Archie Allen – Fake Marine Buried with Full Military Honors

| February 4, 2020

The folks at Military Phony send us their work on Archie Lee Allen who died last month at the age of 71 years old.

Allen had been on the radar about his claims and was asked about his service about a year ago. He claimed he was a Vietnam-era Marine with the MOS of 0311.

So, in 2018 he was claiming Vietnam-era?  Back in 2017, he was claiming Vietnam War veteran.  Perhaps that was because the nice folks from the Combat Veterans Association were building a ramp for his house?

After Allen was killed in a car crash in Dec 2019, we are told that his funeral arrangements consisted of full military honors –  flag-draped coffin, 21 gun salute, the playing of “Taps”… the whole nine yards.

So, what does NPRC have to say about Archie Lee Allen?   Not much.

How could a funeral with military honors have happened for someone they cannot confirm has even served?

The short answer is a combination of trust and hearsay.

At a time like this, nobody wanted to be the one to question Allen’s military service.

From what we are told, the VFW that did the honors went off of hearsay from the funeral home. The funeral home didn’t have a copy of Allen’s DD-214.

Everything was done off of hearsay.

Allen is buried in the Military section at Oakwood in Canton, Illinois. He was buried without a DD-214 being shown.

Several people warned others that Archie did not rate a military funeral.

Among the skeptical were family members who had been at his side since 1966 and claimed that he never served. Recall that Archie claims to have served from 1966-1971.

This just goes to show that not everything is a colossal waste of time.

This “dog and phony show” has value in that it represents a really good bad example.

Category: Marine Corps, Marine Corps Poser, Marines, Valor Vultures, Viet Nam, Vietnam

Comments (90)

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  1. Slow Joe says:


    A poser killed by a drunk-driving 20 year old illegal immigrant.

  2. Daisy Cutter says:

    Ol’ Archie didn’t just take his lie across the finish line… he bowed and took a victory lap.


  3. marinedad61 says:

    Eternal internet infamy,
    which could have been avoided,
    had someone in his town put a stop to not only the phoniness,
    but the phony funeral arrangements.

    Not good, to leave this trail of stink behind,
    for children, grandchildren, neighbors, and others.


    (Left hand Benny Hill salute).

    • The Stranger says:

      Yeah, except Benny Hill served honorably in WW2 as a mechanic, truck driver, and later, in the Combined Services Entertainment Group. So old Benny has one up on this clown. Actually, several, since Benny was a comedic genius and he also featured scantily clad chicks on his show. Ah, good times, good times!

  4. 5th/77th FA says:

    Keep your underwear and your life clean cause you never know when it’s gonna be too late to change either one. Damn shame that he and 2 others killed by a drunk punk, possibly illegal drunk punk. Good luck to the ambulance chasing lawers getting any wrongful death compensation out of Pedro’s people. If by chance they do the FIRST thing that needs to happen is get his lying carcass out of the Hallowed Ground that real War Heroes are buried in.

    Archie Lee Allen had a good chance to be a Marine Infantryman in Vietnam. The Marines were taking all the could get back then. I have some sympathies for the shame his family has had brought onto them. For his lying ass?…NONE. AT. ALL!

  5. Steve1371 says:

    Looks like old Archie is digging in for the long haul. To bad its for the first time for his 0311 career.

  6. ninja says:

    And then there is this 2017 news article from The Hawkeye, a Burlington, Iowa newspaper (home of Archie Allen).

    You Be The Judge.

    “Vietnam Vet Gets By With A Little Help From His Friends”

    “Vietnam veteran Archie Allen has a lot of friends.”

    “The kind of friends who made sure he was able to return home after a nasty fall left him temporarily unable to walk. They don’t think of themselves as mere friends, though.”

    “To them, Allen is family.”

    “He’s like an adopted dad,” said Kathy Lyon of Mount Pleasant.”

    “Lyon met Allen six months ago, and when she learned he had broken his ankles and couldn’t get into his house without a wheelchair ramp, she put out a plea for help on Facebook.”

    “It didn’t take long for that plea to be answered. Allen has been a biker since the 1960s, and when word of his plight reached the Cedar Rapids-based Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association, the group took a vote and started raising money for the ramp. More than a half-dozen club members rode Saturday to Allen’s home north of Burlington, where they met the man for the first time.”

    “I am one happy person. Otherwise, I couldn’t come home,” Allen said, choking back tears of gratitude.”

    “Like many combat veterans, Allen prefers not to get too detailed about the 27 months he served in Vietnam as part of the Marine Corps. He manged to avoid injury, but that was the singular silver lining.”

    “In simple words, it was hell,” he said.”

