More on Assemblyman Randy Voepel, the upside down COMBAT ACTION RIBBON-wearing Clown from California

| April 26, 2018

The Times of San Diego publishes a video in which Randy Voepel claims to have served in Vietnam combat with Korean Tiger Battalions.

From East County Magazine;

In the latest round of claims that Assemblyman Randy Voepel has inflated his military record, audiotapes and transcripts from two California legislative hearings last year reveal Voepel speaking of being in “heavy combat” in Vietnam and serving with the “Tiger Battalion.”

Military records indicate Voepel served in the Navy aboard the U.S.S. Buchanan do not indicate that he was involved in any ground or river combat.

Our search found no unit called Tiger Battalion. Voepel may have been referring to Tiger Force, an Army infantry unit, or possibly the Tiger Division of the South Korean Army, which did serve in Vietnam.

By: MCPO (SW) Terence B. Hoey, USN (Ret.)
April 25, 2018

By way of the figurative “death by 1000 cuts”, here are some nuggets for the public to consume with respect to Voepel.

Although the U.S. Navy failed to list all Voepel’s commands on a purported official biography recently obtained by San Diego area media outlets, we know exactly where Voepel was, what he did and what he was awarded.

He was stationed aboard two ships during his harrowing combat days in Vietnam: USS GURKE (DD-783) and USS BUCHANAN (DDG-14). He was a sea-going radarman during his “time in the jungles of Vietnam.” So, you, the reader, can square that peg!

But, according to Voepel, as he testified in the California Assembly, that, “I served in Vietnam with the (South Korean) Tiger Battalion and when they went into an operational area, the Viet Cong took a vacation. Seriously, all combat in that area would cease.” Go to 3:08 to hear the comedy about his in country action with Korea’s Tiger Battalion:

During the same time he was in combat with the Tiger Battalion (presumably) … he was aboard the USS GURKE (DD-783) and he had quite the time, check out the little quip he left on the USS GURKE (DD-783) website (top of page). I don’t really know what it means, but it is interesting:

Additionally, Voepel describes his time at sea, on the front page of a newsletter … he sounds like a fully qualified unabled bodied seaman to me:

It is very interesting that Voepel does not discuss his time onboard the USS BUCHANAN (DDG-14) like he does so vividly speak about his combat time “in the jungles of Vietnam”. Strange … is it not?

Voepel’s altered DD-214N is making its rounds now in the circle of those who deal in such matters serious matters … 18 USC 498.

“Whoever forges, counterfeits, or falsely alters any certificate of discharge from the military or naval service of the United States, or uses, unlawfully possesses or exhibits any such certificate, knowing the same to be forged, counterfeited, or falsely altered, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.”

We have tee’d up two questions for Voepel’s camp to answer, yet we believe the crickets have taken over this discussion. Those questions are: 1.) Did you know Voepel’s DD-214N was altered before you provided it to the press with the caveat of confidentiality? 2.) Do you now regret providing an altered DD-214N to the press?

Category: Phony soldiers

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  1. News Articles | Randy Voepel Stolen Valor Scandal | Voepel Stolen Valor | September 28, 2018
  1. MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

    Thanks Jonn … please change 18 USC 493 to 498. Mason needs the proper reference to know what exactly what he has gotten himself into!

  2. Wilted Willy says:

    I hope the rotten scumbag goes to prison, just where he belongs, along with a certain brother of mine!

  3. Dapandico says:

    Was Tiger Battalion was mentioned in Lethal Weapon?

  4. AW1Ed says:

    The quip, “She was a good cherry popper.” may refer to USS Gurke being his first ship?

    Only thing I can think of that makes any sense. Not that much of what comes out of his pie hole makes sense in the first place.

    • MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

      Yeah right, and that IS exactly what I thought it meant too … (head in hands)

    • Mayhem says:

      Unless he was inferring that it was a Prison Barge, then it would make total sense to me!

    • Berliner says:

      I think the “She was a good cherry popper” may refer to him being asked by two Thai girls if he wanted to be in a threesome. They told him that it would be like winning the lottery. They were right, they had six matching balls.

    • John Seabee says:

      “Cherry Popper” Yeah that occurred right after he heard the words “Bite the mattress cover Bitch.”

    • rgr769 says:

      I guess ol’ Randy’s idea of “heavy combat” is riding around in the Combat Information Center (CIC) in a destroyer with a cup of coffee and his eyes glued to the radar scope. Or, maybe he is referring to some contentious trysts with “rough trade” in the fan room on man-love Thursdays. Cherries may have been busted there, as well.

  5. Jay says:

    I like the fact that the MCPO isn’t GOING AWAY. Im sure Voepel is hoping he will simmer down and this will blow over, but Master Chief keeps throwing rocks at the hornet’s nest! Well done.

  6. CPT11A says:

    I was a 1LT in the BN 3 shop when I deployed. I never saw combat, but I am proud of what I did.

    I wouldn’t lie about where I was and what I did in a million years. Even if other people believed me, it would be meaningless because I wouldn’t believe myself.

