Sorry if this in the wrong place, please feel free to move it to the correct location if I have made an error. Long story this one so please be with me but if you hate liars who devalue what our servicemen and women do by lying about their time in the forces then you will want to keep reading. Ok, so I have known this bloke David on and off for about 13 years, first as a doorman at my local pub and then later as a neighbour. Right off the bat he seemed like a really decent person, very respectful which I put down to his South African upbringing. In the begining we had a few drinks together whilst his missus was serving behind the bar, we got chatting and he mentioned he had been in the army for a while after moving from Durban. At that point it all sounded very credible, it seems that he was an infantry solider (never mentioned which unit) but said he was given a medical discharge after roughly 15 months because he had broke both his legs. Fair enough, I felt sorry for the bloke and his time since service had been a disaster so it sounded like a genuine hard luck story, I happily bought him a few beers and we had a fewe really good chats. Then over time the story started to change, initially about his length of service but also about the places he had been sent on 'tour'. (please excuse my terminology if it is incorrect, I have never served and so I am not well up on the lingo, don't want to pass myself off as anything but a civilian with very limited military knowledge.) He started expanding the story by saying that he had done a tour of Northern Ireland in the mid 1990's, mentioned that a friend had died there and seemed geniunely cut up talking about it. Hook, line and sinker I fell for it, so much so that I really liked and felt for him, for a few months we became pretty close friends. Then the story was further expanded, now a tour of Bosnia and then a stint on Cyprus was added, eventually Sierra Leone was thrown into the mix. It was dawning on me that this all had a distinct smell of bullshit about it, he had gone from spending 15 months in the Army to suddenly doing a few tours in Northern Ireland and other tours in wartorn areas as mentioned above. Personally I didn't see how that was possible within 15 months, especially given the fact that it was 4 months from the time of his injuries until he was given his medical discharge. At that point I started to distance myself and the free beers stopped. Time moved on and I didn't see him much, then one day I bump into him in town and he is on crutches, I assumed that his legs were giving him problems but then I got the whole story about how he had undergone a couple of spinal operations, suffered nerve damage and was unable to walk without the crutches. Well, here we go again, I fell for it hook, line and sinker. Actually I felt like a twat for doubting this poor bloke who was obviously not in a good way in the first place. So, back to the old routine of having a few beers and catching up. Every single time he mentioned his service record it just got longer and longer, more outrageous and sometimes borderline psycotic, like the time he had been shot by drug dealers in South Africa whilst working for the security services. Yep, the scar was no bulletwound, it was a lower abdominal scar 4 inches long that looked like he had bowel surgery. Still I am no expert on wounds or surgery so I had to let that go but all my old 'bullshit' worries came flooding back so again I distanced myself from him. 3-4 years later I ran into him again at a New Years party, he was still apparently 'disabled' but had no crutches, was blind drunk and more than willing to tell everyone in the pub about everything he had done in the army. Thing is, now it wasn't just the army but the Parachute Regiment with an entire story about how he was up for SAS selection until his subsequent injury and medical discharge. At that point I was getting annoyed so I called him out on it in a nice way, saying that I would love to see him uniform and photos from those days at some point. He was ready for me! Fired right back at me was a line about how his mum in South Africa had died earlier in the year and she had been buried with all his gear including his wings, all his photos had been stolen during a burgalry a few years before and at that point a few people in the pub including his wife backed him up on the death so I felt like a complete cock. Again, time to distance myself from this nonsense, it was really begining to aggravate me as both my grand-father and great grand-father had served in the British Army during the world wars even though they were both proud catholic Irishmen. His crazy talk felt like a slap in the faces of all those servicemen and women who had sacrificed over the years but there was nothing I could do about it, just keep away and warn anyone who believed his bullshit. More years rolled by, occasionally I would bump into him and/or his missus and would spend 10 minutes catching up. The stories