Mark Kaufman; phony story backfires

| March 14, 2015

Mark Kaufman

Steve sends us a link to the story about Mark Kaufman, a veteran who apparently suffers from MS and he needed a new service dog as the one he had was 13 years old. So he starts telling people how he was a combat veteran;

He is hoping to prove that his illnesses are linked to the time he spent in the first Gulf War. He also served in combat zones in the Falklands and Grenada.

Kauffman left the Army five months and eight days before his 20th anniversary, he will tell you, and he blames that on the Clinton administration’s downsizing. While he served the remainder of his time with an Army Reserve unit, that move left him unable to collect his pension until he is 62.

Kauffman, 50, said doctors have told him he won’t live that long.

That has left him feeling 100 percent behind the military but, he said, “bitter at those idiots in Washington.”

Yeah, all of you Falklands veterans raise your hands. Well, the author of the first article did some digging;

This week, I was able to view Kauffman’s Veterans Administration records, as well as a couple of yearbooks he produced. What I saw was a man who was in the Army Reserve in early 1982, then went on Army active duty, eventually leaving with the rank E4. He served in the Army Reserve until October 2003, when he was honorably discharged with the rank of sergeant.

The records said he was a decorated sharpshooter and had earned a good conduct medal and an overseas service medal.

I saw orders he received while stationed in Germany, sending him to participate in exercises in Norway and Turkey. I saw his certificate of achievement from the 7th Engineer Brigade for service in Heidelberg.

So, when folks found out he was lying, they shut down the donation site for him and returned all of the money, about 8 grand, to the donors. Ya know what? If he’d been truthful about his service in the beginning, people probably would have given that money anyway – there’s just that much goodwill about veterans. You don’t have to be a hero, you just have to be willing to step up and do the job that 99% of the country won’t. But Americans don’t like liars.

The young organizer, who lives in the River Plaza Apartments where Kauffman also lives, said he talked to police and was reassured he wouldn’t face any consequences if the page was taken down and the money returned.

So the young man, who had called Kauffman “my hero,” shut down the page and is working to return the money.

All of this upset Kauffman to the point that his friends and neighbors feared for his health. His laundry list of illnesses leaves him vulnerable to strokes, heart attacks and more.

Dude, don’t lie. Be proud of what you’ve actually done instead of making up bullshit stories that make you look like a flimflam man. This is too stupid for me to even put it on our Stolen Valor page.

UPDATED; I changed my mind after someone dropped off a link to his Facebook page;

Mark Kaufman Facebook

Category: Dumbass Bullshit

Comments (50)

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  1. Hondo says:

    All of this upset Kauffman to the point that his friends and neighbors feared for his health. His laundry list of illnesses leaves him vulnerable to strokes, heart attacks and more.

    Call me cold-hearted . . . but I don’t freaking care. IMO he’s only upset because his scheme didn’t work.

    He tried to profit from the goodwill of others through lying about his service. If getting caught lying “upsets” him and causes him health issues, tough. Sow the wind, reap the whirlwind.

    • AW1 Tim says:

      I have to concur. I went back and forth about this, but in the end, he has brought this upon himself.

      The big problem I have with these scams is that it makes people distrustful of actual veterans who need help. It makes them dig deeper and hold their funds closer, and that’s not a bad thing. Folks OUGHT to take a little time to check these things out.

      Plus, that $8 grand could have been used for someone who truly needs it.

  2. A Proud Infidel®™ says:

    If only he had been honest, HE FUCKED HIMSELF by lying about his service, thus my sympathy meter registers ZERO on him.

  3. LIRight says:

    Quoting Jonn’s last line, “This is too stupid for me to even put it on our Stolen Valor page.”

    Absolutely correct! Perhaps you can create a page for, “assholes!” Cause this guy fits the mould.

  4. CLAW131 says:

    Maybe this post should go onto the Stolen Valor page.

    The real story is contained in the comments to the second article.

    The comments say that he claimed on his Facebook bio that he was a retired Master Sergeant E-8 Special Forces Medic. There is a lot of bogus stuff listed in the Facebook bio.

    So,yes, I think that qualifies him as a Stolen Valor LSoS.

    • Hondo says:

      Agree, Claw. Based on the stuff in his purported Facebook bio quoted in those comments, the guy appears to be “rockin’ the lie” bigtime on Facebook about his military career.

    • Steve says:

      With the newest revised Federal Stolen Valor statutes, this man may very well have crossed the line, and may need a look by the proper authorities.

  5. Ex-PH2 says:

    Well, this is something I don’t get. He could most likely have gotten what he needed without coming up with a phony story to get it.

    I don’t know if organizations that train service dogs require payment, but there is a cost to train and maintain them. And as far as that goes, he could have learned how to train the dog himself. This is ridiculous.

