Patrick Porter – Phony POW, Phony Purple Heart, Phony SEAL Trident, Phony Navy Deep Sea Diver

| May 16, 2019

The folks at Military Phony sent us their work on Patrick Porter.  Patrick lives in an assisted living facility in Bisbee, Arizona.  He also lived in Idaho.  He is 72 years old as of May 2019.

In a March 27, 2019 article by the Herald Review, they spoke of Porter being a POW from the Vietnam War, a Beach Jumper, and a Purple Heart recipient.

The U.S. Navy veteran is a Purple Heart recipient who spent one year as a prisoner of war in Vietnam. Porter was a member of the Navy Beach Jumpers, a classified unit that served on the ground during WWII and again in the Vietnam War.

Today, when [REDACTED] chats with Porter about his time in the Navy, he points proudly to a Beach Jumper patch on his jacket. [REDACTED] serves as her friend’s voice by telling his story, while he nods in affirmation.

“Patrick has a fascinating background,” said [REDACTED] , who is a member of the James R. “Bob” Currieo VFW Post 9972 Auxiliary. “He served in the Navy for three years, one of those years as a prisoner of war while he was in Vietnam. Before his stroke, he was an active member of a motorcycle group that honors veterans and their service.”

Porter also has a U.S. Navy SEAL Trident on his jacket along with a U.S. Navy Deep Sea Diver patch and a Purple Heart – Combat Wounded ball cap.

Military Phony spoke with a few SEALs, some of which served in Vietnam with Beach Jumpers.  The SEALs we consulted with said that the Beach Jumpers were a support unit and were not given the SEAL Trident, although they are allowed to join the UDT-SEAL Association as associate members.

Porter was not in the SEAL database, but he does not claim to be a SEAL – he just wears the SEAL Trident.  The US Navy Beach Jumpers Association was contacted about this article.  This was their response.

Porter was not listed in the official Vietnam Veterans official POW database.

The National Personnel Records Center was contacted and sent a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.  Here are the results.

No SEAL Trident, no Deep Sea Diver insignia, no POW, no Purple Heart, no Beach Jumper.

In light of the USNBJA letter saying that Beach Jumper would be on a servicemember’s DD-214, the NPRC was asked to double-check.  They confirmed that there was nothing in Porter’s records about Beach Jumper.

Also, the time he was on a ship that was in Vietnam waters was very short – he was on the USS Hunterdon County (LST-838) from 16 SEPT 1967 to 16 MAR 1968 – exactly six (6) months.  The rest of his assignments appear to be stateside.  So, even if he was a POW in Vietnam, it looks like he was only over there for 6 months.  Porter claimed that he was a POW in Vietnam for one year.  It may be a moot point, because he is not listed as a POW anyway, nor does he have any medals to support such a claim.

What’s interesting about this case is that Porter cannot speak anymore due to a stroke.  So, who will take the fall for all of this?   An overzealous reporter?   The friend that speaks for him?

So when they plan their activities for this coming Memorial Day, let’s hope they don’t run another story about Patrick Porter being a POW and Purple Heart recipient.

Read the entire article here:


Category: Politics

Comments (63)

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  1. Ret_25X says:

    You know, another guy who served honorably, did what he was ordered to do and then either crapped all over his service or allowed others to do so…


  2. Tallywhagger says:

    I knew a retired AF fellow who had had a stroke and could only speak a couple of words, notably whoee and god-dam. However, he could inflect those two words to have a vast array of meanings.

    My southern accent amused him so he would try and express himself with his own version of a southern accent which had me laughing in stitches.

    Thereafter, Stan and I would hold regular conversations just for the fun of it.

  3. 26Limabeans says:

    Well, he can’t lie anymore so there’s that.

  4. Hondo says:

    Bisbee, eh? Figures.

    • SFC D says:

      He’s a Bisbee native, his assisted living facility is in Sierra Vista. Something leached out of the mines in Bisbee and poisoned the water, that’s the only way to explain the place.

