Air Force Rule Forces Families To Make Difficult Decisions
By Chris Cannon
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A Milwaukee mother's issue with the United States
Air Force has put a spotlight on a rule that forces parents to make difficult
Rebecca Edmonds became pregnant while in training to join the Air Force and
hid her pregnancy from her commanders. She only told them after she was
commissioned, and then Air Force leaders dis-enrolled her.
"I said to him, after he told me that, ‘Had I terminated the pregnancy
before my commissioning, would I have been able to commission at that point?'
And he said, ‘Well, technically yes,'" Edmonds explained.
A Clarksville mother heard Edmonds's story on the news, and it brought back
memories of when her late son went to enlist in the Air Force.
He was a 21-year-old single father at the time.
"His whole premise for going into the United States Air Force was to
provide a better life for his daughter," said Renea Rosson.
But her son, Tim Alumbaugh, was surprised to learn of the parenting rule
when he enlisted.
"That's when they told him you have two choices, you either have to
marry the mother, or you have to sign away all rights to your daughter,"
Her son felt he did not have a choice because he wanted to be part of his
daughter's life, so he married the child's mother.
"It's a prime example of what happens when they're forced to do things
like that because the marriage ended up dissolving in divorce," Rosson
Rosson understands the rigors that come with being an enlisted officer in
the military. But she also contends most officers have a strong support
structure at home.
"They have mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters that are willing to take
on that responsibility," Rosson said.
Her son, Tim, left the Air Force six years after enlisting and moved back to
Clarksville to help take care of his brother who had cancer. Time was murdered at
a Nashville truck stop in June 2007.
Rosson still maintains a very close relationship with her granddaughter and