiors also thought highly of him and offered him a direct commission to become an officer a year and a half after he enlisted.

After going through Tolliver’s medical files, however, the offer was retracted, and Tolliver was told by the Army that he wasn’t fit to serve.  Tolliver was told that he couldn’t become an officer because of a spinal injury he suffered while playing football in college 14 years ago.

“Basically what was told to me was that we made a mistake. You should never have been let in, so you should be happy that we’re keeping you in,” he said.

According to WREG, Tolliver believes what happened to him was part of a bigger issue with the Army’s promotional process. He said the process was too subjective and needed to be updated.

“I think we can probably be safe to say that things can be outdated,” Tolliver said. “I think if a soldier has proved his mettle, then he should be given a chance.”

“You look at the two female Rangers that passed. Well, that’s an opportunity that they all received, and I’m just puzzled by the fact that I’m not receiving my opportunity.”

According to Tolliver, his injury was fixed immediately. He also said that his medical records prove that he is completely healed.

Tolliver said his records were examined by Army doctors before he enlisted in 2010, which is why he is surprised he is being denied a promotion because of the injury.

“If you’ve got me still able to deploy, I can still ruck sack over 150 pounds on my back, then why am I not qualified to lead but qualified to receive orders?” Tolliver said.

“I am willing to do what I have to do to prove to whoever I have to prove that I am worthy of receiving this commission,” he said.

Several doctors have written letters to the Army on Tolliver’s behalf, letting the Army know that his injury is completely healed, and he has no physical limitations preventing him from becoming an officer, but the Army refuses to budge.

With the Army refusing to change its decision, Tolliver has hired a lawyer to help him fight for his promotion.

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