The Saga Unfolds  | American Journalism Review
From AJR,   October 1997

The Saga Unfolds   

Compiled by Sinead O'Brien Early June 1996 1st Lt. Kelly Flinn engages in sexual relations with an enlisted man, Senior Airman Colin Thompson

By Sinéad OBrien
Sinéad O'Brien is a former AJR editorial assistant.     

Related reading:
   » Pilot Errors
   » The Charges Against Flinn

Early June 1996

  • 1st Lt. Kelly Flinn engages in sexual relations with an enlisted man, Senior Airman Colin Thompson


  • July 3, 1996
  • Flinn and Marc Zigo engage in sexual relations


  • July 18, 1996
  • Flinn is confronted by a superior officer with complaints from Zigo's wife, Gayla, and says she will cease contact with Zigo


  • August-November 1996
  • Flinn continues her affair with Zigo


  • November 19, 1996
  • A fellow lieutenant, under investigation for sexual misconduct, alleges Flinn is involved in an affair with Zigo


  • November 25-26, 1996
  • After allegations of the affair surface, Flinn is investigated and gives two sworn statements denying any sexual relationship with Zigo


  • November 27, 1996
  • Zigo gives a sworn statement admitting a sexual relationship with Flinn


  • Early December 1996
  • After another complaint to base security police from Gayla Zigo, Flinn receives a written order to cease all contact with Zigo and Thompson


  • December 22, 1996
  • Flinn takes Zigo to her parents' home for the holidays


  • January 28, 1997
  • Charges of fraternization, violation of an order, adultery, conduct unbecoming an officer and making a false official statement are filed against Flinn


  • February 19, 1997
  • Without Flinn's knowledge, a five-line press release lists the charges against her


  • Mid-April 1997
  • The Flinn family hires Duffey Communications to handle public relations


  • April 29, 1997
  • A long profile sympathetic to Flinn runs on the front page of the Washington Post's Style section


  • Early May 1997
  • Sympathetic stories about Flinn fill the media


  • May 22, 1997
  • In lieu of a court-martial, Flinn is given a general discharge


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