Vietnam veteran shamed at Charlotte airport

| November 20, 2015

Jack Hughes

Jack Hughes, who we have verified is a Vietnam War Marine veteran and who has earned at least one Purple Heart Medal was cornered by two men who claimed to be active duty Marines at the Charlotte, North Carolina airport;

“All of a sudden he jumps up and he’s got a camera in my face screaming ‘your medals are crooked. You’re a fake. You’re not a marine,'” an emotional Hughes told WBTV. “He kept screaming at me, telling me I was nothing, that everything I had was fake. I was a fake and phony.”

The Gastonia man said it happened Saturday, shortly after he and his wife had just landed. He went to St. Louis to take part in a Veterans Day program at their grand-daughter’s school.

Hughes said he was wearing his suit jacket with medals and ribbons. As he entered Concourse C, he said the man approached him with a camera, insisting that Hughes was an impostor.

Hughes tried to show them his VA card to prove that he is indeed a veteran, but the pair smelled blood in the water. Finally police intervened.

I don’t need to tell you that this isn’t the type of behavior that we condone here at TAH and I doubt if any of you would act like this. But, it is strange that the website “Popular Military” are the folks most responsible for the dissemination of this story, because they’re the folks most responsible for this kind of confrontation. They post videos over there of any kind of so-called Stolen Valor confrontation. They encourage that behavior – you know, even though there are no veterans on the staff at Popular Military – they bought the website from a group of veterans. But, chasing a homeless guy into traffic because he’s wearing ACU trousers isn’t really stolen valor enforcement. Popular Military will publish any video that is sent to them with total disregard for content. That’s why I didn’t link them in this article.

The best stolen valor videos are the videos where the thief is allowed to talk – like that “Sergeant Colonel” video we posted last week. or the George Feck video, where we recorded Feck while he told his tall tales about “gay spray”, after we had his FOIA which we posted with his recording. But, this random harassment of people in the airport needs to stop. This isn’t a business for amateurs.

I don’t know if I’ve told this story before, but when I was a private and flying out of Savannah airport, I was confronted by a Marine NCO who accused me of wearing stuff that I wasn’t authorized. This was the days between the end of the National Defense Service Medal for Vietnam and before the Army Service Ribbon came out – so I was wearing no personal awards, besides my jump wings and my marksmanship badge. The unit I was assigned to had four or five unit citations and that was his complaint – I was wearing decorations that hadn’t been awarded since the second world war. Clearly, I was authorized to wear those awards, but the Marine NCO who didn’t understand the Army system wouldn’t listen to an Army private, but the fact that he didn’t understand nor would he listen – that didn’t stop him from locking me up at attention while he humiliated me in the busy airport. Finally, an NCO from my unit straightened him out.

I guess my point is that folks should stay in their lane.

Category: Dumbass Bullshit

Comments (147)

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  1. QM1 says:

    Wouldn’t want to be in those guys shoes if/when word of this gets back to their command in Lejeune.

    • HMCS (FMF) ret. says:

      Some SGTMAJ or 1st SGT is gonna be chewing a whole lotta ass over this shit… and that’s before the BN CO/XO gets a hold of them!

      I see these assclowns doing a lot of “special details” for the rest of their enlistments…

  2. Former11b says:

    That Marine who chewed you out was a dipshit. Phonies don’t wear a stack of unit awards and nothing else. I hope that NCO from your unit dispensed with the professional pleasantries and told that guy to get fucked.

  3. Former11b says:

    All that being said, I like the way the Marines do their unit awards, wearing only the ones they were personally awarded and in the standard Ribbon Rack. As much as I liked wearing my unit’s fourragere, I’d gladly give up wearing it and the PUCs if would get all that stuff off the right side of the uniform. Army uniforms have an unfortunate tendency to look like Christmas trees.

    • Rerun0369 says:

      Marines assigned to 5th and 6th Marines wear the fourragere as well. Once you leave the unit, you are no longer authorized to wear it.

      • Former11b says:

        That’s interesting, I didn’t know that. But all other previously awarded unit awards are not authorized, right?

      • NECCSEABEECPO says:

        I never herd that once you left the unit you are no longer authorized to wear it. I am Navy and was awarded it with I MEF and it is a permanent part of my record. If you earned at a unit you are authorized to have from that point on. Some of these unit awards do not come until years after you have left the unit but if you were there at the time you are authorized. The Navy and Marine Corps UNIFROM REGS are similar.

        • David says:

          Way it was explained to me thirty years ago was that if you were IN the units when the award was made it became a permanent medal you wore like any personal award. If it was awarded to the unit before your arrival, though, you wore it as long as you were in that unit only.