    “Allen was born and raised in Canton, Illinois, and moved to Burlington after returning home from the war. He worked at the Iowa Army Ammunition Plant, then at a foundry before settling in for a 32-year career at General Electric.”

    “Allen is far from alone, though. A couple years ago, he got a pet donkey by the name of Willie, who wanders the yard and isn’t afraid to greet strangers. Then there are his multitude of friends, several of whom look upon him as a second father.”

    “Now Allen’s friendship pool includes the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association. The kind of friends who have endured the hell of combat and live for the open road — just like Allen.”

    “I appreciate it brothers,” he said to the biker veterans, once again choking back tears.”

  7. Comm Center Rat says:

    Well at least Archie didn’t pretend to be a 0311 in the Viet of the Nam. He was content to be a Vietnam Era infantry “Sergeant of Marines” during those Vietnam “times.”

    Hopefully, Archie did not infiltrate our sacred, silent brotherhood by presenting himself the highly coveted, though rarely awarded NDSM.

    • Comm Center Rat says:

      I stand corrected – didn’t realize he masqueraded as a “combat marine” in the Viet of the Nam. Need more coffee. The VA must immediately recover the gravestone and US Flag while Archie’s rotting carcass lies in disgrace.

      Please tell me the NDSM brotherhood was not infiltrated by this charlatan!

    • Daisy Cutter says:

      “It was the best of times; It was the worst of times.”

      — Opening paragraph from “The Tale of Two Cities”

  8. OWB says:

    No excuse for this. At all.

  9. Combat Historian says:

    This poser needs to be removed from the military section of the cemetery and buried elsewhere. This type of lie needs to be addressed.

    Reminds me of Larry Lawrence, the wealthy Bill Clinton backer who was made Ambassador to Switzerland by slick willie. When he died in 1996, he was buried at Arlington National Cemetery because he supposedly was a WWII Merchant Marine seaman who had survived being sunk by a German U-Boat. Only thing was Lawrence made up the whole Merchant Marine seaman story and it was a total lie, and he was a college student during the war. Upshot was the controversy got so bad that Lawrence’s family finally requested that Arlington dig up the body for reinterment elsewhere. The Allen family should have the decency to do the same thing…

    • Deb says:

      The family is the one that outed him and want nothing more than him to be removed from the Military section. We have made numerous requests for his removal and are meeting resistance and excuses. We are not going to give up this fight to have him removed.

      • Combat Historian says:

        Deb, God bless you and your family for trying to do the right thing. I wish you and yours success in this effort…

      • A Proud Infidel®™ says:

        Deb, I wish you and said Family nothing less than complete and total success!!!

        • Deb says:

          Thank you, it will be done. I am determined and don’t give up easily. I have had help from Several Veterans and Veterans group that care about their brothers/sisters honor.

  10. Daisy Cutter says:

    I have noticed a theme with some of these guys.

    It is when they travel around from town to town and eventually settle someplace new where nobody knows them. They then embellish their earlier years.

    You can’t do this around town if it is your hometown and you went to high school with half the people in town.

    • marinedad61 says:

      That’s a big reason for the westward movement
      of so many after the Civil War.
      All the AWOLs and deserters from hometown units.
      Out west, they aren’t deserters anymore,
      but “heroes”, in newly found towns
      like Elko, Nevada.

  11. Jay says:

    Meanwhile, my uncle…a LEGIT Viet of the NAM Veteran, retired LDO Captain who passed away in August of 2018 couldn’t GET a full funeral detail because the damn local reserve center was too ‘busy’ that day. So guess who got to strap on the blues on more time and present the flag to my aunt?

    But this FUCKWAD who never wore the uniform a day in his FUCKING LIFE gets a full detail? I don’t normally get angry over posers…..but this shit takes the cake. I hope you spend eternity getting a pineapple shoved up your ass by Satan, Archie. You piece of shit poser. Wonder what his POS ass WAS doing during the late 60s and early 70s? Probably toking and taking it up the ass….fucking POS.

  12. Slow Joe says:

    So, VFW was involved, again.

  13. A Proud Infidel®™️ says:

    Cute little legacy of lies he left behind for his family, now he’ll be eternally remembered as a lying scumbag.

    • Deb says:

      Fortunately he had no children, wife of 40+ years died in 2010. He had nieces/nephews and cousins. He ” became a Veteran after 2010″ we were told. We didn’t really have much to do with him due to his lies but we just thought he was a liar and told big stories. Imagine our surprise when we found out last year he was receiving monetary benefits from Veterans groups. I contacted Veterans group then but he of course told them he was Vietnam Era Vet blah, blah.

