Phony homeless veterans

| September 25, 2010

BooRadley sends along this article from her hometown about a homeless guy who claims to be a veteran.Boo says he’s not even close;

“I’m here because of trouble I had in the past,” said Brian Shawver, 36, of Lorain. “I burned my bridges with the family and split. I’ve been here since the end of June. I served in the first Iraq war.

“One time, I was in line at McDonald’s and this lady in front of me was putting down homeless people, talking about the picture in the paper showing all the tents. At the end of the conversation, she told her daughter, ‘We need to get to church.’ I got upset. I said that’s my tent in the picture,” Shawver said.

“We (homeless people) don’t fit any designation. People think we’re always drinking and doing drugs and that we’re dirty and nasty. I lost everything I had. And this is where you wind up when that happens,” Shawver said.

“I’m hoping something happens with the shelter. If not, I’ll just have to get extra blankets,” he said.

He says his age is 36 – the first Gulf War was 19 years ago, that means he was 17. Boo says he was in high school during the Gulf War. When he eventually joined the Navy, he was chaptered out. There’s video of his interview at the link.

He “burned bridges” with his family? He’s freaking 36 years old…what’s he need his family to do for him? I guess it’s just easier to camp out behind the local church and hope someone brings him a blanket.

Since his story about being a veteran is false, the one about the line in MacDonald’s is probably manufactured, too.

I remember watching the news after the Gulf War and the program I was watching was about homeless veterans from the Gulf War. One guy they were interviewing was talking about his wounds and sacrifice. The reporter asked him when he went to the Gulf and he said he got there in May. Either he was there three months before Hussein invaded Kuwait or he got there when the rest of us were leaving. The reporter realized he was talking with a fake, I could tell by the look on his face and he tried to quickly end the interview…without mentioning the guy was full of shit.

That’s why I doubt this whole thing about massive numbers of veterans living on the streets. Every freakin’ homeless guy I’ve talked to claimed to be a veteran. One guy in Syracuse, when I told him I was a veteran, too, asked why I wearing a suit as if all veterans are homeless.

The media perpetuates this story by interviewing these liars without doing ten seconds worth of math.

Category: Media, Phony soldiers

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  1. Veterans Suicide: Facts Against Chatter | USNI Blog | July 18, 2013
  1. WOTN says:

    You’re on target again Jonn. Have a few stories myself in the vein.

    One “Homeless Vet” held a sign “will work for food.” When offered the VFW number, he refused to call. When offered a job starting the next day, he instead wanted enough money for a hotel room.

    There is an annual 3 day event in Nashville that specifically reaches out to “homeless vets” where the VFW is again quite well represented. Same people each year, without any evidence of their claims getting help again on their stories alone.

    Whether Suicide, PTSD, or Homeless Vets, the numbers are inflated to support the victimization of Our Veterans, the filling of coffers of Non-Profits, and the “evidence” politicians support Our Troops. In each of these arenas, too few are willing to stand up and challenge the inflated numbers, the victimization, or present a REAL solution to the real issues abused to advance political party.

  2. ROS says:

    The VA hands out tents?

  3. Wal-mart in my area has a small woods next to it. Wal-mart griped about trash blowing out of the woods into the parking lot. My friend owns the woods, and says that cops won’t keep people out unless he will file charges on every incident. Won’t even go in and “roust” them.
    I put my 110# Great Pyrenees on alert and we walk in. Every single time one of these junkies/drunks/useless types, will claim to be a Veteran. My first standard question is: “If you were a Vet, what was your Army Serial Number?” They claim to have forgotten it, always. They don’t even know that Army Serial numbers are from my day, (I’m 70), and that they do have a Social Security number. Know that because they get SSI. One guy was in “The 1st Company of Charlie Battalion of the RANGERS”. Told him that was a heroic outfit, where did he fight at? Of course, he was in Somalia. I asked whether he was in the battle of Fallujah Somalia? “Hell Yes!” Sez he.
    I shoot their photos, with an empty camera, then run them out of the woods. Not a damned one of them would take a full time job, and all are high in one way or another.

  4. Ben says:

    Phoney homeless vets? Got them in my hometwon too.

