Billy Elvin Shelton; phony soldier

| May 5, 2010

I’m sure you’ve read the book “Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10“, the story of Navy SEAL Marcus Lattrell and his fateful mission in Afghanistan in 2005. You might remember this passage from page 57 of the book;


Well, it adds a nice dimension to the story, but unfortunately, Billy Shelton had been lying to the Luttrell brothers – he’d never been in the Special Forces. According to records, Specialist Five Shelton was a truck driver and a general’s chauffeur at Fort Eustis, Virginia.




DOB: 461102



PMOS: 0064B2O

SMOS: 0064C2O

STOP: 700702

TAFMS: 033










Shelton has begun writing a book about his career, reportedly with a six-figure advance from the publisher. The book was supposed to be released the last week of January, but it seems to have hit a snag. Probably because the publisher found out that Shelton didn’t do three tours of Vietnam as a Special Forces operator

Shelton was in Vietnam from May 68 until Feb 69 according to his records;


As you can see, he was a truck driver while he was stationed in Vietnam, not that there’s anything wrong with that, but it doesn’t give him the right to lie to teenagers. There was a single tour of Vietnam, not the three tours he’s bragged about.

Here are his awards and education;


No Special Operations training, no jump school, not even a CIB.

I wrote this particular phony soldier story months ago, but I’ve sat on it until now because it was not meant to embarrass anyone except Billy Shelton and to prevent his fake story from going any further than it has gone. In the event that anyone else gets the idea of helping Shelton make a buck on his deceit, this is will be on Google to prevent that check from clearing.

They never pretend to be cooks or clerks…or a truck driver.

Category: Phony soldiers

Comments (183)

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  1. 2-17 AirCav says:

    Her, troll. I think I figured out your problem–well, one of them, anyway. You are sometimes failing to click the “SUBMIT COMMENT” button after you finish typing your scrawl in the box. Here’s another helpful hint. Stop typing with your nose.

  2. 2-17 AirCav says:

    Sure thing, Troll. You go first. If it checks out, I’ll leave mine.

  3. 2-17 AirCav says:

    Okay, I think I have this, troll. You’re in a special place with other special people and each evening you have internet access privileges, provided that you have incurred no infractions, such as not taking your meds, during the day. Is that it?

  4. 2-17 AirCav says:

    What happened? Troll? Are you there? Dammit. I was just getting warmed up. Was it something I said?

  5. Troll says:

    im not gonna sit here and talk shit back in fourth either leave your number or not

  6. Troll says:

    im not sitting here all night waiting on you i have things to do…….ill get back on later … number no reply…i dont have the time nor patience to sit here and talk shit back and fourth….so sit here behind the computer and run your mouth or leave a number

  7. 2-17 AirCav says:

    Okay, let me ‘splain somethin’ to you, Lucy. A telephone works two ways: it can send and it can receive. Amazing stuff, I know, but do try to contain yourself. So, take your nose, type your phone number in the box, push the “SUBMIT COMMENT” button and I’ll call you. Come on, it’ll be fun!

  8. 2-17 AirCav says:

    Don’t tell me you don’t know your phone number! Well, you probably know your name so I’ll give you a few minutes to look your number up in the phone book.

  9. 2-17 AirCav says:

    Okay, Troll, times up, as they say. Maybe I was wrong about that name part. Toodles, Trixie.

  10. OWB says:

    @#85 Well, no I’ve never lied before. Never lied after, either. Maybe once during.

  11. Operator Dan says:

    I dare the internet lawyer brigade to man the fuck up and come after Jonn, Spork, TSO, and myself. I fucking dare you.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Fitting using the username “Troll” because I’d be willing to bet that “Troll” is actually Billy. An ip address lookup would do the trick.

  13. dan says:

    at least in east tx, there is someone that has the knowledge to obviously train people to go into the service and make that step to spec ops. i know some of you on here have been there and done that but you all know if you had been preped it wouldve helped you out. he does a good job of that and takes his own free time to do so. i am ashamed of serving america right now because we spend our time messing with this guy and not on the fact that there are tons of things the “lovers” of the military should be worried about.