          • Hondo says:

            David, that’s Army policy – unit awards are authorized for permanent wear by the individual if you were assigned while the unit earned them. Others earned by the unit prior to assignment are only worn temporarily (e.g. worn while assigned to the unit and removed on transfer out).

            Pretty sure the Navy and USMC do ONLY the former – e.g., the only unit awards you wear are those you were there to help the unit earn. I’m not positive, though, and maybe one of our Navy/USMC types can clarify that point.

            • Rerun0369 says:

              You are correct Hondo, in order to wear a unit award, an individual must have served in the unit during the time period the award was issued for. The French Fourragere however falls under different rules, which I posted just below.

              • Hondo says:

                Rerun0369: thanks for the confirmation.

                Just one of the differences between the services when it comes to awards and decorations. Another is the criteria for award of the “V” device on selected decorations. Both criteria for the “V” device and which decorations may be awarded with “V” device vary by service, with only the USN and USMC having identical criteria.

                • Rerun0369 says:

                  Or that the Navy/Marines place stars denoting multiple awards instead of clusters like the Army/Air Force.

                  • Hondo says:

                    That too.

                    Except for Defense Awards (DDSM, DSSM, DMSM, JSCM, and JSAM). On those, the Navy/USMC use clusters. (smile)

                  • Just An Old Dog says:

                    To add confusion the Marines and Navy use different size stars and colors. The small stars are used for campaign and unit awards and are bronze and silver while the larger stars are for personal awards and are gold and silver.
                    Two other things that are confusing. awards such as the Good Conduct and National defense are considered campaign awards, also depending on the era/phase of a campaign may designate the number of stars on a campaign ribbon, not he number of times a Marine deployed there.

                    • Peter the Bubblehead says:

                      Not entirely true. Good Conduct Medals are personal awards, but still only get bronze or silver stars for multiple awards.

            • Peter the Bubblehead says:

              I was only authorized to wear unit awards awarded when I was considered part of ship’s company (or assigned to the shore command). My boat had many NUCs, MUCs, and Battle E’s prior to my arrival but I was not authorized to wear any of those ribbons until the boat earned them again while I was aboard.

              • Just An Old Dog says:

                Good Conduct Medals don’t get a large star for subsequent awards. The way it was explained to me is that though it’s awarded to individuals it’s considered a “Campaign” of sorts,, for proper behavior.

        • Atkron says:

          Same works with the Battle E…we are authorized to wear it from the time the Ship/Squadron receives it to the end of time.

        • Rerun0369 says:

          From MCO 1650.19J:

          b. French Fourragere

          (1) The French Ministry of War awarded the Fourragere to those units cited two or more times in the
          French Orders of the Army during World War I. The Fourragere became a part of the uniform of the
          unit recognized.

          (2) The 5th and 6th Marine Regiments have been so cited and all personnel are authorized to wear
          the Fourragere while serving in these units.

          (3) There are no active duty Marines authorized to wear the Fourragere permanently.

          (4) The Commanders of the 5th and 6th Marine Regiments are authorized
          to issue the Fourragere.

          This does not apply to other unit awards such as the NUC/MUC/PUC/JMUC, those are authorized for permanent wear by the individual once awarded.

  4. Ex-PH2 says:

    Some day, I’m going to get back into my boot camp dark blues, slap that rare and anxiously coveted NDSM (gedunk ribbon, for the uninformed) on it. But it will only be owing to my returning to that size.

    No, this is not the way to behave toward anyone. The people who do these things are asking to get the crap beat out of them by someone who brooks no nonsense about it. I’m waiting for that video, personally.

  5. NECCSEABEECPO says:

    Shortly after invasion in Iraq and we were back in the states at a military veterans event and a Vietnam Vet Challenged one of my guy’s because he had a PUC on. I was called over from some of my troops and had to intervene,he then started on me and I clarified well Sir a lot of my guy’s and myself just returned from Iraq and we were part of the ground invasion and as such we were attached to the I MEF who was awarded the PUC. He said well that has not been awarded to any one sense Nam.

    Brake…Brake… Jonn have you herd anything about the attacks in Mali on the Hotel? My community does a lot of Civil Humanitarian work around those parts for SOTF and AFRICOM. From what I first herd there were US Troops at the hotel. It looks like the US is on site helping. Do not know if they are there helping because there could be US Troops in the hotel, those are the places we stayed at when working over there. So if you have any news please pass forward.

    • MustangCryppie says:

      More than one Navy unit has been awareded the PUC.

      • SFC D says:

        Yup, there’s a ton of Army Signal Corps types with a Navy PUC too

      • NECCSEABEECPO says:

        I know that, I never said one unit I was just trying to let him know we were authorized to have it. His comment was it has not been issued sense Nam. I told him he was wrong.

