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Missing Fort Bragg family found in Tennessee, husband has been AWOL

Travis Reynolds, 25; his wife, Deanna; and their 19-month-old son, Cooper.
Travis Reynolds, 25; his wife, Deanna; and their 19-month-old son, Cooper.

Three members of a Fort Bragg family who were reported missing a week ago in New York after visiting relatives were found in Tennessee on Monday morning.

Fort Bragg officials confirmed Spc. Travis W. Reynolds, of Fayetteville, has been absent without leave (AWOL) for almost a month.

After Deanna Reynolds’ family filed the missing persons report nearly a week ago, the Utica Police Department in New York confirmed the Reynoldses were found in “good health.”

Reynolds, a 35F intelligence analyst with the 95th Civil Affairs Brigade, left voluntarily and has been marked AWOL since Jan. 17, a Fort Bragg official said on Monday.

The Rhea County Sheriff’s Office in Tennessee found the family at the Jackson Island Campsite, according Lt. Bryan Coromato of the Utica Police Department.

Reynolds, 25; his wife, Deanna; and their 19-month-old son, Cooper, were last seen by Deanna Reynolds’ family on Feb. 5 in Utica, WTVD reported.

Utica police said her family had not heard from her since Feb. 6, according to The Fayetteville Observer. Her family filed missing persons reports for her and her son. Deanna Reynolds’ parents were both born and raised in the Utica area, but have lived outside of New York for the past 23 years.

Coromato told The Utica Observer-Dispatch that the last communication the family had with Travis and Deanna was a text message on Feb. 6 saying they were headed to Niagara Falls. He said Utica police contacted Canada and were told that the family had not crossed the border.

“They kind of went dark on their own,” Coromato said. “They cut off communication with the family.”

The Reynoldses are stationed at Fort Bragg and live in Fayetteville, but were in Utica visiting family, according to multiple reports.

Fort Bragg officials declined to comment on whether there were any pending charges for Reynolds or if he would be court martialed.

The Reynoldses were traveling with their two dogs, a husky and a German shepherd, according to several news reports, and were believed to be headed toward Niagara Falls, N.Y., in a 2016 silver Honda Fit with a North Carolina license plate EHJ-6976.

Police did not suspect foul play.

The Utica Police Department has been in touch with officials at Fort Bragg about the family’s disappearance, the Observer reported.

Reynolds is a specialist with the 95th Civil Affairs Brigade at Fort Bragg – part of 1st Special Forces Command – which works to support military commanders by partnering and improving relationships with civil authorities and civilian populations in the commander’s area of operations during peace and war. They may be involved in disaster prevention, management and recovery, and with human and civil infrastructure assistance programs.

A servicemember who goes AWOL has 30 days to return to his or her post before they are administratively classified as a deserter, dropped from unit rolls amd considered a wanted person in the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC), subject to arrest by any law enforcement officer.

Depending on the circumstances of a servicemember going AWOL, they could face penalties up to a court martial and jail time.

The Army accumulates anywhere between 2,500 and 4,000 AWOL and desertion charges annually. Typically soldiers are released from the military with “other than honorable” or “bad conduct” discharges.

Camila Molina: 919-829-4538, @Cmolina__

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