  14. Hondo says:

    dan: thank you for resurrecting this dead thread. Your doing so gave others a chance to see how much of a lying POS fraud Shelton truly is.

    Now, be a good lad and bugger off. Preferably off a high cliff.

  15. Dianne Shelton says:

    You know what, the biggest lie on here, is every ones phony names, what, you’re not Big enough to say who you are. I have Marcus’s number and Mojos would you like to call them personally and get their feed on it. I have not even told Billy of this web site, that is why he has not responded and I
    don’t intend to. You all think you know so much, YOU do not know the Luttrells, and you only know what John and Hornfischer has said, so believe all of what they say and keep up your little Womans gossip going because that is what you girls thrive on! You don’t want all of the story cuz then you couldn’t sit around and do what you do best! So you guys have a wonderful life, cuz I know it must be perfect, don’t forget to dust off your angel wings, you never know what is in store, what goes round, comes round. Oh, and by the way Marcus gave Billy ( about six mos.ago)a picture (painting) of him and Morgan of their backside, about a 30X36, know why do you think he did that?

  16. Marine_7002 says:

    Q: did Billy Shelton lie about being in Special Forces?

    A: Yes.

    Q: Does anything that he did, while falsely presenting himself as being in Special Forces, excuse him for lying and accepting $35K for a book advance under false pretenses?

    A: No.

    By the way, did he lie about being on a government SWAT team? What branch/department of government?

    And what other aspects of his military/government service has he lied about?

    YOU may not think it matters, but it does. About six months ago I first read Luttrell’s book. Shelton stuck out in my mind because it appeared that Luttrell felt fortunate to have had Shelton as a mentor. Now it comes out that he was acting as a mentor under completely false circumstances.

    Shelton deserves the bad press that he’s getting. It’s useless to try and make excuses for him.

  17. OWB says:

    Could we call that earned media??

  18. Dayum, with friends like I see here, ol’ NOT Special Forces Billy by, don’t need enemies. They are just not willing to let his lies die quietly.

  19. Yat Yas 1833 says:

    Ms. Sheltons and Troll, I’m assuming you can read, maybe a bad assumption on my part, and that you’ve read the copies of “billy boys” records. There is nothing that says he served in Special Forces or did anything other then be a truck driver. For every veteran here, that would be good enough. Where “billy boy” crossed the line was claiming honors he never earned. My “phony name” is a direct reference to my service in the Marine Corps. ‘YAT YAS’ stands for, “You Ain’t Tracked, You Ain’t Shit”. The ‘1833’ is the MOS of an “LVT” (Landing Vehicle, Tracked) crewman. Nothing glamourous, but an MOS that makes the Marine Corps THE Marine Corps. Here is my personal e-mail address,, I DARE you to contact me or have any loser you’re defending contact me so we can meet and discuss this issue.

  20. How many boys have you put in special forces, SEALs, Rangers and Marines? you have a hell of a nerve to sit there and say this saint hasn’t done anything in his life he deserves credit for. What I really don’t like about you small minded people is that you have to pick out the little things in someones life and make horseshit excuses about it not being the real thing. Well I got news for you guys, when it comes down to business its about who got it done. Don’t think for a minute your shit don’t stink, cause a working mans bullshit meter isn’t big enough to accommodate this pile of crap. when hes out there teaching these kids what they need to know when they’re playing dodge bullet, you guys sit comfortably on your ass complaining someone isn’t good enough for you. And if that happens to be the case maybe you should do it yourself then.

  21. teddy996 says:

    @121- fuck off. Lying about your background to get attention from teenage boys and to score book deals isn’t a “little thing”, you ignoramus. It’s fraud.

    If I start training people at a gym while claiming that I was a world champion in boxing, I expect that people will be sore when they find out I’ve never laced any gloves up myself. Same shit here.

    This guy served honorably, for one tour, as a TRUCK DRIVER. Not a trigger puller, not a special forces operator, and not for three tours. He may know how to train people’s fitness level, but to lie to them about what he did in the service, and offer them tips of “what it’s like in the field” is fucking pathetic, an insult to his own service, and an insult to those who actually know what it’s like to do the job he has claimed to do.