      • NECCSEABEECPO says:

        Were did I say one unit I said we were attached to the I MEF and received it by the way my Unit was one of 4 (same type units) others I know of attached to them and received it. Point being at the time not to many people had the PUC before 2003. yes by the way not many after Nam, it is a Combat award. By the way only units attached to I MEF in 2003 ONLY. Other Marine Units deployed after have not been issued. I don’t know about the rest of the Navy I am GROUND GUY AND THAT IS WHAT CONCERNS ME AND EFFECTS ME. We are always attached to Marines incase you did not know that and now working with all the SOTF’s so the awards we receive may not look normal to people who do not know what we do. By the way on the list only Navy units FOR OIF/OEF our 1NCD/I MEF/MEG 2003 and NSW Task GRP 3 UNIT 3. those are the only Navy units listed.

      • Silentium Est Aureum says:

        You’re probably thinking of the same folks I am; the USS PARCHE. During her time, she was awarded 8 or 9 PUCs. So it is in fact possible for someone to have multiple Navy PUCs, but it would be exceedingly rare.

  6. Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

    Well when one of these clowns gets hurt or hurts someone who legitimately responds with equal aggression this will get a nice big looky see from the media…and guess what? Everyone in the SV community doing the good work will be linked with all the assholes doing this bush league idiot shit…

    Some of these older guys might be packing heat boys, be aware of that before you get up in somebody’s face…as Jonn likes to say be careful fucking with old guys, we’ll shoot you DRT…

    I like your story Jonn, and I like you responded with dignity. I wish I could say I was capable of the same restraint in a similar circumstance, but I wasn’t. Another in a long list of lessons learned along the way.

  7. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    The bastards who confronted Marine Jack Hughes should be vilified and pilloried. Marine Hughes is a Nam Vet who served at a time when returning home meant receiving the disapproval and spittle of hippies and punks who held individual servicemen responsible for doing what our country asked. Not infrequently, the attacks occurred in airport terminals. For Marine Hughes to be accosted and assaulted by two Marines at an airport terminal is beyond despicable. This upsets me no end, as it does you. And if matters weren’t horrible enough, the man was returning from a flight home after being his eight-year old grand daughter’s personal Veteran hero at her school. I could just punch the crud out of something right now. Bastards.

  8. Dave Hardin says:

    Most people know my position on jumping in the face of someone like this, particularly when there are two of them against someone who can not defend themselves.

    Once again the story would have had a much different ending if I was in the Airport. Clock is ticking on that event.

    That being said, anyone walking around with two Purple Hearts pinned to their ass at the same time can expect to be questioned about it.

    A Marine crying about the horror of it all is an embarrassment. My guess would be he was trying to crawl under a rock when something went boom and he strained his vaginal lining.

    Maybe not, but this PTSD claim of his goes no place with me. I smell VA claim being worked on. Fuck it, lets just give everyone who ever thought about putting on a uniform a check every month.

    I have no doubt this guy has hurt feelings, I just have no idea where he got them in the first place. I turned mine into supply at PISC.

    Just the other day some intellectual giant called me bad names on this site. I am still trying to figure out how to operate this tampon thingy. I have been surfing UC Berkley’s site for instructions on Metro-sexual hygiene but have been unsuccessful so far.

    I would love to hear this guys tales of daring do but will forgo the experience of sitting around a room full of pissy veterans talking about their feelings.

    He sounds like the guy we need at the front lines against ISIS. Fucking embarrassment.

    Army Uniforms……I just salute everyone of them, I cant tell if I am talking to a Pvt or a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

    • Steve says:

      Yeah, it’s really embarrassing that this 66 year old man became emotional after two much younger punks got in his faced and harassed him. Too bad he isn’t as tough as you.

      • Dave Hardin says:

        I don’t care if I am 99 or 9, you dont have to be a bad ass to not be a pussy.

      • Dave Hardin says:

        Maybe, just maybe, I have already confirmed he has 1 Purple Heart. Maybe, I have already done 20 minutes of research that shows he might not have 2.

        Any Private in the Corps knows you do not display two of the same medals side by side. Even if he earned them, he can expect to be questioned about it, because he should know better.

        As far as being a pussy goes, well I think the video speaks for itself.

        I spent my entire military career in the Corps sitting behind a desk at Family Services listening to people bitch. Well, not really, between deployments I seen my kids once or twice.

    • Ex-PH2 says:

      This is why they call you Hardass, you know. Kittens mewing make you weep. You melt over puppies. Admit to it!

