This updates a 2016 article we did with the help of Guardian of Valor (GOV) on Rudi Gresham, the Fake Green Beret officer who said he did 2 tours in Vietnam with 5th SFG(A).
The original article comes up as a bad link as the owner of GOV tapped out, popped smoke, and shut down.
Records are screenshots 70-75. When you get to the bottom of the picture section, click the red bar for more pictures.
This will also be a more in-depth article.
Rudi Gresham seemed to use claims of being a retired officer in the Green Berets and 2 tours in Vietnam, to climb the corporate ladder of various Associations, Foundations, and Businesses to the highest levels and rub shoulders with some of America’s most powerful people. Could he have done the same without living the lie? We’ll never know.
On many internet sites Rudi Gresham, the fake Green Beret, is referred to as every rank from an SF Captain to Colonel; Special Forces (Ret); Special Forces Association Spokesman; Combat veteran w/ 2 tours in Vietnam; a Green Beret; served as General Yarborough’s Aide-de-camp; and served with Medal of Honor Recipient Colonel Ola Mize. ALL FALSE
If someone referred to you as LTC Gresham or COL Rudi Gresham in print, and you weren't, a man of honor and self-respect would correct that mistake immediately. What follows is a small timeline of Rank changing over the years. These do not include the articles that falsely claim him a Green Beret or Vietnam vet. Simply his Rank changing:
Pre 1971: In the picture wearing a beret, Captain
1995: Article, Memphis Flyer, Double Exposure, Captain
1999: Book, Killing the Dream, Major
2001: Article, The Moonduster Chronicles, LTC
2002: Article: The Pilot, Major
2003: Book, CNN’s Tailwind Tale, LTC
2004: Article, Journal of Spec Ops Medicine, Simply HON, you would think a military journal would have his rank.
2008: Article, Kentucky New Era, Major
2012: Article, Tampa Bay Times, Major
2014: Facebook Post by Politician, Colonel
2014: Book, The Indian Ring, Green Beret Officer
2014: Facebook post by someone running for office, Colonel
2015: Article, Bryce In the woods, Colonel
2016: Article, Muhammad Ali, The day the Champ came to Orange City, Captain
Over many years of inaccurate reporting, Rudi Gresham did not make any attempt to correct the untruthful ranks, titles, or statuses until our initial article came out in 2016. It also appears that he or his agent tried to remove many of the false reports from the internet as many of the initial links are now fatal.
The following claims reported in print, video, and/or personal conversations are false: He was NEVER Special Forces or Green Beret depending on reporting; NEVER an Officer; NEVER served two tours Vietnam with 5th AFG(A) and MACV-SOG, and NEVER served under General Yarborough or with Col Ola Mize as you can hear in his own words
👉 Rudi in his own words 👈
The only truth in our initial statement is that he was indeed a spokesman for the Special Forces Association. Sadly, his lies and gift of gab convinced others to vet him as a Life Member of, and Spokesman for, the SFA which he immediately resigned the day we provided the SFA his Military Records obtained under a Freedom of Information Act Request.
Reports of multiple ranks should have drawn attention to his other claims, and it did. The SFA tried multiple times over the years to get his records as many members believed he was a fraud. Each time National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) would come back with no results. We're told he stated 5th SFG(A) and MACV-SOG in Vietnam along with 10th SFG(A) in Bad Toelz on his SFA membership application. When he was confronted with the no results from NPRC by the SFA, Rudi said the Social Security Number was wrong as the reason they didn't get back any results. Supposedly, Rudi then met with the Secretary of the SFA Kxxxxx Cxxxxx at that time and showed him his DD214 and the Secretary Attested "That he did have SF Qualifications". We were told that no one else saw that DD214 nor has anybody seen it since. Yet the issue was closed at that time. Hmmm
Over the years, no one who actually served with Rudi in SF could be found, and for good reason. Records show he spent 3 years in the Army and never even attempted SF training much less served in the units he claimed. He might have passed by legit Green Berets as he was stationed at Ft Bragg for about 291 days, minus the 20 when he went AWOL.
