Patrick Shanahan is out as acting defense secretary

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Patrick Shanahan Withdraws From Consideration For Defense Secretary

President Donald Trump announced on Tuesday that Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan will "not to go forward with his confirmation process."

Trump said that Army Secretary Mark Esper will now serve as acting defense secretary.


The Washington Post reported on Tuesday that Shanahan decided to step aside because he was worried revelations about past incidents of domestic abuse would hurt his family, especially his son.

Specifically, Shanahan's former wife Kimberley Jordinson beat him in August 2010 and tried to set his clothes on fire, according to the Washington Post. In a separate November 2011 altercation, his son severely injured Jordinson by beating her with a baseball bat.

Jordinson was charged with domestic violence for the first incident, but Shanahan later had the charges dropped, the Washington Post reported.

Shortly after his then-17-year-old son assaulted Jordinson, Shanahan wrote a memo to his former wife's brother arguing that his son had acted in "self-defense," although he told the Post he now regrets doing so.

Shanahan also arranged to hire a defense team for his son who was ultimately ordered to attend a Florida Sheriff's Youth Ranch for 18 months and given four years of probation – both punishments were reduced, according to the newspaper.

"Bad things can happen to good families," Shanahan told the Post, adding that discussing his son's assault publicly "will ruin my son's life."Defense officials were not immediately available for comment.

Trump announced on May 9 he intended to nominate Shanahan, but the Senate never received the nomination. Yahoo News reported on Tuesday that Shanahan's FBI background check was holding up his confirmation process.

Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Trump said he did not ask Shanahan to withdraw his nomination as defense secretary.

"He walked in this morning and he said it's going to be a rough time for him because of, obviously, what happened," the president said. "But I did not ask him to withdraw. He presented me with a letter this morning. That was his decision."

Trump also said he was unaware of the "very unfortunate" allegations of domestic violence raised in the media until Monday. Despite not knowing about the issues with Shanahan's family, Trump asserted the the White House does not have any problems with vetting nominees for cabinet positions.

"As you know, Pat was acting [defense secretary]," Trump said. "And so, acting gives you much greater flexibility. A lot easier to do things. So that's the way it is. Too bad."

In a statement on Tuesday, Shanahan said he would welcome serving as defense secretary, "but not at the expense of being a good father.

"After having been confirmed for Deputy Secretary less than two years ago, it is unfortunate that a painful and deeply personal family situation from long ago is being dredged up and painted in an incomplete and therefore misleading way in the course of this process," Shanahan said.

"I believe my continuing in the confirmation process would force my three children to relive a traumatic chapter in our family's life and reopen wounds we have worked years to heal," he added. "Ultimately, their safety and well-being is my highest priority."

UPDATE: This story was updated on June 18 with information from the Washington Post, a statement from Patrick Shanahan, and quotes from President Donald Trump.

(Task & Purpose photo illustration by Paul Szoldra)

Jordan Way was living a waking nightmare.

The 23-year-old sailor laid in bed trembling. At times, his body would shake violently as he sobbed. He had recently undergone a routine shoulder surgery on Dec. 12, 2017, and was hoping to recover.

Instead, Jordan couldn't do much of anything other than think about the pain. Simple tasks like showering, dressing himself, or going to the bathroom alone were out of the question, and the excruciating sensation in his shoulder made lying down to sleep feel like torture.

"Imagine being asleep," he called to tell his mother Suzi at one point, "but you can still feel the pain."

To help, military doctors gave Jordan oxycodone, a powerful semi-synthetic opiate they prescribed to dull the sensation in his shoulder. Navy medical records show that he went on to take more than 80 doses of the drug in the days following the surgery, dutifully following doctor's orders to the letter.

Instinctively, Jordan, a Navy corpsman who by day worked at the Twentynine Palms naval hospital where he was now a patient, knew something was wrong. The drugs seemed to have little effect. His parents advised him to seek outside medical advice, but base doctors insisted the drugs just needed more time to work.

"They've got my back," Jordan had told his parents before the surgery, which happened on a Tuesday. By Saturday, he was dead.

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T-38 Talon training aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Two airmen from Vance Air Force Base, Oklahoma, were killed on Thursday when two T-38 Talon training aircraft crashed during training mission, according to a message posted on the base's Facebook age.

The two airmen's names are being withheld pending next of kin notification.

A total of four airmen were onboard the aircraft at the time of the incident, base officials had previously announced.

The medical conditions for the other two people involved in the crash was not immediately known.

An investigation will be launched to determine the cause of the crash.

Emergency responders from Vance Air Force Base are at the crash scene to treat casualties and help with recovery efforts.

Read the entire message below:

VANCE AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. – Two Vance Air Force Base Airmen were killed in an aircraft mishap at approximately 9:10 a.m. today.

At the time of the accident, the aircraft were performing a training mission.

Vance emergency response personnel are on scene to treat casualties and assist in recovery efforts.

Names of the deceased will be withheld pending next of kin notification.

A safety investigation team will investigate the incident.

Additional details will be provided as information becomes available. #VanceUpdates.

This is a breaking news story. It will be updated as more information is released.

The commander of the Marine Corps' Wounded Warrior Regiment has been relieved over a loss of "trust and confidence in his ability to lead" amid an investigation into his conduct, a Corps official told Task & Purpose on Thursday.

Col. Lawrence F. Miller was removed from his post on Thursday morning and replaced with his executive officer, Lt. Col. Larry Coleman, who will serve as interim commander of the Quantico, Virginia based unit.

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President Donald Trump has nixed any effort by the Navy to excommunicate Eddie Gallagher from the SEAL community.

"The Navy will NOT be taking away Warfighter and Navy Seal Eddie Gallagher's Trident Pin," the president tweeted on Thursday. "This case was handled very badly from the beginning. Get back to business!"

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The Medal of Honor (U.S. Navy photo)

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