became more outlandish, his 'injuries' became more extreme until the point where one day he broke down whilst talking to me and explained that he just could cope with the pain anymore, couldn't sleep and couldn't live without the painkillers which he was obviously taking alot of because he was totally smashed off his face. Well, I felt like a bastard but I just shrugged it off and left him to it. Less than a year later I got a real eye-opener into this fraud of a man. Until about 5 years ago I used to play a fair bit of golf as a social thing even though I was utterly useless at it, my mates felt so sorry for me but were delighted I kept playing that they always got the beers in afterwards, it was a win-win for me, exercise and free ale! Anyway, one midweek afternoon I am getting ready to start a round with the lads, as I am coming back from the carpark I spot Dave running up the fairway on the 18th looking for his ball. So, I decided to keep my head down and see how it played out. Dave finds his ball, plays a lovely shot up onto the green and seems 100% fit, remarkable recovery eh? Well he isn't on his own either, another regular from our local pub is playing a round with him and after asking at the club it seems the two of them have been playing regularly for months, it also seems that Dave is shit hot keen on the driving range. Me being a bit soft in the head I assumed that he had sorted himself out, got a job and was back on track. How wrong I was. Not long after my sister spots him in town, again on his crutches but all dressed in combats with sunglasses during the middle of November. She told me about it, said he was a nutter and that she reckoned he was probably cheating the benefits, apparently he is known locally as '******** Dave' and is a reknowned bullshit artist. It didn't suprise me but it was nice to know that others had figured him out, I had no idea if he was on benefits or not but he was definately playing the disabled card for sympathy down the local pub for a long long time. So, 2011, years have passed since I have had the misfortune of running into Dave as I had moved away, every so often though a mate would mention him and the new bullshit stories he had cooked up. Honestly I didn't care, he was a harmless fool who very few people believed and whilst I didn't like him lying about his time in the forces I couldn't prove anything so I just let it go. Rememberance Day was approaching, I am visiting my old stomping ground and pop into Morrisons to grab a sandwich. Lo and behold, Dave is stood in the entrance on his crutches collecting for Help the Heroes, dressed in Parachute Regiment training kit and doing a roaring trade with his South African accent combined with a tragic story of military life, his 8 dead mates lost in Afghanistan over the years. We spoke, I was nice enough but I wasn't getting sucked in again, infact an hour after I left I was steaming angry that he was wearing gear that I don't think he had earned the right to wear. IT GETS WORSE! One week later in the local paper. Front page, surrounded by kids, Dave at the local primary school talking about Remembrance Day to a bunch of little kids. The article documented in very vague detail about the time he served, that he had been in the Parachute Regiment until his medical discharge. IT GETS WORSE! He tells the story of why he doesn't have a proper uniform for Rememberance Day, basically all his kit and photos were stolen years before (weren't they buried with his mum?) and that he has fallen on such hard times that he has never been able to afford to replace them so he has to get by with his beret and PT kit. IT GETS WORSE! Right at the bottom it gives his email address and asks that if anyone can help him replace the missing stuff he would be really grateful etc etc.. CHEEKY CNUT! Well, from what I just heard an hour ago via an old friend it seems he did the Rememberance Day march with our local British Legion right through the centre of town, a couple of former soliders had to help hold him up part of the way and he was given a round of applause for his efforts raising money for Help the Heroes. That was enough for me, I had to make this post, someone has to stop this before it gets any worse. He may well have served and I applaud him rasing funds but that is the only good thing in this story, the rest of it is just despicable and he needs to be outed. If you can help, investigate, advise or anything else then it would be more than welcome. That said, I haven't posted his personal details, links to the newspaper report or anything that would obviously identify him because I cannot disprove his story no matter how insane the actual details are. Also I feel very sorry for his wife, she knows what is going on but obviously isn't dealing with it, apparently his also has a child now as well so I really don't want to identify this bloke in public unless I can prove he is what I am 99.9% sure he is. Thanks for sticking with it if you read down this far!