  14. ninja says:

    This is interesting.

    He married his FIRST Wife on 8 October 1966 in the Bushnell, Illinois Methodist Church.

    At the time of his marriage, he was 18 years old. She just turned 20 years old.

    Found her 1964 Yearbook picture when she attended Cuba High School in Cuba, Illinois. She graduated from there in 1965.

    However, have yet to find a High School photo of Ole Archie from the Canton High School (Illinois) Yearbooks. He would have graduated in 1966 ( if he graduated).

    Someone mentioned that his parents are buried in the Greenwood Cemetary in Canton, Illinois. His second wife is buried there.

    He is acknowleged as a Veteran at this site:

    Was VFW Post 1984 of Canton, Illinois involved with his Funeral? Wonder how his funeral and burial expenses were paid.

    • Deb says:

      Ninja he only had 1 wife of 40+ years, the woman in the yearbook. He lied and said he was married to a very nice lady named Frances Hesseltine(sp)but upon her death he buried her next to her former husband. This man lied more than he ever told the truth. I reported this man a year ago as a poser but didn’t realize (wasn’t close to him at all he lived in next state)the magnitude of his lies until his death.

  15. Slick Goodlin says:

    “flag-draped coffin, 21 gun salute, the playing of “Taps”… the whole nine yards.”

    Just as a side note:

    One of the customs rendered at a funeral for a veteran is a Rifle Volley, not a 21 Gun Salute. The 2 customs are often confused and misidentified, even among veterans, but are distinctly different traditions with different origins and meanings.

    The 21 Gun Salute is this nation’s highest protocol gun salute and the only individuals it is rendered to are Presidents, heads of state and reigning royalty.

    Specifically, 21 guns (cannons firing blank charges 21 times) are fired in salute only as a formal greeting or farewell to a sovereign or chief of state of a foreign nation, a member of a reigning royal family, and the President, ex-President, and President-elect of the United States.

    Lesser gun salutes are rendered as a formal greeting to military and civilian leaders of this and other nations. The number of guns is based on their protocol rank.

    On the other hand, anyone who is entitled to a military funeral (generally anyone who dies on active duty, honorably discharged veterans and military retirees) are entitled to 3, Rifle Volleys (rifles firing blanks into the air in 3 separate volleys). This is actually not a gun salute, but a funereal custom. They are referred to as Rifle Volleys.

    The 3 volleys come from an old battlefield custom of a bygone era. The two warring sides would cease hostilities to clear their dead from the battlefield, and the sound of 3 volleys firing signaled that the dead had been properly cared for and the side was ready to resume the battle.

  16. I had to send a copy of my DD-214 to the VFW & American Legion. At the time, the VFW were looking for members so they allowed Vets who were involved in OP Power Pack (Dominican Republic) to join even though it wasn’t a declared war.

    • cc senor says:

      I recall guys at Carson in ’66 wearing “combat patches” for Dom Rep so I guess that was justification enough.

    • Martinjmpr says:

      So now they just bolster their numbers by allowing in anybody who CLAIMS to be a veteran.

      And yet they wonder why they can’t attract actual veterans to join their “old man’s drinking club.”

      The short-term gain – in membership numbers, dues paid and often in enthusiastic participation – ultimately causes a long-term loss when the faker is finally “outed” and his fakery further diminishes the image in the public’s mind of what the VFW has become.

      Which in turn causes membership numbers to drop as old members die off and new ones DON’T take their place,

      Which in turn causes them to be less selective when the next crop of RangerAirbonrneMarineSealSniper Space Shuttle Door Gunner applies for membership using the “the dog ate my DD-214” excuse.

      A pathetic vicious cycle that will ultimately cause the organization to wither away.

  17. Skyjumper says:

    (Shakes head)

    At bare minimum, any and all Veteran grave markers should be removed and the American flag most definitely should be returned!

    Here’s a pic from his Facebook page; here’s your replacement sign, Archie…………

    “Here lies Archie….a lying poser”

    Mom said to never say anything bad about the dead, so; “Archie is dead……good!”

  18. HMCS(FMF) ret says:

    I guess the local VFW leadership never heard the term, “Trust, but verify“.

    • Deb Hughes says:

      The family didn’t put him in Military Grave. His VFW branch, the funeral home,motorcycle club and his friends put him in Military Grave despite repeated calls from me stating he was not a Veteran. I am a Niece that reported him and I am trying like hell to get him exhumed but once again meeting with resistance. Called funeral home today and argued with them.