    I swear there isn’t a homeless man between here and Tulsa who wasn’t at Khe San.

  5. AW1 Tim says:

    The leftists want to show large numbers of homeless vets, PTSD-suffering vets, and addicted vets. It fits their meme, and helps them with their separate and conquer program for ruling this nation. The left is all about creating victims, so they can “help” them. It’s sort of a nation Münchausen by proxy syndrome that they all are infected with.

  6. BooRadley says:

    very well said, Tim.

  7. I know some are exaggerated, but there are a lot of real ones. I saw one on the street yesterday who had his VA service-connected ID card attached to his sign. I don’t know if he’s embellishing his service, but he is a vet at least. I know there are more.

    There but for the grace of God goes you or I…who can say if circumstances are different where we might not have been?

  8. Scott says:

    “I know some are exaggerated, but there are a lot of real ones”

    I am willing to bet the public perception of the number of homeless veterans far overreaches the actual number of homeless veterans. And anyways, when the term “homeless vet” is used, too many people think that must mean the person is homeless BECAUSE they are a vet. One doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with the other.

  9. fm 3-05.70 says:

    I met a homeless “vet” at the Louisiana All-Veterans Reunion last year. We were out by the USS Kidd and somehow the Army (and Navy) decided a veterans reunion would be a dandy place to get leads. Anyway, they had me setup on the levee and the homeless were in abundance. One guy approached me telling me he was with 3/187 in Vietnam. His story sounded legit, and most people will claim something more generic than an Airborne Infantry battalion. He started telling me he was trying to get the bus fare to make it to the VA hospital to take care of his hernia. When he showed it to me (without forewarning) I gave him $5 real quick. He had a three or four inch protrusion from his stomach.

    A short while later, I heard a ruckus and saw security knock the guy down. He subsequently came back to me and acted like he’d never met me before, telling me his story again but this time he was a Delta Ranger or some nonsense and security was lucky he didn’t want to hurt them. He made haste to depart when he noticed the head of security coming up the hill.

    The guy got me, but I guess he became aggressive with some of the people down the hill, leading to the altercation. As for the Reunion, poor weather and faulty advertising made it less than a success, so myself and the organizers tried to kill the couple of kegs that had been tapped. We were offering beer to everyone who passed by, except the homeless. Unfortunately, another phony veteran was drinking with us. He has front page honors on POW Network now.

  10. Miss Ladybug says:

    I’ve seen the same “homeless vet” on the north side of the Wm. Cannon & Brodie intersection in SW Austin. Not ever been in a position to talk to him/give him anything (he’s on the center median next to the turn lane, and I’m usually always going straight). I can’t help but wonder, every time I see him, if he’s for real or not…

  11. 1AirCav69 says:

    This has been going on for so long it’s unbelievable. The VA keeps getting increasing funds for it’s Homless Program. In all my years in the VA I can honestly say I NEVER met a real homless Vet that was a real combat veteran. All of my patients were combat vets, all with serious PTSD, and all had held jobs and had careers of some sort. Many were losing those careers after battling PTSD for 20+ years. They were at the end of their ropes BUT due to them being real with records to back them up, the VA, after many battles, were there to help. Part of my job was working in a homless shelter 2 days a week. I DID NOT MEET ONE…NOT ONE COMBAT VET. The guys that were there had either serious mental health problems or were self-inflicted alcohol/drug problems. When I first got there most tried to bs me about their vet status until they found out I was a combat vet/Purple Heart recipient. They thought I was just another Social Worker who spent my life in school. Their tunes changed immediately.

    FM…don’t feel bad being taken. At the begining I too was spending my own money buying bus tickets to get homless vets to Mountain Home, TN to the inpatient alcohol program and domicillary. One day the Greyhound bus guy stopped in to see me at the Vet Center. He told me that he’d had enough and had to come talk to me. It would seem all these vets I was spending my money on would turn the ticket back in for a refund after I left. He felt bad for me and wanted my permission to make any more tickets NON-REFUNDABLE. I agreed but never paid to send any more of them, anywhere. If these guys truly want help, they can get it at MANY VA Homeless program centers. Most don’t becuase they either don’t want it or aren’t vets anyway.