If you ever heard the old saying ‘Birds of a feather, flock together’ then this guy is the poster child for it. Meet Harry Matthew Janes, and with him in the photo below is fellow phony Alan Merklein ( you can read about Merklein here: http://militaryphony.com/2016/01/15/alan-merklein-us-army-phony-vietnam-combat-wounded-special-forces-ranger-blog-of-shame/ ).
When Alan Merklein was exposed the veteran’s organization he was affiliated with, AMVETS Post 301, had an interesting reaction to events. AMVETS Post 301 circled the wagons and suggested it was an isolated incident and their entire organization should not be judged.
This discussion took place on the This Ain’t Hell blog. The “badmouthing” consisted of criticism for not properly vetting people joining their organization, creating a magnet for veterans faking service claims. In our view, proper vetting of members is a valid point to raise due to the issues surrounding Merklein. It seemed like misdirection to label this criticism as “badmouthing”.
They further suggested this was an isolated incident and even cited the age old cliche of “one bad apple”.
We decided to test Mr. Rhodes assertion and what better way than to take one step to the right and look at the man beside Alan Merklein — enter best friend and fellow AMVET Post 301 member Harry Janes.
Harry Janes is often photographed with himself and Alan Merklein.
In fact, Alan Merklein claims he is Harry Janes best friend.
Like others, Janes has a veteran’s vest adorned with his military accomplishments.
So, a Freedom of Information Act request was initiated for Harry Janes’ record.
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FOIA RESULTS – SELECTED
The above was just the summary page. Janes’ history of assignments and military training further show no training or qualifications in either Airborne or sniper.
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FOIA RESULTS – COMPLETE
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SUMMARY AND DISCUSSION
He has a vest, so yeah, he has to be legit, and everything on the vest is legit. But since this is Military Phony, well let’s just say things on the vest don’t add up with the records. But first let’s tell you what is legit.
He is an actual Vietnam Vet with a CIB (Combat Infantry Badge), a Purple Heart, and a Bronze Star w/V device. These military accomplishments would be enough to earn the respect and admiration of vets everywhere, but it appears that it wasn’t enough for Janes.
For a quick summary, here are the claims Harry Janes has on his cap and vest as well as what is supported by his official military records.
It is a mystery why someone that distinguished himself in combat would be discharged as a PVT (E-1). From the looks of things on his second FOIA, he had some UNSAT performance at one of his last commands. Could this be the reason he was discharged as a PVT? We can only speculate.
So, it does not appear that Alan Merklein was an isolated incident and the first two veterans that were scrutinized at AMVETS Post 301 did not hold up very well. So, the “one bad apple” theory does not seem to hold any water.
Janes has since moved on but that was due to his personal move out of the state of Florida to Rome, Ga. In other words, he left Post 301 of his own free will and it had nothing to do with his service claims. Janes did, however, shut down his Facebook page around the same time that his friend Alan Merklein was exposed.
This begs the highly legitimate question — how many more veterans are embellishing their service? In addition, how well does the screening process at AMVETS work?
AMVETS is open to any branch of service, peacetime or war. Normally the vetting process consists of presenting a DD-214 as proof of service, but unlike the VFW where you have to have served in an overseas conflict to join, AMVETS does not require any combat time overseas.
The most interesting question may have to do with the members themselves — how much confidence can they really have in the person’s stories they are sharing a beer with?
It’s entirely possible that it may not even matter to them. If that is the case, they may want to consider embracing it like the popular sporting goods chain “Bass Pro Shops”, which has a welcome sign at their entrance that says “”Welcome Fishermen, Hunters, and other liars“.
Then, again, there are veterans that take this seriously. Especially ones that have lost comrades in battle.
Harry Janes’ case is relatively mild and quite common as POSers go – a dime a dozen. His case, combined with his friend Alan Merklein, merely underscores the fact that there are many veterans organizations like their that do not put much emphasis on screening members, so they end up with a house of cards, literally.
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PHOTOS and SOCIAL MEDIA
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/harry.janes.71 (deactivated)
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