      • Hondo says:

        Something leached out of the mines in Bisbee and poisoned the water, that’s the only way to explain the place.

        I always thought of Bisbee as just a little piece of Haight-Ashbury that broke off and drifted southeast when the “scene” there broke up following the “Summer of Love”. (smile)

  5. Daisy Cutter says:

    I anticipate that this entire exposure will cause him to go into relapse.

    They’ll ask him about the whole POW thing and he’ll point to the banana pudding and then to his mouth indicating he wants some.

    I’m sorry, somebody had to say it.

  6. Keepin' It Real says:

    The only reason that Porter wasn’t EOD as well was because he couldn’t fit one more thing on that bling vest of his.

  7. Andy Kravetz says:

    What are beach jumpers?

    • GDContractor says:

      I’m not sure, but I think I saw a group of them on Hermosa Beach in 2004. I remember it like it was yesterday. I studied their technique for hours. It was quite fascinating.

    • I heard of Beach Masters but not Beach Jumpers. I’ll google the name and try and find out what they did.

    • 26Limabeans says:

      Girls volleyball?

    • Daisy Cutter says:

      They served right alongside the Sand Hoppers.

      They were a sister unit.

    • rgr1480 says:

      Headed by Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. who was LTCDR at the time. He got a Silver Star Medal and the Brit Distinguished Service Cross for his work.

      BJs carried on into Korea and RVN.

      …The Beach Jumper name was retired in 1972, and the Beach Jumper mission was assigned to Fleet Composite Operational Readiness Group One (FLTCORGRU 1). In 1986, Fleet Tactical Deception Group Pacific (FLTDECGRUPAC) and Fleet Tactical Deception Group Atlantic (FLTDECGRULANT) were formed, with the mission of “Assisting Commanders in the planning and conduct of tactical military deception operations.”

      Former Beach Jumpers are eligible to join the U.S. Navy Beach Jumpers Association and to be Associate Members of the UDT-SEAL Association. Many Beach Jumpers went to their graves without ever revealing, even to their wives and children, what they had done in the Navy.

  8. Jon Martin says:

    And there was a vest!

    • Morgan Blake says:

      Vest – Check.

      He did have a motorcycle before his stroke.

      No mention of a service dog.

  9. Usafvet509 says:

    Idaho. VFW. Again. *sigh*

    • Hondo says:

      Regrettably, his VFW eligibility is legit. He did serve in-theater during the Vietnam War and receive the VSM.

      • rgr1480 says:

        Hell … I’m eligible and I only served in ROK. Why join if the only thing I engaged was a friendly Korean secretary.

  10. Ex-PH2 says:

    Gee, four years on AD but never made it past E-3. Did the correspondence courses for Yeoman PO3/PO2 but couldn’t pass the tests.

    If he’s had a stroke and can’t speak for himself, then his days are numbered anyway and there’s one Person he has to answer to, isn’t there?

    It’s not that I feel sorry for him. I don’t.

    But I can get a lot of WWII patches online through ebay, but that doesn’t mean I served during WWII, does it?

    • NHSparky says:

      Not sure he was even a striker, because if he was it would/should say YNSN at discharge.

      • Ex-PH2 says:

        I don’t think he qualified for anything, Sparky. But he could take the correspondence courses and then test for something like yeoman. My guess is that he couldn’t even get good scores on that.

      • Peter the Bubblehead says:

        Another possibility is he intended to strike YN, but when the time came he was told the rate was filled and he could not take the test.

        Same thing happened to a friend of mine who transferred from SN aboard a carrier to Sub School in ’95. Spent a year working both his quals and preparations to strike for YN once he reached his boat only to be told when it was time for the 3rd Class test that the rate was full. He wound up becoming an MS3/ss six months later instead.

      • Ex-PH2 says:

        Well, the thing is that in the 1960s, you were tested for schools in boot camp. If you qualified for any “A” school at all and got a seat, you got a striker’s badge just before graduation. That’s in my company group photo.

        He apparently didn’t qualify for anything so he was put in what was available – Messman. My guess is that it was either that or Boatswains Mate, and he took the galley route.

