President Obama, A Marine Corps Widow Needs Your Support

Posted on Wednesday, 13th April 2011 @ 05:53 PM by Text Size A | A | A

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Stahlman, shaking hands with President Reagan


Colonel Michael Stahlman was an exemplary marine. As a child, he traveled the world with his family, as his father, John Stahlman, performed his duties as one of the founding directors of the Peace Corp; an appointment he received directly from President John Kennedy and Sargent Shriver. As a young boy, he and his sister Julia, paid little Maria Shriver a quarter to ride her pony. He grew up in an atmosphere that cultivated patriotism and service to country.

By the tender age of 14, he begged to enter the Marine Military Academy because he already knew he wanted to spend his life serving our country. Words such as, wise, even-tempered, compassionate and ethical are constantly used to describe Stahlman by those who knew him well and those who only met him once or twice. By the age of 18, the Academy used him in a public service video promoting the advantages of service.

Video of Future Colonel Mike Stahlman USMC

Stahlman went on to graduate with distinction from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1985, followed by RF-4B flight training school. By 1993, he completed law school, and then earned a Master’s in Criminal Law from the Judge Advocate General’s School. In addition to all of his academic accomplishments, Stahlman was a tri-athlete and regularly competed in triathlons. One would think Stahlman was highly competitive, but according to everyone he knew, it was the quite the opposite.

“The only person Mike ever competed with was himself,” states his widow, Kimberly. “He had no ego at all.”

Stahlman and his wife Kimberly married in 1987 and waited for nearly 10 years before having children. Kimberly earned her Master’s Degree in Counseling and dutifully carried out her responsibilities as a Marine Corps wife, just as devoted to the Corps as her husband.

“Our whole life was the Corps and we both loved it; we were a team.” Kimberly states.

As a lawyer, Stahlman served on some of the highest profile cases in U.S. history; including Haditha. In 2007, he was getting ready to retire and teach law. Instead, he decided that his military career would not be complete until he served at least a year in Iraq. Knowing her husband’s devotion, Kimberly did not balk at his decision.

While in Iraq, Colonel Stahlman served as the Rule of Law Coordinator at Camp Ramadi. The massive responsibility of building the new Iraqi Government Center and Jail was one in which he was well-prepared and trained to carry out.

On the morning of July 31, 2008, Colonel Stahlman was found in his room with a gunshot wound to his left temple and died nearly 3 months later in Bethesda, Maryland; never regaining consciousness. The official cause of death was ruled a suicide, but Kimberly has never believed it. To that end, she set out to find the truth by hiring a team of forensic and legal experts to review the evidence.

Now, represented by highly respected attorney, Colby Vokey, and armed with a complete forensic crime scene report that concludes Colonel Stahlman’s gunshot could not have been self-inflicted, she is trying to get someone — anyone– to allow a proper presentation of the report.

“I am being treated like a widow in denial. I can understand that, but what I want people to know is that I was always prepared for the possibility that the forensic review would come back supporting suicide. Although, I would have never understood that, because Mike had no problems with depression and was looking forward to coming home on leave for our youngest daughter’s birthday in just 3 weeks.”

Kimberly Stahlman has started a social media campaign and a petition addressed to President Obama, Congress and others, imploring military leaders and government officials to hear all of the evidence and open an investigation into her husband’s death. For more details, you can visit the following links:

Facebook Event

Colonel Michael R. Stahlman USMC


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