      • Dave Hardin says:

        Ok, I tear up a little when you pour your gravy for just anyone and tears of joy when I make you smile.

        UC Berlkey has some great emotional support online courses, I have been studying.

        • HMCS (FMF) ret. says:

          Please don’t tell us that you are transforming into one of them “sensitive, New Age guy” types, Dave?

          • Dave Hardin says:

            I thought I would give it a go. Seems being sensitive is the current craze. Besides, am I ever going to find another woman that knows how to cook, likes fine wine, reads Azimov, understands Chaos Theory, quotes Nietzsche, and knows when to tell me to STFU?

            Hmmm….

    • Former11b says:

      You mean the two purple hearts he actually fucking earned? Uh, yeah sorry but as far I care he can wear them however the fuck he wants. I also like how you’re shitting on the possibility that he might have PTSD too. Audie Murphy had PTSD and your secret squirrel bullshit exploits in Beirut weren’t worth the corn kernels in Audie’s shit.

      • Dave Hardin says:

        Ouch, that kinda hurt. So thats what it feels like. I will rush down to the next circle jerk and cry because you were mean to me.

        • Former11b says:

          Maybe you can talk about being so jealous of an older Marine who was actually wounded in combat when the beat you could do was unverifiable bullshit.

          • Dave Hardin says:

            I’ll make you a deal. When I get his FOIA back if there are two PH’s on there I will publicly apologize to you and to him.

            If he is sporting around with two he didnt earn…..well you can take that however you like.

            I am going with the odds here. I could be wrong.

            • Former11b says:

              You’re going to put a FOIA in on a guy who was actually in Vietnam because you don’t like the way he chose to wear medals he likely earned?

              Get a life.

            • Ex-PH2 says:

              If I may – he might have had broken service, OR he might have been given two actual PHs. Let’s find out before we set up a bitch-slapping contest, mmmkay, piglets?

              • Former11b says:

                Again, there is zero reason to pull this guy’s records.

                From now on let’s all just staple our DD-214s and related records to our chest so some asshole in an airport can verify that we’re legit.

                • Dave Hardin says:

                  On that issue you have a valid point. Really, what are we supposed to do walk around with our DD214.

                  Worse than that, what is my family supposed to do? Can my daughter not be proud of my service without having a briefcase full of paperwork to prove it.

                  Sending off for a FOIA should not insult any Veteran. I know for a fact he has one PH. I hope all of his awards are legit.

                  If we can’t even verify a persons service and awards then how do we stop those who are posers?

                • Dave Hardin says:

                  What we dont do for sure is attack them in an airport, of that there is no doubt.

                • Ex-PH2 says:

                  No reason? Then you’ve forgotten the Colonel nurse who repelled out of helicopters over there (her words) already?

    • L. Taylor says:

      “but this PTSD claim of his goes no place with me. I smell VA claim being worked on.”

      Two purple hearts…

      PTSD seems legit.

      • Dave Hardin says:

        I know, that is the shame with it. Often people do not need to embellish their service to qualify for PTSD. If I agree with that or not is besides the point.

        He has one Purple Heart, I have read the report on how he got it. There is nothing so far that indicates he has two, but he very well may, I doubt that claim but we shall see.

        PTSD, sadly just about anyone who served can qualify these days, combat or even deployment overseas has nothing to do with qualifying.

    • Common Sense says:

      Since when are two Purple Hearts something suspicious? My uncle earned that and more during the Vietnam War:

      http://www.wikiwand.com/en/Jon_E._Swanson

      Unfortunately for his wife, two babies, and family, he didn’t survive to get spit on and then accosted in an airport.

      • Rerun0369 says:

        One of my close buddies has 4, it was also something of a running joke about staying far away from him on patrol. I know a few other guys with 2 Purple Hearts, hell one of my young Marines received 2 PH’s in one deployment. Only got to conduct two patrols, first time outside the wire stepped on an IED and got peppered by frag, comes back three months later and gets two of his fingers shot off. Deployment was done after that.

        Didn’t know multiple PH’s were something to be suspicious about.

  9. TheCloser says:

    In this view: http://popularmilitary.com/vietnam-veteran-humiliated-and-assaulted-by-active-duty-marines/

    Looks like he’s sporting a SEAL Trident and a POW ribbon. Just sayin…

  10. NECCSEABEECPO says:

    I think it is a big glob and anchor. It does look like POW ribbon not sure. I don’t think that is trident.

    • Hondo says:

      If you’re talking the ribbon on the bottom row on the viewer’s left, that’s the RVN Civil Actions Unit Citation. My understanding is that it was commonly awarded to USMC units in Vietnam.

