View Full Version : Media fooled over helmet escape

04-15-03, 05:21 PM
Media fooled over helmet escape

Tuesday, April 15, 2003 Posted: 12:13 PM EDT (1613 GMT)

LONDON, England (CNN) -- A British serviceman fooled the media when he was portrayed as having had a miracle escape after his helmet was hit by four gunshots, it has been revealed.

Commando Eric Walderman, 28, was nowhere near his helmet when it was shot by members of his own unit, serving in Iraq, said the British tabloid, The Sun.

The newspaper, which had carried the story saying Walderman had been targeted by Iraqi soldiers, unashamedly revealed the hoax on its front page Tuesday under the headline "Mr Lucky was not so plucky."

The helmet had been placed on Walderman's pack before the Marines began firing at a nearby unexploded anti-tank weapon.

Newspapers around the world ran with the picture and story of the "miracle" escape.

The incident happened ahead of the battle for Umm Qasr in the south of Iraq in the early stages of the war.

Walderman did not give an interview but he did not stop reporters assuming he had been wearing the Kevlar helmet when the bullets ripped into it.

The trick was only discovered when The Sun phoned for an update. A senior officer was quoted as saying: "I'm afraid the pressmen have been had.

"All commandos have a great sense of humor. Boys will be boys. It will go down in history as a great wheeze."




Walderman's shredded helmet: "A great wheeze"

04-15-03, 09:17 PM
A two-part story.

Part one. FLC, Red Beach, Danang, 1966-67.

A young Marine getting ready to rotate back to the world wanted to take his pet dog with him. (A typical mutt, heinz dog, 57 varieties, about the size of a scotch terrier.)

After several Hell No's, he wrote to his Congressmen. The dog was a war hero, saved his life on patrol by dragging the Marine to safety after he was wounded.

The story hit the local papers in Ohio with the Congressman promising that the would do all he could to bring that deserving war hero (the dog) "home".

Because of "Congressional Interest", the mutt rotated with his master.
End of Part One.

Part Two.

A friend sent me a followup newspaper clipping. Small town Ohio had a welcoming committee at the local airport to greet the returning heroes.

The Congressman was there, speech in hand. The band was playing and the crowd was cheering until the "hero" came out of the plane carrying the scroungy mutt in his arms.

For some reason, I've always felt that the writer of Police Academy, or one of the other popular movie spoofs of the 70's received some of their inspiration from that scene at the airport.