PDA

View Full Version : News Fake Military Vet (What a POS)


stlchiefs
06-11-2009, 10:58 PM
Fake military veteran hid under 'ocean of lies'

* Story Highlights
* FBI investigating man who posed as military veteran for fraud
* Man said he survived 9/11 Pentagon attack; he was actually at homeless shelter
* Richard Strandlof formed veterans group in Colorado
* Former friend: "He was just parroting my own story"

(CNN) -- Richard Strandlof said he survived the 9/11 attacks on the Pentagon. He said he survived again when a roadside bomb went off in Iraq killing four fellow Marines. He'd point to his head and tell people he had a metal plate, collateral damage from the explosion.

Crowds ate up his story. He canvassed Colorado appearing at the sides of politicians. Inspiring and seemingly authentic, he spoke on behalf of veterans at the state Capitol.

It turns out the whole thing was a lie. He wasn't at the Pentagon. He was never a Marine. He never served his country. He never graduated from the Naval Academy. He claimed his name was Rick Duncan.

He formed a group called the Colorado Veterans Alliance, and the FBI is now investigating whether he embezzled money as a result. VideoWatch Strandlof defend himself

Where was he on 9/11, the day he said he witnessed heroism firsthand?

"I was in San Jose, California, watching it in horror on TV with a few other people," Strandlof told CNN's Anderson Cooper.

He was at a homeless shelter at the time.

Strandlof denies being a pathological liar. He says he suffered from "some severely underdiagnosed mental illness" and that he got caught up in the moment around "people who are passionate and loved what they did."

He told CNN he had put on a "production, which I'm sorry for."

"Hopefully the people that I hurt can in some way gain closure from that, and I myself don't know what I can do short of leaving them alone and not being in their lives, to make that happen," Strandlof said.

He said he's not sure exactly how he's hurt people. "It's not for me to say, and time will tell," he said.

Hal Bidlack, a former Air Force lieutenant colonel, is one of those people. He ran for Congress as a Democrat and had Strandlof appear with him. Bidlack isn't too happy.

"Once one lie fell apart, the whole series of things ... just cascaded into an ocean of lies," he said.

Bidlack was at the Pentagon when it came under attack on September 11, 2001. He now realizes that Strandlof stole portions of his own story.

"Now that we know he's a lying fraud," Bidlack said, "I think he was just parroting my own story back to me."

"There are an awful lot of things that he kept straight to try to fool an awful lot of people for an awful long time."

Doug Sterner has catalogued hundreds of people claiming to be military veterans who never served in the military. He says it's typical for those perpetuating the hoaxes to claim mental illness.

"I don't buy that," Sterner said. "What he was doing was looking for a cause to promote himself. I see this repeatedly. I've had a hundred cases just this year like Rick Strandlof's. ... What they're doing is building a kingdom of self and feeding their own ego."

Sterner has pushed for a federal database listing the names and citations of all decorated military veterans to help put an end to such cases. He said Strandlof has robbed true veterans of their veracity.

"Doing good does not take away from the bad that he did," he said. "Because of Rick Strandlof, the next global war on terrorism veteran that speaks in a school or talks to the media or gets involved in politics is going to be questioned."

Strandlof's story began to unravel about a month ago when he was arrested in Colorado Springs on a minor traffic charge. According to the Denver Post, Strandlof came to authorities' attention first in 1997, when he was sentenced to five years on forgery and bad-check charges.

With the FBI now investigating him for fraud, he told CNN he's innocent. "We did not take money to use on non-veterans projects. I did not enrich myself on this. I did not gain any money from this," he said.

That's not the point, said Sterner. "The one thing he robbed from every veteran that comes out now is credibility."

CNN's Joe Johns contributed to this report.

http://www.cnn.com/2009/CRIME/06/11/veteran.imposter/index.html

What a disgraceful POS and then he claims a mental illness LMAO. String him up!

DaFace
06-11-2009, 11:02 PM
Yeah, that was big news around here when it broke. POS indeed.

stlchiefs
06-11-2009, 11:03 PM
Yeah, that was big news around here when it broke. POS indeed.

I may have missed it, what's his connection to Denver or CO?

Phobia
06-11-2009, 11:06 PM
I don't even use my veteran status to promote myself even though it's legit. It bothers me when business owners tout "veteran owned". Don't know why.

DaFace
06-11-2009, 11:08 PM
I may have missed it, what's his connection to Denver or CO?

Umm...

Fake military veteran hid under 'ocean of lies'

* Story Highlights
* FBI investigating man who posed as military veteran for fraud
* Man said he survived 9/11 Pentagon attack; he was actually at homeless shelter
* Richard Strandlof formed veterans group in Colorado
* Former friend: "He was just parroting my own story"

(CNN) -- Richard Strandlof said he survived the 9/11 attacks on the Pentagon. He said he survived again when a roadside bomb went off in Iraq killing four fellow Marines. He'd point to his head and tell people he had a metal plate, collateral damage from the explosion.

Crowds ate up his story. He canvassed Colorado appearing at the sides of politicians. Inspiring and seemingly authentic, he spoke on behalf of veterans at the state Capitol.

It turns out the whole thing was a lie. He wasn't at the Pentagon. He was never a Marine. He never served his country. He never graduated from the Naval Academy. He claimed his name was Rick Duncan.

He formed a group called the Colorado Veterans Alliance, and the FBI is now investigating whether he embezzled money as a result. VideoWatch Strandlof defend himself

Where was he on 9/11, the day he said he witnessed heroism firsthand?

