Saturday, June 6, 2009

Howard Manoian: An About Face

Happy D-Day.

I just violated that pesky Golden Rule about doing unto others...I did a piece for this blog about a single story I had read in the Boston Herald this morning:

http://www.bostonherald.com/news/regional/view/2009_06_06_Phony_paratrooper_to_be_feted_by_French:_D-Day_vet_‘misrepresented_his_service_/srvc=home&position=4

I don't know the whole story here, and I leapt before I looked. If the proverbial shoe were on the other foot, I would want a chance to offer my own version of events. However, my original post assumed everything in this story was correct, and that Howard Manoian had greatly embellished his service on D-Day.

I will re-post once I have a better understanding of the events surrounding this -- thanks!

6 comments:

Abe said...

I was born in Lowell and have known the Manoian family for all of that time. We called him "Humpo" based on his Armenian name. His father came to this country and joined the Army during WWI and was sent back to Europe. His mother was orphaned by the Turks and her story is heart breaking. His brother Sam was in the Navy during the war and he died by drowning in trying to save a kid that fell into the river running by the Lowell Post Office. His younger brother, Mike, joined the Navy later and lives in Manchester. Patriotism is in their blood. They all served.

The New Englander said...

Abe,

Thanks for mentioning all that...I will post this comment on its own so it doesn't get lost in the shuffle (I fear that's what would happen to any comment not on the first *page* of the blog)..

best,
gp

OmahaBeachMartin said...

From:
www.Omaha-Beach.Org

I know Howard scince 2002.
Can't believe that he faked all these stories over the years.

He was always in the middle of the crowds at St-Mere-Eglise around D-Day every year.

Martin

anniebananie said...

I have known Howard for several years. The information presented in this story is wrong, plain and simple. Perhaps this should be a reminder to us all that we cannot believe everything that we read.

Thank you for taking the time to find out the facts.

Displaced said...

I am a paratrooper, and I have met Howard. Saying the story is not accurate; and Howard should be heard before anyone passes judgement is how situations like this occur. It has been several months and not a single word from Howard, which if you know Howard is odd, since he is never at a loss for words.

The evidence is pretty overwhelming. He is not on the D-Day jump manifests, which is impossible if he particpated in the jump. He is not on the Market-Garden jump manifest either; so you can say to yourself that they screwed up and didn't put him on one, but both?

Michael said...

I'm a military history enthusiast, and I heard Howard tell his story in a documentary. He had great charisma, and captivated me, which is surely what made him so popular with everyday people. Regardless of anything else, this man served his country at arguably the most important time in its history and was surely so proud of that, that he made the mistake of fabricating what he did in the war. Big deal, he's human. Some people fabricate things, it's a common human trait. Although I'm sorry for those who are embarrassed by this because they were duped, they should have checked into it before spending tons of money to feature him in documentaries and such. Don't blame Howard, he's only human, while the film makers are the professionals. I've heard of plenty of veterans fabricate their service, Howard's just had such a great influence due to his beloved nature, IMHO. RIP Mr. Manoian. I thank he and his family for his great service to my country, regardless of his role.