    Now go make me a fucking sandwich, Darla, before I have to blacken your other eye.

  22. Anonymous says:

    If the information you are spreading on here is valid, how did you obtain it, being that since it less than 62 years old, the information wouldn’t have been FOIA’d yet. As per this paragraph:

    >Records of individuals who left service less than 62 years ago are non-archival and are maintained under the Federal Records Center program. Federal (non-archival) OMPFs are subject to access restrictions, and only limited information or copies of documents from these records may be released to the general public within the provisions of the law. The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and the Privacy Act provide balance between the right of the public to obtain information from military service records and the right of the former military service member to protect his/her privacy.

    on this page:

    Since he isn’t dead yet, nor has it been 62 years, how did you obtain it? Or is it a product of your own creation?

    Too often I have seen people plant a seed of doubt, and usually in the parts of the field with the deepest fertilizer the seeds will take off and grow. A lot. But it depends on how much manure is sitting in the growing field.

    Without some kind of confirmation that this was actually obtained from the DOD, I would think that someone was growing strawberries in shit again.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Also, doesn’t it strike anyone as odd that his official name on the form is the nickname form of William? I’ve known guys in the Navy we all called PigPen. I shudder to think what his papers must say, if they don’t use the birth certificate form of a person’s name. Don’t even ask about the Bug Eater, and how that must have impacted his future careers.

  24. Redacted1775 says:

    123, It’s obtained through a FOIA, as the title of the second form in the article says “Information Releaseable Under the Freedom of Information Act.” notice it doesn’t contain any PII? I don’t think you understand what you posted.

  25. teddy996 says:

    “…and only limited information or copies of documents from these records may be released to the general public within the provisions of the law.”

    General public gets limited information. That means a FOIA would not give you complete medical and dental records of an individual, but a FOIA request WILL provide duty stations, entry and discharge dates, awards recieved, disciplinary actions, promotions and time in rate. See the sheet that is posted above, with the heading “INFORMATION RELEASEABLE UNDER THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT”? That’s what you get.

    Also, I’ve known people named Billy (not William) and Ray (not Raymond). If his parents chose to name him Billy, then it’s Billy on his official docs.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Teddy – bounce me an email at

    It is a ten minute email address, this exchange is going to be brief. I think I may have found the problem.

  27. Look ted, the only ignorant jackass on here is you and a few others. Just because someone jumps off a bridge you going to join them? you probably should cause it would do the world a favor. Also another thing that strikes me is the fact that you believe everything that’s on the internet. Do you also believe everything you see on TV? You don’t know him, how would you like if I started saying you were one of those Marines pissing all over those peoples corpses? Bet that would get some nice attention for you. Hell for all I know you probably are, seeing how much of an ignoramus you appear to be.

  28. Redacted1775 says:

    The “Information Releasable under the freedom of information act” form is an official document. It wasn’t dreamed up and shat out of someone’s ass for their pure amusement. This community will never, EVER accept someone lying about their service,no matter what the reason. Don’t you understand that?

  29. michael lee says:

    I’ve knowen Billy E. for fourty some odd years, he’s told me of some of the things that had happened to him. he was in black opps and information to thoses things ARE COVERED UP. I have seen him and some of the boys that he HELPED including Marcus and Morgan working out in Billy’s back yard. All I have to say is that ” If the training Billy E. gave these boys helped to save even one life, Billy E. Shelton is a hero in my book”

  30. Hondo says:

    “My records are classified” is one of – if not the – most common claims of someone lying about their service, “michael lee”.

    Military operations are often classified. However, virtually nothing in a military personnel record is ever classified. (On exceptionally rare occasions an evaluation might need to contain classified info and thus be classified.) The fact that a person has a particular decoration or was assigned to a Special Forces unit isn’t ever classified.

    If Shelton had ever served with Special Forces in Vietnam, that fact would be in his military records. It isn’t in his records. Rather, they show he served in Vietnam as a truck drive – the whole year he was there.