      Not sure what that is on his lapel. But whatever that is on his lapel, I’m pretty sure it is NOT the SEAL Trident.

    • Rerun0369 says:

      Nevermind, the video finally loaded on the other site. That is definitely a POW ribbon.

  11. Another Pat says:

    I have to ask.

    Why was he wearing his jacket in the Airport?

    • OldSarge57 says:

      There is no law against it. The latest thing is to encourage wearing awards to special functions & such. I don’t know about the Marines, but AR 670-1 and DA PAM 670-1 address this. Regardless, we’ve lost civility and respect as a society. This reflects poorly on those two young Marines. I hope they get straightened out.

      • OldSarge57 says:

        Sorry. Part of my comments are valid, but I didn’t quite get who was doing the confronting until I read back through.

    • 2/17 Air Cav says:

      Because he wanted to, I guess. Maybe he was proud of the reason for the St Louis trip. Maybe he was happy to have regarded by his grand daughter as her hero and just kept the jacket on for his return. Maybe he was chilly. I don’t understand why it matters. The jacket was his, I assume, and whatever he adorned the jacket with was his too.

      To me, it’s a step in the right direction when a Marine Nam Veteran can feel easy talking about an incident such as this on local TV. Time was, his being accosted in an airport in connection with his service would not have been news or of interest to the media.

    • Pinto Nag says:

      I agree with your question, AP. It’s rhetorical, of course. I was married to a veteran who wore small pins that would identify him as a veteran to other veterans. He liked to be recognized, and he liked to talk the talk with his fellow brothers-in-arms. He NEVER wore any form of medal or decoration, just the pins.

      I do wonder about him wearing the jacket at the airport, though. I also wonder about Marines accosting and haranguing an older, and obviously ailing, man without calmly questioning him and listening to him first. But then, politeness in society today is about as common as hen’s teeth.

      • LIRight says:

        It could be that as a Vietnam Veteran he never felt comfortable to even acknowledge that he fought in Vietnam.

        I think you have to try to understand the mindset, long time feelings of forced anonymity and silence demanded by the politics and much of the population at large during the 60’s and 70’s.

        It was tougher than you may remember or realize.

        • Pinto Nag says:

          Your last sentence is correct. I was a child/young teen during Vietnam, and I was raised in Savannah GA for most of it. With Hunter Army Airfield and Ft. Stewart in the area, all I remember for the military of that time was respect.

  12. LIRight says:

    I think this story (Jonn’s included) makes me more sick to my stomach than some of the proven POSERS posted on this site.

    I personally don’t wear the hats or jackets with the various available patches and unit emblems….that’s my choice, but I do wear a small CIB, Purple Heart pin from MOPH and an American Flag from the DAV when wearing a suit or sports jacket.

    With my temperament I think I would have been rolling around on the ground with the two assholes in the first story….definitely not with the Marine Sgt., although he deserved an ass-kicking.

    Hopefully, some lessons were learned.

  13. Tman says:

    We’re going to see more and more of these ‘heroes’ trying to get their 15 minutes of fame by attempting to out or shame posers that are actual veterans.

    Still waiting for that one shitbag that called out that older former Marine gentleman sitting in an airport with his dress uniform.

  14. CLAW says:

    If you watch the 20 minute raw interview video from the article, Hughes says the first individual who jumped up into face first was a big man with a beard who said he was a former 0331 Machine Gunner. The supposedly active duty Marine didn’t enter the picture till later.
    What I got from the raw video, most of the confrontation concerned that bearded guy and not so much the active duty Marine.

  15. Ex-PH2 says:

    My only question is why didn’t Hughes ask those two idjits for their IDs?

    That could have solved the whole problem, that, and asking who they report to.

    • 2/17 Air Cav says:

      Probably because he was flabbergasted at being confronted by the big mouth with the pubic hair on his face and the big mouth’s silent partner.

      • LIRight says:

        The embarrassment felt by Mr. Hughes after being called out in a busy public place like that airport must have been overwhelming.

        This story really bothers me.

        • 2/17 Air Cav says:

          I’m with you LI Right. If this Marine wanted to wear his jacket inside out and upside down, he had every right to do so. The knuckleheads who accosted him in that terminal should be charged with attempted valor theft of a different sort–the sort where a legitimate combat Veteran, perhaps at long last willing and proud to wear a few mementos representing that service, has someone attempt to take that valor from him directly. This sucks. Some get it. Some don’t.

    • Ex-PH2 says:

      Okay, well, see, the first thing I would do is ask for ID. There was some guy hanging around my neighborhood last winter asking some peculiar questions. I asked him why he was there. He said he was a private detective, and believe me, he did not look like Magnum. He looked more like a midget Frank Burns.