"I was in San Jose, California, watching it in horror on TV with a few other people," Strandlof told CNN's Anderson Cooper.

He was at a homeless shelter at the time.

Strandlof denies being a pathological liar. He says he suffered from "some severely underdiagnosed mental illness" and that he got caught up in the moment around "people who are passionate and loved what they did."

He told CNN he had put on a "production, which I'm sorry for."

"Hopefully the people that I hurt can in some way gain closure from that, and I myself don't know what I can do short of leaving them alone and not being in their lives, to make that happen," Strandlof said.

He said he's not sure exactly how he's hurt people. "It's not for me to say, and time will tell," he said.

Hal Bidlack, a former Air Force lieutenant colonel, is one of those people. He ran for Congress as a Democrat and had Strandlof appear with him. Bidlack isn't too happy.

"Once one lie fell apart, the whole series of things ... just cascaded into an ocean of lies," he said.

Bidlack was at the Pentagon when it came under attack on September 11, 2001. He now realizes that Strandlof stole portions of his own story.

"Now that we know he's a lying fraud," Bidlack said, "I think he was just parroting my own story back to me."

"There are an awful lot of things that he kept straight to try to fool an awful lot of people for an awful long time."

Doug Sterner has catalogued hundreds of people claiming to be military veterans who never served in the military. He says it's typical for those perpetuating the hoaxes to claim mental illness.

"I don't buy that," Sterner said. "What he was doing was looking for a cause to promote himself. I see this repeatedly. I've had a hundred cases just this year like Rick Strandlof's. ... What they're doing is building a kingdom of self and feeding their own ego."

Sterner has pushed for a federal database listing the names and citations of all decorated military veterans to help put an end to such cases. He said Strandlof has robbed true veterans of their veracity.

"Doing good does not take away from the bad that he did," he said. "Because of Rick Strandlof, the next global war on terrorism veteran that speaks in a school or talks to the media or gets involved in politics is going to be questioned."

Strandlof's story began to unravel about a month ago when he was arrested in Colorado Springs on a minor traffic charge. According to the Denver Post, Strandlof came to authorities' attention first in 1997, when he was sentenced to five years on forgery and bad-check charges.

With the FBI now investigating him for fraud, he told CNN he's innocent. "We did not take money to use on non-veterans projects. I did not enrich myself on this. I did not gain any money from this," he said.

That's not the point, said Sterner. "The one thing he robbed from every veteran that comes out now is credibility."

CNN's Joe Johns contributed to this report.

http://www.cnn.com/2009/CRIME/06/11/veteran.imposter/index.html

What a disgraceful POS and then he claims a mental illness LMAO. String him up!

listopencil
06-11-2009, 11:37 PM
I don't even use my veteran status to promote myself even though it's legit. It bothers me when business owners tout "veteran owned". Don't know why.



I was thinking about stuff like this a while ago. The company I work for has a habit lately of promoting "veteran recognition" for lack of a better term. I got out of active duty in 88 and they were still dragging me up on stage with the other guys, giving us ball caps and coupons for free lunches once or twice a year. It was merely uncomfortable for me until I noticed that they started filming the meetings where these events were staged. That actually pissed me off.

What's the reason for filming us except patting themselves on the shoulder during wartime when they are doing nothing for the guys who currently serve? I went to my boss and, in a very even tone-with as little drama as I could, said that I wouldn't participate anymore. I said that I wouldn't allow my service to be used as corporate propaganda, that it offended me and disrespected those who have served and who are currently serving.

It's not exactly what you are talking about but I think it is somewhere close. Joining the military (for me) is an intensely personal decision. I don't look down on people who didn't do it and I don't automatically think highly of those who did. It was just an obligation I felt I needed to accept as a citizen because I was in a position to do it. To use that for unearned gain in the civilian world is just dishonorable.

crazycoffey
06-12-2009, 04:50 AM
I'm proud of my past and present service, but I know I couldn't stand up for that corporate propaganda either. Good call, it's almost as bad as the POS in the OP. On another note, I don't mind small business owners that promote themselves, as "vet owned". I don't know of a way to confirm it, if I were basing my decision to use that business based on the service claims, but I don't disagree with seeing it in the yellow page ads.....

big nasty kcnut
06-12-2009, 05:05 AM
I know why they use vet owned. There are some people who see that and know that a job going to get done plus they can trust them. Also don't be scared to use your vet status to your advantage you earn it get free stuff. I wish could of joined and be able to serve.
Posted via Mobile Device

Frazod
06-12-2009, 09:27 AM
I don't even use my veteran status to promote myself even though it's legit. It bothers me when business owners tout "veteran owned". Don't know why.

Well, as a veteran, if I have the option between two places and one says veteran-owned and one doesn't, I'll probably walk in the veteran-owned one first. I don't see the problem with it, especially in this economy.

OTOH, I guess if I was some ex-hippy douche, I'd pick the other guy.

Dartgod
06-12-2009, 09:40 AM
I guess the question that really needs to be asked is, did he get any pie?

Deberg_1990
06-12-2009, 09:49 AM
I know why they use vet owned. There are some people who see that and know that a job going to get done plus they can trust them. Also don't be scared to use your vet status to your advantage you earn it get free stuff. I wish could of joined and be able to serve.
Posted via Mobile Device

Its just a marketing gimmick. People trying to get a competitive advantage. I cant really blame them.

Another one i see alot of is "Christian Owned"

Demonpenz
06-12-2009, 10:40 AM
it would be sweeter if it was "Sister Christian owned!"

MOTOR'n!!!!! whats your price for flight!