"THE FAST BURNER" *

 

"Gray" is a MAJCOM commander known for his tough, no nonsense approach to the world and the persons in his command. He is not a tyrant, but he has very little patience with personnel who cannot manage their personal lives. Subordinates know that Gray will have very little mercy if they are caught drinking and driving, bouncing checks, cheating on their spouses, or using government supplies for personal purposes. Recently, a senior master sergeant was caught using his government-issued American Express (AMEX) credit card to pay for a trip to a major amusement park in Florida for his family. Gray directed a court martial without blinking an eye, and then refused to reduce the NCOís one-year sentence to Leavenworth.

"I guess American Express gave him a real vacation," General Gray was overheard to say with a laugh.

Working in Grayís command section is Colonel Gold, a man whose reputation is spotless. Among his peers he is universally respected as the walking embodiment of competence, honesty, forthrightness, moral courage, and humility. It is taken for granted that he will one day become a general officer and many people publicly express the hope that he will eventually become Chief of Staff.

Goldís life is not perfect, however. Last year he went through a very messy divorce, and there are rumors to the effect that "his wife took him to the cleaners." Gold moved into an efficiency apartment just outside the main gate, sold his Corvette, and has been riding a bicycle to work. He continues to do good work, but he seems "down" to his co-workers.

On one particular day, investigators bring it to Grayís attention that Gold has run up significant debts at a local drinking establishment, and that he has attempted to resolve those debts by using his government issued AMEX card. Gold hasnít paid his AMEX bills for four months.