COLUMBUS, GA (WXTX) - After being released from active duty after 9-11, Specialist Lisa Pagan was recalled to the Army, which is allowed under the military's "individual ready reserve" program.
Pagan had a choice to make--either take a 6 month deployment to Iraq and leave her children behind, or refuse to go and risk facing charges.
"My husband travels a lot and he's going to be out of town even next week. I don't have any family members that are able to care for my children for different health reasons or location, so that's why I have to bring them with me," says Pagan.
And that's exactly what she did, Pagan, four year-old Elizabeth and three year-old Eric, packed up and left North Carolina, and reported to Fort Benning.
"Soldiers do not normally report to a mobilization cite with children," says Army Public Affairs Officer Major Maria Quan.
Army officials say soldiers in the "ready reserve plan" have options once they're called in to be deployed.
Soldiers can apply for a delay or exemption from being mobilized.
Officials say Pagan's time just ran out.
"Specialist Pagans mobile orders originally had a report date of January 27, 2008. After all amendments, her final report date was March 1st of 2009. That is over a year. So she received several delays," says Major Quan.