You weren’t there man! Sgt John Robertson is in fact a Vietnamese citizen.
44 years is one hell of a long time to go missing, and that is apparently just what happened to Sgt John Hartley Robertson. Reading more like a film plot than real life, Robertson’s helicopter was shot down in the jungles of Laos whilst on a top secret mission, and he was then imprisoned and tortured for years by Vietnamese forces. The story went that he escaped and was nursed back to health by a Vietnamese woman he would then start a family with, well a second one at least, and apparently he had recently been rediscovered after all this time.
Unfortunately this is all but a tale. The story of John Robertson was covered in a number of reputable sources (and the Daily Mail), and has since had to be amended, if not removed. For, using blood tests and finger print comparisons, it has been revealed that the man is in fact a fraud.
Not so much a grand American hero, the man was in fact a Vietnamese citizen of French origin named Dang Tan Ngoc, who apparently has a history of impersonating missing Vietnam war veterans. It is reported that Ngoc first came to the attention of the US military in 2006 when he started telling people he was Sgt John Hartley Robertson, but the con appeared to be up when he later admitted his real identity in questioning. He then once again began claiming he was Robertson in 2008, and he was taken to a US embassy in Cambodia to be fingerprinted. It was quickly established that the fingerprints did not match those of the missing army veteran.
However, these previous attempts did not stop plans for a documentary to be made about the most recent ‘discovery’, helped by a tearful admission by Robertson’s last remaining sister 80-year-old Jean Robertson Holly, who said “There’s no question. I was certain it was him in the video, but when I held his head in my hands and looked in his eyes, there was no question that was my brother.” There’s no confirmation over the senility of Jean, but we’d assume it’s high.
Quite how anyone believed that a 76 year old Vietnamese citizen of French origin was a USA war hero, for the THIRD time, is anyone’s guess.
Image: US ARMY (Wikimedia)