John Patrick Skrlin – Stopped Terrorist Attack in Beirut, Nominated for Bronze Star, “Blown Up” in Greece, Red Flag5
The Weird and Wacky Ways of ‘The Bogey Man’.
NOMY WARSALOT NME
John Patrick Skrlin joined a Beirut group on Facebook using the name ‘Nomy Warsalot Nme’. He claimed that he wanted to find old friends that he served with in Beirut. He made some hostile comments to other posters so was asked about his sincerity since it would be difficult to find old friends if he did not use his real name. To his credit, he deleted the attacks on other posters and identified himself.
So far, so good – no problem.
Then Skrlin posted a story of a terrorist “Bogey”. There were several potential meanings of the term “bogey”, but in this case he meant a small boat. Supposedly this bogey was targeting a ship and Skrlin was called out for his marksmanship skills. He claimed that he stopped the attack by killing a hostile on the boat causing the boat to spin wildly and miss its potential target – the US ship. This allegedly occurred during the day of turnover from BLT 2/6 to BLT 1/8 at the end of May 1983.
This caused quite a few eyebrows to be raised as many Marines in the group were there on this day and do not recall this event. Further, it would be legendary and could not escape the attention of a couple of thousand Marines.
Srklin then reinforced his story by another story about the Commandant of the Marine Corps bringing up the incident of the boat “bogey”, implying Skrlin was singled out and recognized for his actions on that day in Beirut.
Skrlin was removed from the Facebook group and questioned further, not being certain if he was a Beirut Veteran in the first place. His answers were sketchy and elusive.
The incident in Greece was followed up on since it implied he was a victim of a terrorist act while on active duty. Although it is fair to say that getting his “ass blown up w/2 others” could have meant a small arms firefight, mortars, RPGs or other incident, there was not an active theater of combat in Greece. This raised more flags.
Skrlin also claims that he was nominated for a Bronze Star Medal and is still waiting for it to come through.
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A few months later Skrlin joined another Beirut group, this time under his real name. Upon introduction, he hinted at the story about the Bogey. This time around he had more clarity about the ships that he sailed on.
A few minutes later a group member tried to pinpoint what Skrlin meant.
When Skrlin said that he “changed the conversation” he may have meant in regard to the outcome of the incident with the bogey.
Skrlin was provided the story that he posted under ‘Nomy Warsalot Nme’ months ago and asked if he still stood behind it. Skrlin quickly replied “100%”.
SKRLIN IN BEIRUT
Although some doubted that Skrlin was a Beirut veteran he was given the benefit of the doubt until more information could be gathered.
A few Beirut veterans came forward and said they remembered Skrlin from Beirut. The consensus was that he was weird when he was in Beirut and it did not surprise them that he was still weird.
FOIA RESULTS – SELECTED
FOIA RESULTS – COMPLETE
SUMMARY AND DISCUSSION
As mentioned before, Skrlin’s unit members do recall him. He was not hard to miss since he was six foot five inches tall.
Many Beirut Veterans were consulted about the day that BLT 1/8, 24th MAU was to take over and relieve BLT 2/6, 22nd MAU. Nobody recalls the incident in which Skrlin describes the actions where he stopped a terrorist attack by a boat bogey. In fact, most all were shocked to even hear the story as it sounded so odd to them.
SKRLIN IN BEIRUT
Skrlin’s records confirm that he was in Beirut, Lebanon and would have been there on the day that he claimed for the boat bogey incident. His presence was not really in dispute but some did raise questions about it, aided by the fact that he could not remember the ship that he was on.
This case is centered more on the issue of embellishment. He puts this story out to Beirut Veterans – the very men that would be acutely aware of what did or did not happen. In this regard, Skrlin’s stories will be judged on whether they pass the smell test.
As Skrlin’s official records state, he was a Sharpshooter. Expert is the highest, followed by Sharpshooter, and then Marksman. He was also a Radioman.
To believe Skrlin’s story you would have believe that in spite of him not being a Expert rifleman and was a radioman by trade, he was plucked from the ranks for his marksmanship skills. This is to say nothing about the fact that there were snipers present so why would they select him for a critical duty such as he describes?
There was nothing found about a boat bogey being stopped on the day of MAU turnover in late May. There was nothing in newspaper accounts or all of the history history books on the U.S. intervention in Beirut, several of which were written by Marines that were there.
If the boat bogey incident did not happen, then it naturally would follow that the Commandant of the Marine Corps would not have singled out Skrlin for his actions that day.
There was also nothing found on a bombing in Greece, or three Marines wounded in such a bombing. Maybe Skrlin meant something else by his account of “I got mt ass blown up w/2 others” while in Greece. Greece was a liberty stop for the Marines in Beirut, so it is plausible but not likely based on research results.
Skrlin directly implied that he was nominated for a Bronze Star because of his actions and talks like he rates the Purple Heart but does not desire one. If his accounts are embellished, these claims are disingenuous.
Skrlin’s stories go beyond odd. The accounts are not found in the very places one would expect – newspapers, books and Beirut Veterans.
Could these events have taken place and escaped the eye of the public or fellow veterans? Surely someone would have observed these events.
Skrlin is seeking out Beirut Veterans to friend on Facebook and meet up with in person should they live close to him in Florida. It is only fair that they know who and what they are getting involved with since he quickly leads with the boat bogey story. It almost seems as if he wants to rewrite history and insert a prominent role for himself in his version of events.
Although Skrlin’s case is not a case of Stolen Valor, the service and sacrifice that all Beirut Veterans made is their story. Skrlin is a Beirut Veteran, so his stories are their stories. Skrlin embellished events in Beirut as well as his role in those events and it is an extreme disservice to the Marines that he served with.
His insistence to join groups on Social Media related to veterans and Beirut while posting wild embellishments is unacceptable. Those groups are made up of the Marines that Served, their families and the now grown children of those who were lost.
It’s hoped that he will admit his embellishments, stop his disruptive behavior and become an accepted part of the community of Beirut veterans.
PHOTOS and SOCIAL MEDIA
Since Skrlin’s appearance changes often the following booking photos are presented which include one taken in Aug 2015 and late Nov 2015.
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