    I’m sorry the man lied to you. But if he ever told you – or anyone else – that he was a “Green Beret”, it appears that’s exactly what he did. He may have delivered them supplies, but he never served with them.

  31. oldfatvet says:

    i know it’s been a few monthes since the last post here but i just found this site. what really amazes me is how the rest of the military gets by without this dickwads training. no offense to marcus lattrell but he was 14 when he “trained” with shelton. makes for nice copy in a book, but seriously now,i kinda think the lattrells got through seal training on their own merit,not to mention the thousands of seals and other special forces troops that did so without this no matter what this guy contributed to the lattrells he did it under false pretenses.

  32. C2/2000AF says:

    Wow, just got to reading this, amazing to see how many Shelton defenders were on here. No other phony had as many delusional people show up defending his actions. Not even Billy Boy Blake.

    Diane Shelton is living a lie and knows it. Or could be that Diane is actually Billy and he is hiding behind his wife.

  33. Vietnam Era Vet says:

    Based on training Shelton provided Marcus Lattrell he must have learned a thing or two in theatre. Dunno what he did in Nam. Most of us who served ended up working outside of our MOS.. wherever the army wanted us.. I work with a guy who was a marine auto mechanic in Gulf War. He was Airborne trained (Fort Benning). Dunno what Shelton’s background really was. Folks are too quick to poo poo others for what they did or did not do. Would like to hear the true story from Shelton or those who knew him.. in theater. By the way, I never went to Nam. Army sent me to Germany for 3 years.. then I ETS’d .. But I received same training for my combat MOS as those that ended up in Nam. Just sayin. Would like to know the real story; but don’t. Just glad that Lattrell survived his ordeal and that Billy Shelton helped form him into someone tough enough to become a Navy Seal. Quite an honor.

  34. Just an Old Dog says:

    @134. You simply don’t go from Motor Transport to Green Beret without any type of training noted or a transfer to a Special Forces unit. I’m sure like most the guys in those billets he received unofficial training on crew-served weapons and comm gear and had to stand guard duty. They guy just didn’t hop out of a truck once or twice a week, ruck up and go out with a special forces team on a whim.

  35. fm2176 says:

    Wow, this thread is still going. I’ve met plenty of non-18-series “Special Forces” guys. Oh, wait, those were Group Support, and while some are doubtlessly great people, most of the ones I interacted with at Campbell came across as holier-than-thou. Maybe that’s the deal with Shelton; he supported SF a few times and figured he passed OJT as a Green Beret.

  36. you fckn pos says:

    Once again you know shit. You sit behiind you fkn computer screen and call the shots…who fkn made u god. U know nothing about shit except what u think and hear. If u only know half the shit that really went on…maybe u could give ur 2 cents…but U DON’T NO SHIT. I hv copies of his honors, copies of letters from vn, that u don’t. I witnessed the transiformation in these boys that are now protectimg our country….shame on u!!!!! When they can’t sleep who do they call?when they are blown to fn pieces who is the one at the hops. Shame on u….u want to get on here an bash billy, I can an arrangement with him and all his boys..u can tell him then what a fnk pos u think he is and deal with the aftermath of every single spec forces that stands behind him. So we don’t need ur fn comments. Jst leave ur name, address and phone #, and we can handle this.

  37. you fckn pos says:

    How many of u are actually vn,,,,,was shit not so sealed back then, they didn’t even know I was in ill I provide letters?

  38. ItAllFades says:

    Might I recommend taking an English 101 course?

  39. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Ya see, the Boston bombing got the attention-starved knuckleheads drooling with jealousy. I thought that yesterday was jerkwad homecoming day at TAH but I guess it’s a full weekend event.

  40. StillServing says:

    @137 and 138- Illiterate people should not try to express themselves by writing. You write like someone with an IQ of 52.

  41. As I attempted to translate comments #137 and #138 my translator kept saying that the writer was writing in alcoholic. Didn’t get that at first, but then I could see that it was a mixture of cheap whiskey and Lone Star beer that was doing the talking.

  42. A_Proud_Infidel says:

    Meh, more like Thunderbird, MD 20/20, and a “40”!

