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NAVY, Official:

Hubbard's record is forged
by Scientology

by
Chris Owen

Jun 17, 1999


      A few months ago, Karin Spaink put on her website a scan of what Scientology claims to be L. Ron Hubbard's Notice of Separation (US Navy form DD214). This document has been used as the basis of Scientology's claims that Hubbard "won 21 medals and palms" for his service in the US Navy during World War II. It can be found on Karin's website, incl. a covering note by Scientology [smaller pics here here].

      This morning I received confirmation from the US Navy itself that the DD214 distributed by Scientology is not authentic:

  • The DD214 claims that Hubbard commanded the USS Mist. The USS Mist was a motor launch converted during World War I into a guard boat. She was returned to her owner in February 1919, when Hubbard was only eight years old. She did not serve in World War II.

  • The DD214 claims that Hubbard won two stars to his Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal. One of Hubbard's ships, the USS Algol, won two stars in the APAC theatre for 1 April-10 April 1945 and 10 July-3 August 1945. Only one star was awarded for each engagement; Hubbard would have had to have been in both battles to have been awarded both stars. However, Hubbard had left the ship on 28 September 1944 and was ineligible for the stars. The US Navy and Marine Corps Awards Manual and the relevant Ship's Movement Card shows that his other Pacific vessel, the USS PC-815, took part in no engagements and was awarded no battle stars.

  • The DD214 is purportedly signed by Lieutenant Commander Howard D. Thompson, US Navy Reserve. No officer of this name is listed in the 1944 Register of Commissioned and Warrant Officers of the United States Naval Reserve.

      As the Naval Historical Center comment dryly in their letter, "several inconsistencies exist between Mr. Hubbard's DD214 and the available facts".

      Other "inconsistencies" which I have independently confirmed:

  • The DD214 claims that Hubbard commanded the USS Howland. No such vessel exists in the US Naval Vessel Register.

  • The DD214 claims that Hubbard was awarded the "British Victory Medal". No such medal exists, and the British Ministry of Defence has no record of having awarded a medal to Hubbard.

  • The DD214 claims that Hubbard was awarded the "Dutch Victory Medal". No such medal exists.

  • The DD214 claims that Hubbard was awarded the "European Theater" medal (probably the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal). Hubbard never served in the EAME theatre of operations.

  • The DD214 claims that Hubbard was at college for four years and held a degree in Civil Engineering. In fact, he dropped out after two years and held no academic qualifications.

  • The DD214 claims that Hubbard was awarded a Purple Heart with palm. This is awarded only for combat injuries. No such injury is recorded in his medical reports, nor is he recorded as having being in combat with the enemy at any time.

  • The DD214 claims that Hubbard was awarded a "Marine Medal" (there is no medal of this name). His only service with the US Marine Corps was as a reservist in 1930-31, during which time his total period of active service was five weeks (all training); he was discharged with the instruction that he was not to be re-enlisted. He would not have been eligible for any USMC medals in World War II.

  • Despite what the DD214 claims there is no record of Hubbard having been awarded any commendations, stars (not palms) to the American Campaign Medal, Rifle and Pistol Expert ribbons or the Distinguished Marksman ribbon.

      A final damning fact is that the DD214 distributed by Scientology is very different to that in Hubbard's US Navy file - that one does fit the records of Hubbard's naval service.

      The only possible conclusion is that Scientology's copy of the document is in fact an incompetently executed forgery. The only question remaining is whodunnit. Does anyone know a graphologist? It would be interesting to see if there were any similarities between L. Ron Hubbard's signature and that of the fictitious Lt Cdr Thompson, which I suspect there are.