    Where does this ‘gimme gimmme gimme’ mentality come from? What’s wrong with earning what you want or need?

    • Big Steve says:

      Precisely. This mentality just totally escapes me. Guess some of us are just fiercely independent, and don’t want or need help unless we are really, really in a bad way.

  6. Green Thumb says:


  7. Marine_7002 says:

    Give him a TS slip and send him to the chaplain.


  8. Thunderstixx says:

    Another perfectly honorable service record gets tossed into the trash because of his own ego…
    If you want to know why they do this, simply look at one thing, their ego, it instills a sense of arrogance and entitlement to them…

  9. Big Steve says:

    The Falklands!? Has any American phony ever tried that one before?
    Even if he had been a combat vet, I highly doubt his MS would have any correlation. Sounds like a Nam vet I know (USAF) who was diagnosed with Parkinsons a few years ago, and his first instinct was to blame it on Agent Orange (AO) from Nam and cash in with the VA. Given what he did in the AF over there, I don’t believe he was ever very close to AO.

    I know 2 other Nam vets getting pretty nice monthly checks from the VA, and I know enough about their service and their injuries/illnesses to think all of them are taking advantage of the system.

    • C.P. Jr. says:

      If Mark Kaufman had any problems due to combat in the Falklands he should contact the British or Argentina government since all actual military combatants were from either Great Britain and Argentina. Looks like Nancy Eshelman & Mr. Kaufman’s fan club need a history lesson since THE FALKLAND WAR WAS A CONFLICT BETWEEN GREAT BRITAIN AND ARGENTINA ONLY! THE UNITED STATES NOR ITS MILITARY HAD ABSOLUTELY NO COMBAT ROLE IN THE ENTIRE CONFLICT! (Although they did supply support from afar ie. sidewinder missiles, AWAC/satellite surveyance, etc.)

  10. Mustang1LT says:

    Fuck this guy twice with a pineapple. I used to work with a guy who was a Marine aviator (Cobras) who was medically retired due to MS. The subject of this article is an A#1 shitbag.

  11. Club Manager says:

    Echo Mustang1LT. But no NDSM in his records? While they just don’t grown on trees for all to get, if they overlooked that they must have also overlooked his other claims.

  12. Slick Goodlin says:

    I see this reporter was impressed that Kauffman was a, “decorated sharpshooter”.

    The public should know that Army shooting awards during this period could tend to be inflated and a bit misleading to the uninitiated.

    Marksman, Sharpshooter, Expert…they all sound impressive.

    Army rifle shooting qualifications were scored with less than Olympic precision.

    You were scored by a fellow soldier who sat behind you on a wooden bench with a scorecard and a pencil stub. Your score depended on whether you hit plastic silhouette targets at various ranges. They had a sensor mechanism that would make the target go down if it were hit.

    However, whether and why the target was scored as going down because you actually hit it could be a matter of interpretation.

    The target could go down because:
    You actually hit it, it malfunctioned, it was time for it to go down, the scorer thought it went down, the scorer was your buddy and put whatever he wanted on the scorecard.

  13. Steve says:

    Mark Lincoln Kauffman’s About-Details about Mark page on Facebook:

    “Divorced and looking, Retired military, but won’t see retirement pension at age 62, given 3-31/2 years to live, currently live with my 103 year old grandmother. Primarily use a rolling walker as a wheel chair to get around out side the home, at home I use a power wheelchair to get around. still able to drive trying to sell my vehicles to put money down to buy a handicapped equipped vehicle with ramps for my powerchair and Hand controls. Diagnosed with PRMS on 31JAN12, CIDP on 11May12 and ALS precursors in October 2012. Other conditions Diagnosed with rapid cycling mixed mania bipolar disorder, HTN, NIDDM and GERD. I Have upper and lower dentures, need to wear diapers, Currently Recieve treatment at PSUMed Center in Hershey Pa. Have only one child, a 10 year old Bouvier des Flandres dog named Ch. Deewal Great Escape (Randy for Short)Used to live in my RV fulltime, have most recently studied Herbal and Ayurvedic Medicine, Practiced yoga and took a basic yoga Teacher Training course, Meditate daily, in the past competed in Triathalons, United States Masters Swimming League. While in the military held mos’s of 74B, 12B, 91A, 91B20, 54B20, 91C20-30, 18D30-50; served with the 78th engr Bn., 7th Special Forces Group, Trained as a Demo specialist, under water demo specialist, combat engineer, medic , Paramedic, Practical Nurse, Registered Nurse, sniper, NBC Specialist, Jungle expert, Master weapons instructor, Held numerous decorations and awards, trained and completed Scuba school, Air assault school, airborne school Ranger School, Special forces Training, Attended West Point Prep School(USMAPS), combat Vet. While in Germany was attached to AMF (Allied Mobile Force) command, Retired with 20 years 3 months and 5 days of military service as an E-8 Master Sergeant MSG.”