      • Dave Hardin says:

        Hello Deb,

        I would very much like to help you with that issue. Please feel free to call me at (202) 630-8468

        Dave Hardin

        • Deb says:

          Dave I will definitely be giving you a call. I want nothing more than this atrocity to go away. Starting with getting that flag back and getting his ass out of a hero grave.

          • marinedad61 says:

            Good evening, Deb.

            Bravo for your efforts.
            Your best ally for local assistance may be your local newspaper, TV, and radio station(s).
            This is a compelling story,
            sure to gain a great deal of attention.

            Was he a member of a VFW Post,
            or just the recipient of VFW grave services?
            If he was a post member, then the VFW Post needs to be outed, and held accountable, for approving membership to and harboring a phony, and for allowing all of this to occur.

            Good luck.

            • Deb says:

              He was a member of an Iowa VFW post but Commander said that he didn’t keep copies of DD214. I was told they didn’t do that. My other Uncle who served in Vietnam and had Military funeral had his DD214 always available so I was confused. I have been told so many stories by so many people I am not sure what the protocol is anymore, I thought I did but boy this nightmare has been farthest from what I thought I knew. My other Uncle that had his DD214 was buried with Military Honors in 3 days. This poser was killed and put on ice for 2 weeks before they decided they couldn’t prove his service so they would go ahead and give him a Military funeral. What pissed me off the most is not that Archie lied, but that others helped him steal Valor and dishonored the true Veterans.

  19. Cameron Kingsley says:

    Can’t wait to see the fallout from this once everyone starts noticing.

  20. ninja says:

    How many remember this story about John Marcus Alberti, Phony Navy SEAL, who was buried with full Military Honors in a Military Cemetery in Washington State in 2014, but turned out he never served in the US Military?

    Jonn exposed him on TAH. He commented “Dig those old bones up and throw them in the local landfill.”

    “Phony Navy SEAL Buried With Military Honors”

    “Remains of Impostor Navy Seal Removed From Military Cemetery”

    “The remains of an impostor who was laid to rest among our nation’s heroes have been now been removed, according to the American Legion.”

    “Alberti died in April with no next of kin.”

    “Two of his friends then went through his belongings and found what they thought was a certified military discharge paper detailing how Alberti was a decorated Navy Seal who served in Vietnam.”

    “Not only were his friends fooled, but when they took it to the American Legion, officials didn’t notice it was a fake document.”

    “Alberti was given full military honors and his cremated remains were laid to rest next to real veterans last Thursday.”

    “Tahoma National Cemetery Director Tom Yokes learned Alberti was a phony.”

    “We were all just trying to take care of what we thought was a veteran,” said Yokes.”

    “The American Legion, which orchestrated Alberti’s burial to begin with, now has the remains.”

    “It’s in temporary storage for right now,” said Carol Reed, Adjutant of American Legion Post 78. “I don’t know what final disposition will be at this time.”

    “Federal tax dollars paid for Alberti’s ceremony and final resting place, but Yokes says the cost was minimal since he was cremated.”

  21. Skyjumper says:

    Didn’t we have article about a person (a couple of years ago) here on TAH that had passed and had a headstone etched noting he had received a purple heart and some other undeserved awards? If I remember correctly, Jonn had also posted a picture of the headstone along with the story. I’m not too good at google-fu skills, but maybe you could locate the story ninja?

  22. Poetrooper says:

    If you wish to “memorialize” this phony bastard at the Find a Grave website, you can do so at the link Ninja posted:

    In the space to comment on what Archie will be remembered for I remarked that he will be remembered as a phony veteran who betrayed his friends and family. I hope more of you will add your own feelings. This piece of shit needs to be publicly disgraced by genuine veterans and I don’t give a rat’s ass if he is dead or not.

    To post your comment you must have a Facebook or sign-in.

  23. Sapper3307 says:

    Sorry my CVMA brothers always check that paper work when helping somebody. It was my privilege to tell a vet to go pound sand when he wanted our “free money” to put nitrous oxide in his pickup truck.

  24. ninja says:

    This is another sad case where an individual went to his Grave with claims that were Bogus.

    If I remember, he also received Military Honors:

    Jackie McGowan from Kokomo, Indiana.

    Had claimed WWII POW Status with 17 Bronze Stars and 3 Silver Stars.

    Also was the Commander of VFW Post 1152 from 1990-1994.

    In reality, he went AWOL after stealing from his fellow Sailors. He received a Dishonorable Discharge because of that.

    He also tried to file a VA Claim for being a POW.

    Yep, he was a POW. A POW of the US Navy in a Brig.

    Years later, he managed to get his Dishonorable Discharge upgraded to a General Discharge.

    Of course, his Family defended him.

    So sad.