  43. OWB says:

    Need more coffee!

    Wow, just wow.

    Simple reality of life. Many of us served as some sort of nothing special as youngsters in the military. Some continued in the military and some returned to civilian life. Either way, many of us went on to establish worthwhile careers which may or may not have related directly to our initial enlistments. It’s called growing up. Some do that more successfully than others.

    So, to those who feel a need to brag about your career, here’s a clue – go do something worth bragging about! Don’t just make up stuff. There is no shame in simply serving honorably.

  44. Ex-PH2 says:

    @137 – Should you really let everyone on the internet know that you smoke dope before breakfast?

    If these wannabe-a-soljer types spent a little time with pen and paper or computer and keyboard and cranked out some copy, they could cook up some real funky novels – all fiction, mind you – and maybe make a little honest money from telling stories. I could never get one single sailor to tell me a sea story if I had a pad of paper and a pen with me. They just clammed up, so some of that stuff, which was hysterically funny, is lost forever. There is a difference between sea stories/campfire tales and real-world stuff, and the majority of us know it.

  45. Hondo says:

    In case anyone’s wondering – the functionally illiterate tool commenting in 137 and 138 above appears to be doing so from a smallish town in East Texas. My guess is that it’s just another youngster with stars in his/her eyes who’s been conned by Shelton and a handful of forged papers.

    And to answer your question, young tool (137, 138): the specific details of particular operations in Vietnam were sometimes classified. However, the number of tours a person did in-country, the awards received, units of assignment, combat badges (CIB, CMB), and the fact of SF qualification never were. Those are all unclassified and are indeed in a Vietnam vet’s military records – regardless of where they served or what they did.

    Shelton is proven liar who served one tour of duty in Vietnam as a truck driver – not 3 tours as SF – and left the military with no personal decorations or combat badges whatsoever. He served honorably in Vietnam, but never did the “hardcore” stuff he claimed.

  46. A Proud Infidel says:

    @145, Ex-PH2, I’m betting he/she/it’s a glue-sniffer, I’ve dealt with potheads that were much more coherent than that!

  47. teddy996 says:

    Wait, guys… that fckn pos guy is serious. He said, and I quote:

    “I can an arrangement with him and all his boys..u can tell him then what a fnk pos u think he is and deal with the aftermath of every single spec forces that stands behind him. So we don’t need ur fn comments. Jst leave ur name, address and phone #, and we can handle this.”

    Now, I’ve been huffing glue since 0500, which puts me in the unique position of understanding this post.
    Allow me to translate the above passage to English:

    “If you like, I can arrange a meeting with Mr. Shelton and the Special Forces Tribunal, which he holds regular court over. You may tell His Honor Shelton then, officially, what you think of the movie “Missing in Action II: The Beginning”, which we all know was based upon His Honor’s service in Viet Nam. Of course, if found wanting, you will have to suffer the consequences of Shelton the Destroyer’s judgement, as handed down by the Special Forces Tribunal. We don’t necessarily need your comments to judge your case; just your name, address, and phone number, so that we may send along any fines or judgements related to the issue.”

    Careful, guys. fckn pos has implied that he sits on the Special Forces Tribunal, and will be in a position to sway your case against you, should you show up to be judged.

    Before giving them your contact information, I would look carefully at the rules to see about replacing Mr. pos’s seat with an un-biased member.

  48. Ex-PH2 says:

    Teddy, you and Hondo made this as much fun as having Snickers for breakfast!

  49. Hondo says:

    teddy996: just remember to stay away from the shoe cleaner while you’re huffing. I hear that stuff makes you go all “Soupy”, as well as inducing a strong desire to put on random uniform parts covered with various ribbons and badges and show up at Fort Benning graduations.

  50. G.Coe says:

    Well I wish I had some a mentor like Billy around. I wouldn’t care if he was SF or not. I believe he regrets saying he was a Green Beret but that doesn’t stop the good he has done. Billy thank yah for training and giving hope to the people that need it most. I aplogize for whom that think your a monster because you lied. You didn’t hurt anyone as far as I could see. Best of wishes to yall that have to put up with some bullshit.