The issue of people pretending and or lying about military service and awards has gone all the way to the United States Supreme Court. With a few specific exceptions it has been allowed to continue in the name of “free speech” as long as it is not for personal gain. Other than that, it is pretty much allowed.
However, it is NOT a victim-less crime as this story will attest. There are many reasons people lie and embellish about their military service. No reasons given are good enough justification for this behavior.
Here is the first news report in June of 2015 when those whom he had served with started to speak out.
By Travis J. Tritten for Stripes
A Kansas City military charity has reclaimed a service dog it donated to a veteran after he lied about trying to save a fellow soldier’s life in Afghanistan.
The group Food Industry Serving Heroes took the Boykin Spaniel from Brandon Garrison earlier this month after threatening legal action. A Stars and Stripes investigation in September detailed how Garrison, a former Army specialist hailed as a hero in Kansas, lied for years to Sgt. Christopher Wilson’s mother about being at her son’s side when he died on the battlefield.
“In light of everything we’ve discovered this dog never should have been given to [Garrison],” said Paul Chapa, a founder of the nonprofit group.
Sgt. Christopher Wilson’s mother had no reason to distrust the soldier and his vivid story of her son’s death in Afghanistan.
Spc. Brandon Garrison found her in the dark days afterward and provided the details — the details a mother fears but needs — of Wilson’s last moments after a Taliban attack in Korengal Valley in March 2007.
The futile attempt to save Wilson, the blood, the coldness of imminent death. It was all there in Garrison’s account, and he provided the memories she clung to for years.
“I just needed to know. It is a knife wound so deep you just have to know every aspect or you can’t breathe,” Wilson’s mother, Ilka Halliday said.
Except none of it was true.
Garrison’s war lies are unraveling, eight years later, after soldiers who were with Wilson when he died came forward.