    Favorite Quotes.

    SNAFU, Namaste’, If at first you don’t succeed try, try again and if then you don’t succeed f*** it!

    Look yourselves:

    • Jonn Lilyea says:

      You’re right, I added him to the SV page – he earned it.

      • OldCorpsTanker72 says:

        I can’t believe you people are giving this man a hard time. Do you realize how few of our Falklands snipers made it back?

        /sarc is self-evident, right?/

    • Big Steve says:

      Damn, this guy really is the total package. Not only did virtually *everything* during his “20 years” in the army, but also did some SEAL type stuff (scuba and UDT), as well as being a master swimmer, triathlete, etc.

      A total overachiever, and a God amongst us mere men. I am in awe of you, Mark.

    • jonp says:

      With all that training it’s a wonder he had time to deploy but then again is is quite the stud

  14. StillServing says:

    In this article –
    Kauffman says that his records were destroyed in a fire and he standing behind everything he said. What a lying piece of shit!

    • Mustang1LT says:

      A fire? This dude is a prime candidate for my self help program, summed up with the following motto:
      “Build a man a fire and he’s warm for the night. Light a man on fire and he’s warm for the rest of his life.”

  15. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Yeah, in light of everything else he claims, I want to see a notarized diagnosis of the MS. (It’s probably Ms.)

    • nbcguy54ACTUAL says:

      He probably read some stuff about Bob Wolz and his fight to get exposure to sarin during DS recognized as a possible MS symptom causer by the VA and said “Yep – there’s my ticket”.

  16. RM3(SS) says:

    Here’s what stands out to me from his “discription”.
    “Divorced and looking….Diagnosed with rapid cycling mixed mania bipolar disorder, HTN, NIDDM and GERD. I Have upper and lower dentures, need to wear diapers.”

    Now don’t crowd ladies, he’s quite the catch!

  17. 3E9 says:

    Reserve and Guard retirement pay starts at 60 not 62. DIPSHIT

    • Hondo says:

      Or earlier, if you have qualifying contingency service after a specified day in late Jan 2008 (it wasn’t made retroactive, unfortunately).

      However, eligibility to receive normal Social Security does start as early as age 62. I’m guessing that’s what he was remembering, was trying to mislead the listener into thinking he was talking about some future military reserve-component pension – and screwed it up it.

      • 3E9 says:

        True. I managed to get one last AD tour in 2012-2103 that cut six months off my check time. All of my other AD was either prior to 08 or less than 90 consecutive days. I’m sure he is “mis-remembering”; I heard on the NBC news the other week that condition is going around. Espically in the poser community.

        • Hondo says:

          If I’m doing the calculations correctly, I have 15 mo that will count (missed having 18 mo by less than a month since the 2008 DAA wasn’t signed until late Jan 2008).

          Had the law made that retroactive back to 9/11, I’d have 4 years. With my luck, they’ll do that – right after I’m eligible to start receiving reserve retired pay. (smile)

    • Jordan Rott says:

      Well, you figure your time to retire in the guard or reserve goes down 2 years for every deployment so this guy could’ve retired when he was 19 with all the bullshit he claims to have done. 3rd week of Basic they said he could retire.

      • Hondo says:

        No. Retirement pay for reservists is authorized 90 days earlier for each 90 days a reservist spends on active duty in support of a designated contingency, provided the service (1) occurs in the same fiscal year and (2) occurs after a particular date in late January 2008 (I believe the “magic date” is 28 January 2008). A further limitation is that Reserve retired pay cannot be paid earlier than 50 years of age unless the individual retires under active-duty rules (20 years of active service).

        This article gives a reasonable overview, though it’s not 100% complete.

        A better explanation that does not include the 2013 extensions referred to in the above article may be found at:

        • Jordan Rott says:

          Thanks for the link. With my Active Duty time and the rest being in the guard , whenever I retire maybe I’ll get enough every month when I’m 50 something to be able to pay for a collect call.

  18. O-4E says:

    You know who really gets screwed in all of this?

    Randy. This jackwads current 14 year old service dog. Who has to keep Soldiering on for this turd.

  19. Steve says:

    Here is a youtube video from 19 Feb 2015, done by the same reporter at PennLive News.

    Notice that in the video, he is wearing the subdued rank of MSG/E-8, which he NEVER earned.
    Also, I believe he was never over the rank of E-4, if at all. He says the reason he was an E-5 once, was when he was a west point prep school cadet, and they gave/paid him E-5 pay while in school. I know for a fact he was never in combat at all, never in Afghan, or Grenada, or any other combat area, ever.