  11. IS2 (SW) says:


  12. HMCS(FMF) ret says:

    Everyone knows that in order to claim Phony POW status, there has to be a Tiger Cage, leeches, field telephone, Russian interrogators and a buddy dying in your arms while you’re escaping as part of your story.

  13. Seals are catching up this week at the TAH starting gate. I’ll take a shot at the two dollar window.

  14. John Seabee says:

    BJ— Not Beach Jumper, but Blow Jobber methinks.

  15. Charlie Six says:

    Not saying this guy was one, but the Beach Jumpers were legit. They were the Navy’s version of a PSYOP unit, with an emphasis on deception operations and some elements of Electronic Warfare mixed in to the mission set.
    They originally operated in support of amphibious operations during WW2 (when the unit was created by the actor Douglas Fairbanks Jr (the actor who was also a USN officer and legit Silver Star recipient among other awards) and ordinarily operated in support of amphibious assaults.
    In Vietnam, Beach Jumper Unit One operated as part of Task Force 116/Game Warden, the same Task Force to which the USS HUNTERDON COUNTY was assigned to support Riverine Forces/Brown Water Navy elements. The Hunterdon County was one of four LSTs specifically configured to service river patrol boats (PBRs) with refueling/rearming and repairs. TF 116 also had a variety of other special elements operating under its C2, to include SEALS, UDT, and EOD.

  16. Stuart Povick says:

    Hey I went ” mess cranking ” where are my f***ing medals ? 🙂

  17. SFC D says:

    The Herald Review and the author of this report have been notified that Mr. Porter is a liar and fraud. I doubt we’ll see a retraction. The redacted “reporter” is

    Fire for effect!

    • Morgan Blake says:

      I sent something as well to her. No response.

      I suspect the entire staff will keep their heads down until the shells stop exploding.

      They also sell reprints of that photo on the web which is a farse, IMHO.

  18. Service in Cold War, Vietnam
    Beach Jumpers were reactivated in 1951, in spite of the objections of those who questioned the worth of a deception unit in more sophisticated times. A Beach Jumper unit was given a chance to prove its worth when an important training exercise was being planned. The Beach Jumpers knew that fleet communications from the force commander to ships at sea were relayed through radio Washington. Pretending to be the force commander, they sent an message, via Radio Washington, ordering every ship’s commanding officer to report to the flagship the next morning to discuss terminating the exercise. The next morning at least half of the commanding officers were aboard the flagship in a state of mounting confusion and anger. There were no more doubts about the value of the Beach Jumper program.

    Through the late-1950s and into the early-1960s as the Cold War evolved into the “counterinsurgency era”, Beach Jumper expertise in the area of manipulative and imitative deception and electronic warfare (EW) was employed in revolutionary new ways, both during scheduled fleet exercises and on actual operations. Additionally, they acquired a new secondary mission: “To plan and execute psychological operations in support of commands to which assigned.”

    Several Beach Jumper teams were active in the Vietnam War, responsible for tactical deception and for employing psychological operations (PSYOPS), which was also their unclassified cover activity. They operated from several naval platforms including the USS Iwo Jima (LPH-2) and USS Tripoli (LPH-10). Their primary mission was to assist and support the operating forces in the conduct of tactical cover and deception. They conducted monitoring, tape preparation, and Soviet signal intelligence SIGINT trawler jamming missions from destroyers. Some of the men became paratroopers, possibly to add credibility to the Beach Jumper cover name.

    USS Cocopa in Vietnamese waters, 1967.
    Other Beach Jumpers operated under the cover name “Yankee Station Special Surveillance Unit”, aboard fleet tugs such as the USS Cocopa (ATF-101). Their mission was to deceive and jam Soviet signal intelligence (SIGINT) and electronics intelligence (ELINT) trawlers that were monitoring U.S. naval operations in the Gulf of Tonkin. This group conducted counter-SIGINT trawler activities which included random jamming with noises that included bagpipe recordings.

