This is Adam Spotanski, he really was a paratrooper in the 2/503rd of the Herd (the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team), he really was injured in the war in Afghanistan, his records show a Purple Heart, but they don’t show a Bronze Star Medal;
There are also questions about how he was awarded the Purple Heart. Here’s the story he tells in public;
But, here’s what folks who were there say;
On August 22, 2007 in Aranas, Nuristan, Afghanistan; Our base was attacked by 70-100 enemy fighters. We had the advantage of being on the side of a mountain and after taking half of our base in 10 minutes we 20 soldiers fought for 3 violent hours to a a decisive American victory. At the time PFC Adam Spotanski was in the military and assigned to us in C Co. 2/503d, 173d ABCT. During the fire fight, at the plea of another soldier for help, PFC Spotanski cowered in a corner. Later, after the firing had stopped, we were at the highest post on our little COP. It had been at least 30 minutes-an hour of silence and I had PFC Spotanski and another soldier, SPC Langevin clear debris off the top of the 12 foot post. After turning my head PFC Spotanski “fell” off of the post and was impaled in his rear end by a stake that was used to support a HESCO barrier. He was evacuated and later discharged for nerve damage.
Now, after he was evacuated and re-stationed at Walter Reed Army Medical Center he complained about never receiving a Purple Heart and later was forced into silence by our chain of command because he was acting inappropriately. He was awarded the Purple Heart by Water Reed but it was later revoked because of the sworn statements provided.
I have those sworn statements from Spotanski’s leadership, but I’m not posting them because they contain PII, so I tend to believe this account rather than Spotanski’s. According to the statements, there was no incoming enemy fire when he fell from the tower, so he doesn’t qualify for the Purple Heart, but he made the POGs award him one at Water Reed once he got out of earshot of his unit.
The author of the above letter continues;
Four years later Spotanski contacted Operation First Response feeding them a false story about his “heroics” and even standing up in front of crowds speaking for the organization. In the picture attached you will notice that Spotanski is wearing the following awards that were not awarded to him”;
The Bronze Star Medal (possibly with “V” device)
The Purple Heart
The Army Commendation medal with V device
[Spotanski] also claimed before our deployment that he had Lupus. We later found out that he was a compulsive liar.
The reason I am bringing this up is because I have recently found a video that was posted by Operation First Responder with him speaking for the organization. It has since been taken down.
This story is is highly infuriating to a number of soldiers. 2/503d became the one if not the most valorous unit in the Army [during] the OEF VIII deployment over 15 months between May 2007- August 2008.
Some of the soldiers who were at this fight received the following awards;
LT Matthew Ferrara (deceased) The Silver Star
SPC Sean Langevin (deceased) The Bronze Star with V device
ME SSG Jason Baldwin the Silver Star
Former SGT Kyle White- Arcom with V
Former SPC Kain Schilling- Purple Heart recipient Medically discharged for wounds sustained in a seperate engagement
So, even though Spotanski had an honorable career in the Army as a paratrooper, he felt it wasn’t enough and even scammed Walter Reed clerks into embellishing his records – so he awards himself a Purple Heart for being a klutz. And he lied to his parents who put this message in the local paper and arranged for the local Patriot Guard Riders to escort him home when he arrived from Walter Reed;
What is it with New Jersey?