    This guy is a 100% match for a stolen valor prosecution. Yes, sad about his dog, true that, but the guy is fake.

  20. jonp says:

    Wow, that guy was a high rolling stud. Scuba, Underwater Demo, Ranger, SF, Paramedic, Combat Engineer, Sniper..

    He could have designed and built the Brooklyn Bridge, HALO’d out over it into the water, scuba’d up to it and planted charges to blow it up then sneaked onto land to provide 1st aid if anyone was caught in the blast. I’m impressed.

  21. Karl Henkels says:

    Well I know he was an E-4. I served with him in West Germany in the mid 80’s. As for everything else I would like to believe his claims. But somethings just don’t add up. I did put him on our company FB page and donate money trying to help out a disabled vet. I had no idea the rest of his claims. All I hope is that he gets help. As for doing this again for someone I served with, yes I would do it again. I would like to think that anyone I served with would be telling the truth and not scamming a fellow vet. Talbot said that I am also jaded enough to know the person you knowbtoday is not the same person you kew 30

  22. Karl Henkels says:

    That said I am jaded enough to know the person you meet today is not the same person you were out drinking with 30 years ago.

    Admin can you please add this to the bottom of my last post?? I come out sounding like I fell asleep at the keyboard. Thanks.

  23. Combat Historian says:

    …”While in the military held mos’s of 74B, 12B, 91A, 91B20, 54B20, 91C20-30, 18D30-50; served with the 78th engr Bn., 7th Special Forces Group, Trained as a Demo specialist, under water demo specialist, combat engineer, medic , Paramedic, Practical Nurse, Registered Nurse, sniper, NBC Specialist, Jungle expert, Master weapons instructor.”…

    Sly Stallone in “The Demolition Man” doesn’t hold a candle to this dude, for this guy is THE DEMOLITION NURSE; he blows people up and nurses them back to health so he can blow them up again…

  24. gitarcarver says:

    The comments and Kaufman’s response on the cited article are very interesting.

    ( )

    On of the more interesting posts is from someone claiming to represent the Keystone Iron Warriors – the original group that tried to get Kaufman a new dog:

    Ms. Eshelman,

    I am one of the founders of Keystone Iron Warriors. I am requesting that you remove the article on Mark Kauffman. No one in our organization has called Mr. Kauffman a fraud, we simply found too many discrepancies in the paperwork or lack thereof paperwork Mr. Kauffman provided. It’s his length of service that he stated in the original article that is in question. Also, when our organization provides a service k9 the recipient does not get to choose the dog, dog breed or where the dog comes from. Mr. Kauffman demanded the same breed of dog, to which I contacted a locate breeder, the cost of the dog would have been $1600, this was not acceptable to Mr. Kauffman, he just wanted the money and said he would purchase the dog from a breeder he used prior which would have cost more and that he would train the dog himself. This put up red flags for our board as well as the questions to his length of service, etc. we simply denied him, which we have the right to do as a foundation. Mr. Hummel stated to you that he did not want to be in the article, we wanted no further contact with Mr. Kauffman, however Mr. Kauffman harassed Kyle Hummel by phone until his phone number had to be blocked. It was Mr. Landry’s choice to take down the go fund me account and to post why. You need to understand, when Iron Warriors helps a veteran,The veteran does not dictate and make demands on our organization, we have our policies and Mark Kauffman did not want to follow them.

    Please remove your article or remove the name of our organization and Kyle Hummel or your editor will be contacted by our attorney. No one called Mark Kauffman a fraud therefore your article is a lie and you are defaming the character of the foundation as well as Kyle


    Vicki Hummel
    Keystone Iron Warriors
    Intake Specialist

    • Steve says:

      Kinda tells you a lot about Mr. Kauffman, doesn’t it? “Mr. Kauffman harassed Kyle Hummel by phone until his phone number had to be blocked”.

      In the original description of the gofundme website in FEB, it clearly stated erroneous Rank/Qualifications, and other information, to include combat service. That in itself is grounds for a Stolen Valor investigation, based on the amended 2013 Stolen Valor Act:

      “The Stolen Valor Act of 2013 amends the federal criminal code to rewrite provisions relating to fraudulent claims about military service to subject to a fine, imprisonment for not more than one year, or both an individual who, with intent to obtain money, property, or other tangible benefit, fraudulently holds himself or herself out to be a recipient of…”

  25. Steve says:

    A new article posted today on this individual.

    In this newer article, it quotes Mark Kauffman saying he “never served in active combat”. This statement is a 180 degree turn around from the first article written, that stated he was in combat in the first gulf war, the Falklands, and Grenada.