      So I asked to see his ID and he showed it to me. That is the first thing you should do when or if someone starts taking you to task over something, especially if you know you’re in the right.

      I think Mr. Hughes was unnecessarily homed in on by a couple of wankers who really had nothing better to do than make nuisances of themselves. Since he seems like a nice guy, I would advise him to ask anyone who says ‘I’m AD’ to show his active duty ID. We ALL know we are supposed to have it on us at all time, in or out of uniform.

      But that’s just me. And I’m a bit confrontational myself, so I would get right up the noses of these two layabouts, anyway.

      If they were both AD Marines, as they claimed, why was one of them wearing a beard? Marines don’t even wear mustaches. Gunny Guzman would haul those two over the coals twice and leave them to roast a third time.

      • Joe Williams says:

        Ex, Ihave had my upper lip covered from 3 months in Nam till the end of my enlistment. I still wear it my kids and relatives Would not know me. Joe

  16. SWO_E4 says:

    Yeah, this Stolen Valor Video crap is getting ridiculous. First of all, calling someone out on having ever so slightly crooked medals on a garment that is not a uniform item is pretty stupid. That’s like calling out some one for not having a straight gig-line in civvies. It’s stupid. Second, if you want to catch stolen valor, you need to approach it from a different angle than the frontal assault. Assume they are what they claim, and ask questions they should know the answers to, if they feed you bullshit they’re either 1) Telling you lies because they don’t want to talk about it (generally not, you’ll more often get vague answers instead, when dealing with the real thing), or 2) They’re spitting bullshit because they don’t know the answers. You also listen to the way they talk, speech patterns will tell you if they have walked the walk. Direct confrontation is not the best way. I asked one of the ROTC cadets (prior service US Army SGT), why he was wearing OCP’s, I’d heard they were changing the regs, so it would be authorized, but hadn’t realized it had taken effect. I came off as sounding like I was trying to correct him, I wasn’t, I was just trying to figure out why he was in a different uniform from the other cadets. I never did figure out why. Not stolen valor, but still, if you confront, chose words carefully, so you don’t end up in a shouting match.

    • SWO_E4 says:

      Not that y’all don’t know that stuff already, but I had to say it, cuz people read these comments… They do tend to be hilarious.

    • Dave Hardin says:

      Great post. I most certainly would have asked this guy about his two Purple Hearts side by side. Probably without all the screaming and nonsense.

      Lets assume for the moment that he does rate both of them, I still would have told him to put a star on one of them and wear it with pride.

      Jumping into the face of someone with no benefit of doubt is never the right thing to do. I honestly hope he turns out to have two, I would rather eat my hat publicly than find out he is embellishing.

      • Former11b says:

        Oh my fuck. He is a sixty six year old vet who was awarded two purple hearts nearly fifty years ago. Medals he probably places a lot of personal value on. If he wants to wear both of them on a civilian jacket, its none of anybody’s fucking business. He is not wearing a Marine Uniform and does not need some overzealous prick stopping him in an airport to ask him why he’s wearing his awards in a way they disagree with.

        Get the over yourself.

      • Weekend Warrior in Texas says:

        If I want to wear everyy medal I was ever issued on my skivies, and some fucking know-it-all want to correct me, I would politely invite him to get in line to wait for his turn to lick all around my asshole.

  17. JimV says:

    This so called stolen valor issue is getting out of hand with “valor police” taking it upon themselves to confront people. Most of these phonies have a mental problem. The son of a friend of mine thinks he was a Navy Seal. He also thinks that their are people living in the attic of his Mother’s house and that aliens tap on his bedroom window late at night.

    • sj says:

      I liked an answer Jonn gave me earlier this week. He said in a post that he was holding back on some people. I asked what the criteria was. His answer was along the lines of he had to convince himself that they were deliberately posing.

      That’s the way to go about this, I think.

      • LIRight says:

        Determining an “authentic” stolen valor requires patience, investigative common sense and a knowledge of how to use the system (FOIA, etc.) and the POSER’s own words against him/her.

        Pure and simple…..it’s like being a cop or a detective investigating a crime. You don’t release the information unless and until you can defend it in a court of law.

        • Jonn Lilyea says:

          I just got off the phone with the FBI explaining to the agent how to bust a particularly onerous phony that he thinks is trying to profit from his lies. The agent called me. A first.

          • HMCS (FMF) ret. says:

            WOW!

            JONN IS “DA MAN”!!!

          • Hondo says:

            That is indeed a “good thing” – and a hopeful sign.

          • LIRight says:

            Jonn, congratulations!