      One other interesting thing which the Navy sent to me was a copy of the USS PC-815's Movements Card (a form recording the movements of a Navy vessel), which provides a complete history of the PC-815. It seems to have had a very quiet career before its unfortunate sinking in 1945:

Depart: 19 May 1943 from Portland, OR
(26 May 1943 directed to Seattle)

Arrive: (28?) May 1943 at Seattle, WA
(directed to San Diego)
Depart 29 May 1943

Arrive: 30 May 1943 at Almeda, CA
(ordered to escort MV CROATAN to San Diego)
Depart: 1 June 1943

Arrive: 1 June 1943 at San Diego, CA
(shakedown and training)
(Hubbard relieved of command on 7 July)
(ordered to escort MV TINOSA until 2nd darkness)
Depart: 7 November 1943

Arrive: 9 November 1943 at San Diego, CA

(There is now a jump forward to 1945; the PC-815 appears to have been inactive through 1944 and no movements are recorded for that year)

(ordered to escort MV COD until 2nd darkness)
Depart: 28 February 1945 from San Diego, CA

Arrive: 2 March 1945 at San Diego, CA

On 2 November 1945, the PC-815 was assigned active duty with the Pacific Fleet. On 11 November, however, the ship collided with the destroyer USS Laffey off San Diego and sank within two minutes. One man (presumably from the PC-815) was recorded as missing and probably drowned. Navy divers demolished the wreck in early November 1945.

Here's what the Navy said in their letter:


Dear Mr. Owen:

      This is in reply to your Freedom of Information Act request for information on the veracity of the DD214 submitted by LaFayette Ronald Hubbard which was forwarded to our office by the Navy Personnel Command, for separate reply.

      I am enclosing brief histories of USS ALGOL and USS MIST from this Center's Dictionary of American Navy Fighting Ships, as well as extracts from the Navy and Marine Corps Medals and Awards Manual, which list ALGOL as receiving two engagement stars for 1 April-10 April 1945 and 10 July-3 August 1945 to be worn on the Asiatic/Pacific campaign medal. However, USS MIST did not participate in World War II. The Ships' Movement Card for USS PC-815 stated that it was on the west coast of the U.S. until it was sunk in September 1945 by a collision with USS LAFFEY. Neither MIST or PC-815 received engagement stars for World War II. Thus Lieutenant Hubbard could not have received all the engagement stars claimed on the DD214. His official service records is held by the Military Personnel Records Center, 9700 Page Boulevard, St. Louis, Missouri 63132-5100. Because of Privacy Act concerns the information from these records is available to the veteran, or if deceased, to the next of kin. I enclose this Center's information packet on the service records which includes an order form.

      I am also sending extracts from the 1944 Register of Commissioned and Warrant Officers of the United States Naval Reserve which does not have a listing for a Howard D. Thompson. In July 1944, Lieutenant Lafayette R. Hubbard is listed D-VS (Deck Officers, commissioned and warrant, including boatswains and ships clerks, qualified for specialist duties). The schools he attended by July 1944 were Sound for Sonar, and Subchaser Training Center.

      Several inconsistencies exist between Mr. Hubbard's DD214 and the available facts. Your interest in naval history is appreciated and I hope that this information will prove helpful.

Sincerely,

Kathleen M. Lloyd
for BERNARD F. CAVALCANTE
Head, Operational Archives Branch






From      : Chris Owen {chriso@lutefisk.demon.co.uk}
Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject   : Re: NAVY: Official - Hubbard's "record" *is*
            forged
Date      : Fri, 18 Jun 1999 00:32:03 +0100
Message-ID: {8qWgtQAzVYa3EwRX@lutefisk.demon.co.uk}

In article {376981E0.4E5C@xs.net},
Tommy {Tommy_sp**gespam@xs.net} writes

> Chris Owen wrote:

>> A few months ago, Karin Spaink put on her website a
>> scan of what Scientology claims to be L. Ron
>> Hubbard's Notice of Separation (US Navy
>> form DD214).  This document has been used as the
>> basis of Scientology's claims that Hubbard "won 21
>> medals and palms" for his service in the US
>> Navy during World War II.  It can be found on
>> Karin's website at
>> http://www.xs4all.nl/~kspaink/pix/lrhmedals.gif, with
>> a covering note by Scientology at
>> http://www.xs4all.nl/~kspaink/pix/lrhmedexp.gif

