In Nov. 6-12 Issue
An unsigned letter, requests through second parties and other contact strongly suggested questions should be asked of Lillard Pettyjohn about a line in his recent campaign ads.
Candidate Pettyjohn stressed in an interview this week that he was not lying about receiving the Congressional Medal of Honor.
Veterans have stressed that this medal is unconditionally the highest honor that can be conferred on any American fighting man or woman and that none of the records show Pettyjohn as being a recipient.
"I have several medals and ribbons," Pettyjohn said. "I have received commendations from members of Congress."
He went on to say that he is looking for the paperwork and the medal and said he earned honors as a trained member of a Underwater Demolition Team.
"They don't call it that now," he said. "They call it Navy Seals."
Pettyjohn said he took part in secret missions that he was sworn to secrecy about and could not reveal.
He added that he didn't know why people were so angry about his statements and said his detractors are just "weak-minded heathens" and were nothing more than "shade tree veterans."
Larry Rogers, a veteran, said "Do you know how many Congressional Medal of Honor recipients there are? — There are only about 300 living right now. I'd like to know which President he says hung it around his neck. — This is a serious matter. It is a serious offense. Falsely claiming to be a recipient of that honor is a major thing. It is a thing you just don't do!"
Inspection of different lists detailing the recipients of the CMH failed to prove Pettyjohn's claim.
Several veterans have commented that they believed making such a claim falsely is a crime.
Pettyjohn maintained through the interview that he had received such honors, even as the very distinctive award was described to him.
"I know what it is," he said.
Pettyjohn also said that if he'd know what a stir it would make he'd have never mentioned it, and maybe he should have worded the ad differently.