            Your name is getting around and the fact that you adhere to some/all or more of the points I made just above bears that out!

            The FBI guy would NOT have called you unless he knew that you are reliable and honest.

            Nuff said!

            • 2/17 Air Cav says:

              That the FBI knows Jonn may not be such a good thing. Just kidding. I can see the entry on a certain blog or website now, “FBI investigation of stolen valor leads to Jonn Lilyea!” or some such stupid.

          • Dave Hardin says:

            I hope you got a call back number. I give your number out to every sales person that calls here.

            I renamed my WIFI router at the house, FBI Surveillance #5, just to keep my neighbors on the straight and narrow.

          • Fjardeson says:

            Congrats Jonn, the Feds consider you an expert! Nice.

          • MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

            I never get calls from the FBI!

            But I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night!

      • HMCS (FMF) ret. says:

        Discretion is the better part of valor… I think that Jonn does the right thing on this. Probably giving the individuals a chance to come clean and prove it before putting it out for the masses.

  18. OWB says:

    This situation is so utterly disgusting that it is difficult to respond politely. Others here have more than adequately expressed my outrage.

    If those who accosted this Marine were military they need a serious attitude adjustment. Reduction in rank for public display unbecoming would be a good place to start with the punitive charges.

    But “poser” on the part of the accusers seems more than a reasonable assumption to make. Most likely another one or two of those pesky lefties who delight in telling any lie trying to make our warriors look provocative. They’ve been doing it for 100 years now, with varying degrees of success.

  19. JimV says:

    http://veteranmedals.army.mil

    Speaking of awards, I ordered mine a couple months ago.

  20. MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

    This case is quite disgusting.

    No doubt if these two were Marines, they will be ferretted out by the weekend.

    • Just An Old Dog says:

      Havent seen the video people talk about, but if mr 0331 was active duty and walking around with a beard and it gets videoed his command can hammer his dick flat on that alone.
      Lots of Devil-dogs take leave time to sprout a beard but have enough common sense to shave it off before they go back to their AO.
      I remember I made the mistake of not shaving over a three day weekend and coming through the gate at Lejuene in 1983 still in civies. The MP Sergeant at the gate gave me a chioce of going inside and shaving or having a Minor Offense Report going to my command.
      I have seen Marines get office hours for being dumb enough to come to formation after 3 weeks leave without getting a haircut.
      Bottom line, you are supposed adhere to Marine Corps Grooming standards your entire time in, including leave and liberty.

    • mr. sharkman says:

      If those 2 are Marines, I’m hoping they’ll just man up, apologize to their honored older brother, and do whatever it takes to set things right between him and them and in his own head.

  21. Jarhead says:

    Don’t know what to say, but I always keep in mind the meaning of the term Semper Fi. Still I have to admit it is a bit embarrassing to see a former Marine whimper like this one. It is somewhat uncomfortable to see someone identifying as a former Marine being so obese and trying to pass himself off as a former Marine. The tears and triple chin would make me think twice about this guy’s service. But I do have enough sense to not loudly confront in public a person I might wonder about. I do not wear anything that connects me to RVN or the USMC, simply because it is in the past. Yep, I’m extremely proud of my service, but do not wear it on my sleeve for attention. It’s history, and about such which much I’d just as soon not have to remember. To each his own, and I do not fault anyone who served in ANY branch of the service. Then again, I’d prefer to be left alone and neither seek nor crave recognition.

    • Dave Hardin says:

      Semper Fi brother. If you ever need a shoulder to cry on ……. Go Army.

    • Just An Old Dog says:

      As far as former or retired Marines packing on the pounds it happens. If you are lucky enough to either have the metabolism to stay slim good for you.
      There were a bunch of my old unit fromn the 1990s who recently had a Marine Corps Ball. They all wore suits and ties and miniture medals.
      Not a single one of them was close to hieght and weight Standards.
      I can garuntee you if you tried to go in that room and tell them they weren’t Marines you would have went out feet first.

    • Ex-PH2 says:

      Diabetes mellitus is only one of the side effects of exposure to Agent Orange, which was widely used in Vietnam. Non-Hodgkins lymphoma is another.

      So before YOU go judging Mr. Hughes based on his waist size, or anyone else for that matter, you should take a step back and consider that.

      • sj says:

        Dang! Yo mean I can blame my heavy drop status on Agent Orange? I thought it was eating too much. /smile

      • Ex-PH2 says:

        Yes, absolutely. And while you’re at it, enjoy your life to the fullest.

