Another female soldier died at Texas’ Fort Hood, but Army officials didn't say anything about it

Spc. Katerina Weikel's death is the center of a joint Army and Killeen Police Department investigation.

click to enlarge Killeen Army base renamed an entrance for Vanessa Guillén, a soldier who was slain while serving at the facility. - Screen Capture / YouTube KPRC 2
Screen Capture / YouTube KPRC 2
Killeen Army base renamed an entrance for Vanessa Guillén, a soldier who was slain while serving at the facility.
A month after news broke of Latina soldier Pvt. Ana Basaldua Ruiz's apparent death by suicide at Texas' Fort Hood, Military.com reports that yet another female soldier from the base was found dead the same day.

Despite Army officials being aware of the second fatality, they released no public statement on it, according to Military.com.

Spc. Katerina Weikel, who served in 64th Military Police Company, 720th Military Police Battalion, 89th Military Police Brigade, was also found dead March 13, the same day as Ruiz. Weikel's death was discovered by Military.com through two obituaries: one published in the late soldier's hometown newspaper in New York state and a brief obituary posted by a Killeen funeral home.

News of the two deaths comes three years after Army specialist Vanessa Guillén’s dismembered and charred remains were discovered near Ft. Hood. The crime shook the nation and spurred sweeping changes in how the military handles and prosecutes sexual assault and misconduct within its ranks.
In a statement to Military.com, a base spokesperson Lt. Col. Tania Donovan said Weikel's death happened off-base and noted that there's no Army policy requiring officials to  disclose when a soldier assigned to Fort Hood dies. Decisions on when to reveal information about fatalities in the ranks are made “case by case,” she said.

Although the Weikel's death wasn't publicly announced, it did spur a joint investigation between the Department of the Army Criminal Investigation Division and the Killeen Police Department, Donovan told the news site.

“As this is an ongoing investigation, no further information will be released at this time,” her statement read.

Texas-based lawyer Sean Timmons, a former Fort Hood judge advocate general, told Military.com in an interview that a second soldier’s death on March 13 may not have been immediately shocking to base leaders.

“The fact that two happened within a close proximity, honestly, probably didn't even raise any eyebrows for them, because suicide is such a common thing that happens at Fort Hood,” Timmons said. “It's very, very problematic.”

Weikel enlisted in the U.S. Army in 2019 and graduated from boot camp at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. In 2020, she deployed to Poland and Germany. She attended advanced training to become a military police officer, a post she loved, according to the funeral home obituary.

She died the day after her 29th birthday.

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Nina Rangel

Nina Rangel uses nearly 20 years of experience in the foodservice industry to tell the stories of movers and shakers in the food scene in San Antonio. As the Food + Nightlife Editor for the San Antonio Current, she showcases her passion for the Alamo City’s culinary community by promoting local flavors, uncovering...

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