    • Slick Goodlin says:

      No disrespect intended, but I’m a former Army E-7 with a lifetime interest military topics and I have never heard the term Beach Jumpers before.

      When it takes several paragraphs to explain them I can see why.

      • Daisy Cutter says:

        From Wikipedia: “Many Beach Jumpers went to their graves without ever revealing, even to their wives and children, what they had done in the Navy.”

        Patrick Porter didn’t have this problem.

        • 11B-Mailclerk says:

          Some people didn’t say what they did do.

          Some people did say what they didn’t do.

          • Martinjmpr says:

            I’m waiting for Porter’s family to imply that his lies are all a part of a sophisticated deception plan to convince the NVA that he was a highly trained intelligence operative when in fact he was an unrated sailor who spent most of the war chipping barnacles off the hull and painting ladders.

            Wheels within wheels, my friend!

  19. 5th/77th FA says:

    Well, just damn! Saw this tool on the MP heads up last night. I have missed the prime chance. I had a stroke (2 TIAs) but can still talk and motorvate. I was Army and spent some time at Bragg. Even delivered ARS photos out to Camp John Wayne School for Wayward Boys and that Alphabet Force back when NOBODY had heard of them. I’ve even took people on snipe hunts. Does that qualify me for Green Sniper Force Beret Long Ranger Para Patrol? Where do I get me a bling vest, preferably with bling already attached? I was also in a Biker Gang, we rode Western Flyer Hogs with an Ace of Spades Card clothes pinned to the spokes. Real badass, I know. Is Claw gonna issue me a puppy or will the interviewing reporter bring that? I got a rag wrapped around a Dew, does that count? Guess I need to set up an in your face page space book account and start hanging out in bars. Anything out of the POSer handbook I missed? Oh, yeah, tats and mirrored shades. Somebody loan me a pack of Sharpies and some silver oxide paint. I want to be totally legit.

    Asshole. Being a stroked out old man is no excuse. Seems like you been rockin your lies for awhile.

  20. SFC D says:

    Patrick Porter’s shit is in the wind in Cochise County. He’s been outed on one the area’s more interesting pages on the Book of Face. He’s well and truly fooked locally.

    Scroll down, you’ll see his smiling face. Visible to all, even non bookfacers.

  21. PTBH says:

    To add another important discussion point to this story – the SEAL that served in Vietnam with Beach Jumpers said that not one single Beach Jumper was taken as a POW.

    I don’t think Porter was either a Beach Jumper or a POW, but I felt the above point needed to me made anyway.

    On another note – did we lose AnotherPat in the transition? What about Master Chief? We’ve got some folks that are MIA. 🙁

  22. streetsweeper says:

    That Ladies Auxiliary Post out there in Arizona (not Idaho) needs to be contacted and turned around on his story as well. In fact, it would behoove themselves to check out anything that sounds too good to be true, because it usually is.

  23. Bill says:

    T.he Sierra Vista Herald rag(head) ain’t known locally for its journalistic veracity. There are a lot of phonies in the SV-Bisbee-Tombstone area.

  24. PTBH says:

    Tim Woods, their managing editor, claims he’s going to get to the bottom of it.

    Tim Woods
    to Manuel, Andrew, me

    Hello sir or madam (it’s not clear, as you declined to put your name behind your email),
    This potential situation was brought to our attention yesterday afternoon. As with any instance in which it is claimed information appearing in one of our stories is incorrect or inaccurate, we will do our due diligence to learn the truth and will proceed accordingly, based upon what we learn. It’s obviously impossible to verify either your claims or Mr. Porter’s in a matter of hours, so your accusations of our fine journalists being cowards and being complicit in helping Mr. Porter “perpetrate that crime” fall on deaf ears.
    That said, we take stolen valor — and claims of stolen valor — very seriously and find verified cases of stolen valor to be morally offensive. As I mentioned, we will do our due diligence on this matter — beyond simply taking the word of a nameless, faceless blogger — and proceed accordingly.
    At this point, we have no reason to trust you any more than Mr. Porter or his friend who spoke for him, particularly given the unwillingness to put a name to your abrupt and, frankly, abrasive email.
    Going forward, I appreciate you keeping contact on this matter between myself, publisher Jennifer Sorenson and my city editor, Andrew Paxton. They are copied on this email. The rest of our staff, including sales, circulation and press personnel, need not be bothered by you.