      • Jarhead says:

        WHOA….for you and J. Dog both. I never said I was even near the size I was when in the Corps. And I do know if I were to wear some type of old uniform today out in public, I DO know people would look at me and say, “WTF?” My point is this; in today’s world people need to understand that you automatically become a target for some loud mouth asshole if you go out in public with anything which draws attention. You can’t expect the same respect when you travel the country wearing what 20 year olds wear with pride. In public, for that matter, I stay below the radar. Seldom address people I don’t know, get the hell out of Wal Mart when done, and generally speaking avoid talk of RVN. Truth is, if either of you saw me now, you’d say, “Who the
        hell is HE to talk?”.

        • Just An Old Dog says:

          Actually, being an “Old Dog” I don’t jump to conclusions about somebody’s service based on their waistline.
          I personally never wear military awards on civilian attire. But then again I’m retired and know a lot about regulations.
          There are a lot of legitimate veterans who did their time and got out and years later, as they got sentimental they decided they wanted to display their medals.
          They probably forgot a lot of the details about the precedence of awards, etc.
          In my opinion Mr Hughes appearance would raise some questions, but its nothing that a two minute converation wouldn’t clear up, with me shaking his hand and thanking him for his service.
          Then again I consider myself a professional, mature veteran.

  22. Silentium Est Aureum says:

    Can’t really add any more than has already been said.

    Even if this guy had been a phony, this is 100 percent the wrong way to confront them. And one should never ever go hands on with them.

    Compared to some of the others seen here, had this guy been a fake, on a scale of 1-10, he’d be about 1/2. Not even enough to make the next field of 64.

    • MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

      I have said it before and I will say it again, if it does not look, smell, sound and taste like a phony it probably is not. Phony give off many signals. The two who approached the Marine did not engage in any civil conversation. The conversation would have revealed immediately that it was a case of a proud former Marine and the two should have bought him lunch and thanked him for his service.

      Strong arming without the ability to apply simple rules of civil engagement will lead to this everytime. Even IF it is a phony, MIL personnel must always be on the high road (not just taking the high road).

  23. Grimmy says:

    Re: your last paragraph.

    I had a situation somewhat like that, except I was the Marine NCO.

    I can’t recall where it was, but it was one of the handful of times I was forced to mix with those outside my own tribe. Never much enjoyed those times… except the chow hall. All you heathen have or had way better chow halls. And more women. I did like the chow and women among the heathen tribes.

    Anyhoo, this one time, couldn’t have been at band camp because I didn’t and don’t play an instrument, I ran into an Army private in his dress uniform and he had a stack of fruit salad covering one whole side of his chest.

    So, I mosey on over to the young stud and ask him what’s up with all the ribbons and bangles. He said that those were unit awards and since he’d recently gotten assigned to his unit, he was authorized to wear them (and that reminds me of where it was at. Ft. Belvior, VA for the Automated Point Positioning Database system school). So, I nod like I already knew that and left the conversation wondering if the Army had a fork marksmanship medal to give recruits who manage to get food from plate to mouth in an accurate manner. Seems they awarded everything else, probably even had an award for sneezing politely.

  24. Green Thumb says:

    These Marines were wrong, no doubt about it. They should have looked at the ID card and proffered an apology.

    But do not wear the stuff on a plane. At a ceremony, yes. A plane, uh, no. And if you look at the jacket, it is all kinds of fucked up. Common sense dictates to take it off. I get people are proud of their service, I do. I am proud of mine. But my ribbons, uniform and medals stay in the closet. Were they belong. I am out and have moved on in life.

    I understand many like to wear them. No issue, that is your prerogative. Especially on Veterans Day. But some of us don’t. And thus we do not have these problems. I wear lapel pins on occasion and am sometimes asked questions, which I back up. And if they do not like the reponse, I have no problem with connecting with their jaw. That speaks volumes about the integrity of the response. Just saying.

    Just an opinion.

  25. mr. sharkman says:

    Here is the link to the 20 minute uncut interview with Mr. Hughes.

    I strongly urge watching it, but it will seriously piss you off.

    http://www.wect.com/clip/12014677/raw-video-vet-attacked-at-airport

  26. Ex-PH2 says:

    All I actually have is one gedunk medal.

    But if I want to go do some PR on a book, I might just make up a costume rack of ribbons that you can’t buy at any surplus store. I live in my own universe, you know, so no one could possibly know anything about the Battle of Navinia or the Gulf of Gliese 113B, except me.

    You see, it would be enormous fun to deflate some of these confrontational and self-important microbes, like these two scalphunters, by showing them my Space Fleet ID, explaining to them about the Battle of the Scrotus Nebula, and then telling them it’s a costume and they’re a pair of dickheads.

    Then I’d make them buy my books and write ‘Thanks, Dickhead!’ on the fly.