‘Take That Uniform Off!’: Veteran Confronts Panhandler Wearing Uniform in Alleged Case of Stolen Valor

‘Take That Uniform Off!’: Veteran Confronts Panhandler Wearing Uniform in Alleged Case of Stolen Valor

A Florida veteran took matters into his own hands when he spoke to a ‘homeless’ man claiming to be a veteran. The man was panhandling and wearing an Army uniform outside MacDill Air Force Base. There was a detail that the drifter didn’t notice about his ‘uniform’- and the incredible exchange will blow your mind:


“Take off our uniform!” he shouted at the guy, chasing him down the street. “You take that uniform off! You take our uniform off!”

Being chased on foot by Goodwin, the man began taking the uniform off.

“I’m sorry, sir,” the individual replied to Goodwin.

“Don’t apologize to me! Take that and throw it in the garbage. I don’t want you to wear it anymore! That’s my uniform! My brothers died wearing that uniform! … Take that and throw it away! Don’t put it back on!” Goodwin shouted at the man once more as he left the scene.

Goodwin recounted what took place to WTVT.

“I was angry. I was frustrated. I was sad,” he said.

“Maybe one of the reasons I was so into this yesterday is tomorrow I’m burying a good friend who is a Marine…I’m putting that man in the ground tomorrow,” Goodwin added. “And I think that seeing this guy in uniform and wearing the uniform that my brothers and sisters have died in, it was more than I was willing to stand and take.”

Goodwin told WTVT that the individual told him he was in the special forces, but his uniform had a Junior ROTC patch. When questioned, he said the man failed to provide an adequate answers and was unable to produce a military ID card.

Goodwin said he felt a moral obligation to call the man out, telling WTVT he couldn’t let the panhandler take money from passerby using a fake story.

“Not on my watch. Not yesterday. Not today. Not tomorrow,” he said

Using a fake story like that to garner sympathy is just sick and wrong. Our veterans earned the right to wear our uniform, and to soil it’s image for a few bucks? Just sad. I bet this guy won’t be running his little scam anymore.

Written by Katie McGuire. Follow Katie on Twitter @GOPKatie, On Facebook, or email the author at [email protected]


Writer, Blogger. Political aficionado. Addicted to all levels of government campaigns.

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