    You can read the rest of the story and see his records on this site:

  25. 26Limabeans says:

    “This “dog and phony show” has value in that it represents a really good bad example”

    Waddaya mean he didn’t serve? I’d say he is now
    serving a very good purpose.

  26. marinedad61 says:

    Stock up on the popcorn.
    This one is going to blow.
    Scroll Up (or Find Text) for new comments by “Deb”.

  27. Deb says:

    Fortunately he had no children, wife of 40+ years died in 2010. He had nieces/nephews and cousins. He ” became a Veteran after 2010″ we were told. We didn’t really have much to do with him due to his lies but we just thought he was a liar and told big stories. Imagine our surprise when we found out last year he was receiving monetary benefits from Veterans groups. I contacted Veterans group then but he of course told them he was Vietnam Era Vet blah, blah.

  28. Martinjmpr says:

    Deb wrote:

    What pissed me off the most is not that Archie lied, but that others helped him steal Valor and dishonored the true Veterans.

    You know, this is a great point and one that needs to be discussed more.

    Many, many of these phonies receive considerable assistance and support for their fakery from “legitimate” veterans organizations like the VFW, AL, and other less formal organizations like the Patriot Guard Riders, etc.

    There is an obvious “moral hazard”/Conflict of interest when same groups that would benefit from someone’s story being true (Ranger Airborne Special Forces Marine Sniper SEAL POW Lone Survivor) are the ones that are charged with verifying the truth of those claims.

    When it comes to organizations that are, themselves, dying due to dwindling membership, their natural “self preservation” instinct makes it difficult (if not impossible) for them to subject these claims to even a moderate degree of scrutiny.

    Most of the time the “damage” is relatively minor: The PAC clerk who lied about being a Ranger (but who still served in Vietnam). But occasionally you get real travesties like this where someone who never wore a uniform for even one day in his life gets treated to benefits that are reserved for those who DID serve.

    I don’t know if there’s a solution to this, but every time something like this happens, I see it as another nail in the coffin of the VFW and AL.

    By my math, most Vietnam vets were born before 1952 which makes them nearly 70 today. The youngest Vietnam vets were born in about 1954 so unless large numbers of Desert Storm/Afghanistan/Iraq veterans start joining up, I expect to see both many VFW and AL posts start to disappear around 2025 or so as their members die off.

    Will something take their place? Anything’s possible I suppose.

  29. Mick says:

    “I don’t know if there’s a solution to this, but every time something like this happens, I see it as another nail in the coffin of the VFW and AL.”


    I’m a Life Member of the VFW, but I haven’t gone anywhere near a VFW Post for years. I simply couldn’t put up with the needless embellishments and the out-of-control blatant poser bullshit any longer. Virtually everyone that I encountered in the VFW found it necessary to regale me with their incredible tales of combat derring-do, and most everyone also claimed to be a high speed, low drag steely-eyed killer of some sort. Ranger, SF, Force Recon, sniper, SEAL, you name it. I never ran into anyone who said that they were an avionicsman in a fleet squadron or a truck driver in a Motor Transport battalion.

    I bailed out of the Marine Corps League (MCL) for the same reasons.

    If the VFW, AL, and MCL don’t get hot on their rampant poser problems and aggressively weed out the phonies in their ranks ASAP, veterans like myself are going to take their support (and money) for those organizations elsewhere, and we won’t be back.

  30. Deb says:

    Mick and Martinjmpr I agree. Several people/ organizations/ lawyer and funeral home received several of my phone calls, prior to his burial, with me telling them I have evidence/proof he did not serve. I called Funeral Home 2 hours prior to burial and told them they better not do this to the Veterans and bury him as such. I called Local newspaper and they wouldn’t return my call. I called Local VFW and was told ” if funeral home calls us up we go, we do what funeral home tells us” . I warned several people, telling them this man has no DD214. VFW Commander dodged my phone calls and I went to VFW in person before I could talk to him, he could no longer avoid me. That is what I am upset about he was a liar but others not only allowed him to commit Stolen Valor but they did it in spite of being told the truth. When I called Funeral home it was said to me and I quote ” are you paying to have him exhumed since that’s what you want”. I was also told “well he was buried with Veterans but I will have to see if that is really the Veterans portion of cemetary”. Are you kidding me he was buried almost under U.S./Pow flag with a plaque that clearly states ” Dedicated to Military. He is buried between two WW II Veterans and with his feet at the head of a 26 y.o. Iraq Vet but ” not sure that’s Military portion. I am so sick of being lied to and put off. This whole process should be a no brainer. DD214 should be mandatory at all Funeral Homes and VFW.