    I don’t get what this putz has against being a radarman, but it’s infinitely better than being a fake member of the Tiger Battalion.

  7. Combat Historian says:

    Yes, The ROK Tiger Division had the habit of inviting the entire ship’s complement of U.S. Navy ships providing NGF support in coastal II Corps to come ashore and join the ROKs in divisional clear-and-search operations in Khanh Hoa Province and to share in the kim chee rations. I heard the ROKs did this on a weekly basis when they were operating in II Corps…(sarc)

    • Perry Gaskill says:

      The ROKs actually did share food in a manner of speaking. They had, for example, a detachment in Nha Trang with a small club that served food, and where GIs were welcome. The kim chee sucked, but the barbeque was excellent.

    • rgr1480 says:

      …“I served in Vietnam with the (South Korean) Tiger Battalion and when they went into an operational area, the Viet Cong took a vacation. Seriously, all combat in that area would cease.”

      Back in 1972 while attending Lincoln Land Community College in Springfield IL, I had a friend/room mate who was a USAF combat controller in RVN. He said the same thing about the VC, but he was tracking enemy movement against the ROK White Horse Division. “We would track Charlie’s movements and when they were in the ROK vicinity, Charlie made a boxing movement to avoid the ROKs.”

      Said friend (S. Phelps, then known as David Groat) earned his taekwondo black belt from the ROKs while in RVN. He later joined the Navy and graduated BUD/s (class 106); commissioned later. Background check verified.

      • MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

        That may be true … but Voepel was not there … he was the USS GURKE with a bowl of cherries or something like that!

        BTW: Tiger and White Horse Divisions are the same thing. The official name is Capital Division.

        • Combat Historian says:

          Quick correction, MCPO. The Capital (Tiger) Division and the 9th (White Horse) Division were actually two different ROK Army divisional outfits. The ROKs also had a Marine brigade (2d Blue Dragon ROKMC Brigade) stationed in I Corps. During most of the war, the ROKs had two infantry divisions and a Marine brigade stationed in the RVN.

          • rgr769 says:

            When I was there ROK troops had defensive bunker outposts at a number of key Highway 1 bridges in II Corps, to secure them from enemy destruction. Passing through them, I was impressed with their construction skills with the sandbags they hammered into the shape of large bricks.

          • MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

            Stand corrected.

  8. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    The Tigger Batallion is legendary!

    Commanding Officer: Lt. Col. Winnie the Pooh

    Executive Officer: Major Eeyore

    Company Commanders: Captains Piglet, Kanga, Roo, and Rabbit

    Presidential Unit Citation: For extraordinary heroism at Hundred Acre Wood, Pooh Corner Province, Republic of Vietnam, 25 April 1972.

  9. A Proud Infidel®™ says:

    GOD, Jesus, Joseph, Mary and Emperor Haile Selassie, Randy Voepel is more full of shit than twenty thousand Christmas Geese when he speaks and nuttier than twenty thousand tons of squirrel shit if he thinks he’s gonna live this down, he done got The Chief’s Mess pissed off at him and they don’t back down.

  10. Dustoff says:

    Since my brother in law did actually serve with the Republic of Korea 맹호사단 “Tiger Division” in Vietnam , I’ll have to contact him and ask if there were any US Navy radar guys with him.

  11. HMCS(FMF) ret says:

    Excellent work, Master Blaster! As for his comment about “heavy combat”, is that something like “heavy cream”?


  12. Green Thumb says:

    This clown should be a Councilman in the City of Loserville.

  13. The Other Whitey says:

    Hopefully somebody worthwhile runs to replace him. Voepel is my state assemblyman, so suffice it to say this whole mess is disappointing.

    Of course, he’s far from the only piece of shit who contaminated the Domed Whorehouse in Sacramento, which is all the more reason why I hope the California subdivision proposal passes.

    • rgr769 says:

      There is someone, a retired SEAL MCPO. Make sure you vote for him in the primary. If he wins the primary, Voepel hits the bricks.

    • MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

      MCPO (SEAL) Larry Wilske, USN (Ret.)

      Former Command Master Chief (CMC) at SEAL Team 3 and CMC at Senior Enlisted Academy (SEA), Naval War College.

      No comparison between the wounded Viet Cong trained Tiger Battalion snake eater upside down CAR wearin’ cherry poppin’ Voepel and MCPO Wilske. None at all!

  14. IDC SARC says:

    Aside from the fact he’s was a blackshoe swabbie on a ship and his record shows no indication of attempting or gainng any type of ground pounding (or Rivarine) skills..

    He says he served in “heavy combat” with a Korean unit that had such an extreme reputation…nobody would act with aggression towards them?

    Seems to me that in combat you have to have at least two factions willing to fight each other. In heavy combat, those two factions have to be dedicated enough to sustain the fight which according to Voepel didn’t happen because the Tiger’s reputation alone cleared the field of battle.


  15. MSGT_RET says:

    I was part of the crew that decommissioned the Buchanan in 1991.

    • MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

      USS BUCHANAN (DDG-14) was a mighty warship, I had the honor of steaming along side her. Too bad Voepel did not believe his service on board DDG-14 was noteworthy or good enough … fellow war-fighters, Sailors and Veterans alike do believe service at sea is honorable.

  16. MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

    When my DAB book is published, I will then pick up my pen and start a draft on the screen play for the future blockbuster release of:

    “Tropic Thunder II” … a movie about a lone and marginal radarman who never stepped foot in the Viet of the Nam, but was wounded in combat doing so anyway …”

    Randy Voepel will play himself and not given a script, he will be given instructions to ad lib and rely only on his remembrances, spontaneous utterances and stupid stuff only a clown would say … here are a few hopefuls for the movie:

    Trained by the Viet Cong.
    Wounded in combat (and has the x-rays to prove it).
    Served on two small boats in the riverine and inter-coastal waters of the Nam … maybe Task Force 117, he wears the unit ball cap ALL THE TIME!
    Proudly wears Small Craft Insignia pin (that he never earned).
    Life was turned upside down with all the combat tours and so was the COMBAT ACTION RIBBON (he wears the CAR in photos on his official websites).
    Had cherry popped while in combat or a ship or the PI or never … (either way that quote hurts just reading it).
    Caught or contracted or had or has or believes he suffers from PTSD from all that he witnessed in combat in the War of the Viet on the Nam.
    Luckily self-diagnosed his PTSD, apparently without any intervention from trained professionals.
    Agent Orange … immune to it.

    Don’t have a movie release date yet, but it will be funny … clowns say stupid stuff!

    • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

      I just can’t wait to read the next installment of this current series!!! Maybe you could give this series the title of “The Goof who Fucked Himself”?

  17. Daisy Cutter says:

    Leaving the BS aside… was I wrong to get a little misty-eyed and have a tingle go down my spine when Voepel talked about the legend of the Tiger Battalion?

  18. Jeff LPH 3, 63-66 says:

    He did his time as a Scope dope on a tin can so why does he have to claim something that he is not. This seems to be the in thing with these phonies and that’s no shit Sherlock.

  19. rgr769 says:

    Randy “Douche Canoe” Voepel is a liar, valor thief, and non-combat veteran who never set foot on the ground in Viet of the Nam. In the clip above, he comes across as mildly retarded. So, he fits in well with his fellow legislators in Sacramento.

  20. Just An Old Dog says:

    Apparently Voepel has been able to get something from the Navy that lists a CAR as one of his awards.
    Any idea how that came about? It’s not from the Archives. I’m thinking he got a hold of some HQ unit and they looked up his assignments and figured he earned it on the Buchanan.

    • MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

      Slow down. There are 4 sets of info out there, listen to his combat claims. We are not talking about a possible legitimate award. We are talking about what started this, his bogus claims. Before the water is muddied again, what report are you working off of?

    • MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

      Because, I have everything and oh … much more.

    • MCPO NYC USN Ret. says:

      That report you might be referring to might be the erroneous biography summary provided by the press (we never saw who requested it and or recievwed it). Produced likely by Millington (micro fiche) … and it had verifiable errors on it (i have a copy of it). We believe Navy confirmed the USS Buchanan was awarded the CAR along with its QULALIFIED crewmembers, however we have not seen the CAR Page 4 entry yet on Voepel. Another agency has taken the hard records out of NA in Saint Looie. Yeah, Voepel’s camp can say what they want … Until the DD-214N is authenticated and we see a Page 4 entry for his awards … and how can we possibly believe anything from the Navy who has provided at least 4 differing versions of Voepel’s service not even near or in the jungles. I am sticking with Voepel says for now, because none of it is true. The truth of the records will work its way out, the lies won’t.

      • John MSI SS Ret says:

        Master Chief, could you send this old stewburner out to randy’s camp to cook their meals. It worked once in 1964 – 556 had dinner and only 1 got the shits, just saying.

      • Just An Old Dog says:

        That’s the report I’m talking about. Apparently he got something from the Navy ( not a DD214 ) that was in letter form that said he rated a CAR.
        That this guy is a wacko and embellisher I will agree with.
        However this video is pretty weak sauce if you are trying to imply he is saying he is claiming he served side by side with the South Koreans.
        As someone just watching it with no other written or video proof I see it as a serviceman who uses the “We served together” a bit losely, and “we fought beside each other” in a way that is too literal.

  21. Old 1SG, US Army (retired) says:

    This guy is an idiot… “back when I was in Da Viet of Da Nam”

    Give me a freaking break…

    On a more serious (and funny note), when I stationed in Seoul in 93-94 a local film production company “recruited” me to play General Westmoreland (or West-Moreland as they spelled it on the jungle fatigues they had me wear) in an episode of a TV documentary series. It was about the Korean units that served in Viet Nam and they mingled real footage with reenacted scenes

    Played in several brief scenes (with lines in English) seriously bad acting on my part… I just wish I could find the video!


  22. francositalianarmy says:

    Randy V. looks like Jack Lemmon, but talks like Jack Nicholson.

    I think this guy is acting out characters he admires and actually believes he is that character. i.e. One Flew Over the Cuck cos Nest