    “It’s obviously impossible to verify either your claims or Mr. Porter’s in a matter of hours”

    I guess this means he doesn’t trust DPAA when it doesn’t list Porter as a POW.

    This can only mean they have better resources than we do.

    • Hondo says:

      Oh, that bit casting aspersions on a “nameless, faceless blogger” is just rich. The journalistic “profession” simply LOVES anonymous sources when it suits their purposes. And it must kinda hurt when the competition (which is precisely what internet blogging has become for the “old media”) is better – and more knowledgeable and accurate – than your in-house staff.

      Mr. Woods really needs to take a look at the URL that follows – and maybe send it to his staff with instructions to save a copy for future use:

      That is the comprehensive list of ALL US personnel (including civilians) who were ever MIA in SEA and who have been accounted for, as of Friday, 17 May 2019. It includes both POWs (codes EE, PP, and RR) and other deceased personnel whose status is definitively known.

      The list may change in the future – but the only additions will be those SEA MIA whose remains have been recovered and definitively identified after the list’s cutoff date (for this version, 17 May 2019). There won’t be any other POWs added.

      “News flash”, Mr. Woods: if a person’s name isn’t on that list (there were a few female civilians taken prisoner in SEA), he/she is NOT considered a Vietnam War POW by DoD. Period.

  25. 3/10/MED/b says:

    I do not like to be wrong, whether in a simple math equation, song lyrics, or historical facts.
    If I am wrong, I welcome the correction(s), whether it comes from one of my many higher educated nieces or nephews, the elders at TAH, or my own research if I have my own doubts.

    “The rest…need not be bothered by you…”

    Apparently, they are not so “morally” offended.

    If a “nameless, faceless blogger” questioned me, depending on the situation, I may or may not respond.

    But I would be damned sure I was accurate.

    I’m a short leg, so it’s a long jump off the soap box.

    3/10/MED/b out

    • PTBH says:

      From what I understand, that entire news office was not responding to anybody, hence the followup email accusing them of hiding behind their desks and encouraging them to have the moral courage to stand up and make things right.

      A simple “Thank you, we’re looking into it.” would have gone a long way. The followup email included everyone in their office – about 30 people.

      I’m like you – focus on the message, not the messenger. If there is something to what they are saying, then make an effort to get past how they are saying it.

      • SFC D says:

        “30 people” covers everybody from the editor, reporters, print crew, janitor, and delivery drivers.

  26. 3/10/MED/b says:

    Mr. Woods is so concerned with “the rest of our staff…”

    What a stand-up guy.

    Everybody wants to be the “stand-up guy” until it’s time to do stand up shit, like back up your facts, or admit you fornicated Fido.

    Enough nonsense from me.

    Peace to all.
    (except, well, they know who they are…)

  27. Thunderstixx says:

    Another last class “fuckstick” at the annals of TAH and whatever we are using for them now…

  28. OWB says:

    Sad. But at least this clown will no longer be lying about his service therefore only those who continue to tell the tall tales are solely responsible for those lies.

    Sure, “look into” it, Mr. editor guy. Perhaps you should consider fact checking PRIOR to publication. Yeah, details, details, details. Or maybe you just don’t care.

  29. PTBH says:

    Response for the ames R. “Bob” Currieo VFW Post 9972 Auxiliary and Auxillary member Carolyn Uhlig featured in the story:

    Auxillary Response

    • rgr769 says:

      My reply to them is that it is them (the VFW chapter) is that they put out the phony story that he was a POW for a year in the Viet of the Nam. They just don’t want to admit they put it out false info to the paper, which also failed to look at the POW database that anyone can check.