>> This morning I received confirmation from the US Navy
>> itself that the DD214 distributed by Scientology is
>> not authentic:


> My father was career Navy, and served in real combat,
> and *qualified* for his Purple Heart. I puke on the
> skull of this lying fraud. His lies (and the support
> of his lies by the Co$) insult and degrade the
> servicemen and servicewomen who gave their LIVES to
> stop *another* cult of personality who thought they
> had the right to rid the world of supressives. How
> DARE this lying cult cheapen the sacrifices of those
> who gave *all* for this country?????


Ah, but it gets better still.  The Church of Scientology
has also circulated a photograph showing a variety of
medals and ribbons (see
http://news.scientology.org/mag/boston/img/pg11_2.gif),
which are claimed to be those awarded to Hubbard for his
war service.  Their origin is a mystery.  Hubbard
evidently did not have them in 1974, when he requested
them from the US Navy; the Navy only sent him four; so
where did the other seventeen come from?  The most
probable answer - tawdry though it is - is that Hubbard,
or his agents, bought them or had them donated by
Scientologist war veterans, and then claimed falsely
that they were his.  Those claims are still being made
to this very day.

And as someone who currently works with the British
military - with friends and colleagues risking their
lives in Kosovo - it sickens me, too.


From : "Maggie Council DiPietra" {mdipietra@earthlink.net} Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology Subject : Blackfeet blood brother Date : Thu, 17 Jun 1999 21:25:24 -0400 Message-ID: {3769a006.0@news2.lightlink.com} ---------- In article {lscFDHwDJ.BD@netcom.com}, lsc@netcom.com (Lisa Chabot) wrote: > Chris Owen {chriso@lutefisk.demon.co.uk} wrote: >> In article {seca3.1171$FK.25461@news.itd.umich.edu}, >> Rebecca Jo McLaughlin {beckyjo@umich.edu} writes >>> Chris Owen {chriso@lutefisk.demon.co.uk} wrote: >>>> This morning I received confirmation from the US >>>> Navy itself that the DD214 distributed by >>>> Scientology is not authentic: >>>> * The DD214 claims that Hubbard commanded the USS >>>> Mist. The USS Mist was a motor launch converted >>>> during World War I into a guard boat. >>>> She was returned to her owner in February 1919, >>>> when Hubbard was only eight years old. She did >>>> not serve in World War II. >>> oops. >> Actually I got that slightly wrong. Hubbard was born >> in March 1911, so in February 1919 he was only >> *seven* years old. Precocious kid, wasn't he, >> commanding a gunboat in the Great War? > It's only what you'd expect of a child that was > breakin' broncos before he would walk. Not to mention > the only blood brother in the entire history of the > Blackfeet. It's a crime that the Church of > Scientology doesn't publicize these feats enough. Um, Lisa, pleasure to make your acquaintance-- A few years back I needed to call up a professor who happens to be head of Blackfeet Studies at Blackfeet Community College as well as a member of the Blackfeet tribe near the Hub's old stomping grounds in Montana. While I had John on the phone, I asked him about Hubbard's claim. He very slowly and patiently explained to me that the whole concept of Indian blood brothers is a HOllywood construct. The only time Blackfeet ever maim themselves ritually is if a woman commits adultery, her nose is clipped. And of course, there is Sundance, but that is a very holy dance that a little snotnosed white kid would have been admitted to about the time Hubbard says his Uncle I mean Old Tom story happened, particularly because the Blackfeet were engaged in some particularly hostile relations with white people who, at the time were making the Blackfeet victims of some of the first recorded drive-bys. Just thought it was tiem to bring that up again. --- M.C.DiPietra {mdipietra@earthlink.net} "Hell, if you understood everything i say, you'd be me!" -Miles Davis


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