When we saw the chatter about him in a vetted SF forum, we decided to get his records. We had them in 8 days. We had reached out to one of our Pl's and he found a copy of his S.C. Driver license. His first name was Hans, not Rudolph. Those looking into him multiple times over the years, actually had one of the 3 SSN results correct but with the wrong first name, thus always received a "No Records Found" from NPRC result. Not even his best friend knew his actual first name until we informed him.
From what we remember, we gave his actual legit records to the SFA on a Saturday morning and he left the SFA that very afternoon. We asked Rudi for comment in 2016 when we initially broke the story and he immediately went into damage control. He and Mike Mika, President of SFA Ch 34, created a website that pretty much did nothing except mention what a good guy Rudi was. It provided no proof Rudi was indeed a Green Beret except for the 3-page letter Mike Mika wrote for Rudi. It falsely said the SFA Vetted Rudi twice. From Mike Mika's letter: First, Mr. Rudi Gresham has been vetted twice by the SFA. In fact, he is the only member that I know of that has been vetted twice. The first time was by Jimmy Dean, then President of the SFA, and again in 2011 by Kenny Cannon, then Membership Chairman. In both instances, Mr. Gresham's vetting has stood up to very close scrutiny. That letter can be seen in picture section #14-17. What Mike Mika meant to say was that the SFA "tried" to get his records twice and never got a result. That's very different from "Vetting him twice"
While Rudi and Mike Mika were doing high-speed damage control and both still claiming Rudi legit, Guardians of the Green Beret set up a meeting between Mike Mika and the owner of GOV. The rep from GOV had to agree that no pictures are taken or recording be done before the meeting was agreed to.
Here is where you should put your coffee down so you don't spit it on your computer. Mike Mika President of SFA Chapter 34 told the GOV representative that Rudi was really...
wait for it...
wait for it...
wait for it... a covert operative for the CIA who really knows who killed MLK Jr and if we expose his lie, we’ll start a race war in America.
We still find that funny almost 5 years later and if we didn't hear almost the same thing from Rudi Gresham himself over the phone, we wouldn't have believed it.
At the time of our phone call with Rudi, he told us to read Killing the Dream chapter 32 and we will talk some more. We read it, called him back and he got angry saying something to the effect of "didn't I do enough good for you Green Berets over the years”. He was pissed and speaking in anger. His using the words "You Green Berets" is telling. He didn't say the community, the SF community, or fellow Green Berets, etc…
Rudi seemed mad that after reading chapter 32, we didn't buy into his lie that he was a covert operative for the CIA as he was trying to get us to believe. When your multi-decade lie is falling apart, you start grasping at straws. Covert CIA operative wasn’t the best choice. Sadly, it seemed Mike Mika was willing to repeat the CIA narrative for him.
We were also told by his best friend and legit Green Beret, who initially went to bat for him 110% as being legit that Rudi did indeed admit he was never a GB or in Vietnam during a heated phone call with him. An email sent to Rudi from his said friend is in the picture section labeled #17-21
Since our initial article, Rudi must have realized the gig is up as he has changed his military bio on his personal website to 3 years of active duty which would agree with what we found. Do his Records show what looks to be 6 different units with 5 different MOS's?
Records also show he was reduced in rank for going AWOL for 20 days in Sept of 1966
We reached out to both the Special Forces Association and Mike Mika for a comment.
The SFA responded in a rather timely manner. Their response can be In picture #23
They state for the record:
Memorandum for the Record Concerning Rudi Gresham (also known as Rudy Gresham and Hans Rudolph Gresham)
1) As per its mission statement, the Special Forces Association (SFA) serves as the voice for the Special Forces community, perpetuates Special Forces traditions and comradeship, advances the public image of Special Forces, and promotes the general welfare of the Special Forces community.
2) Rudi Gresham (also known as Rudy Gresham and Hans Rudolph Gresham) is no longer a member of the SFA.
3) He provided falsified military records to become a member of the SFA. It was determined that Rudi Gresham was never an SF-qualified soldier and, when he was confronted with this fact, he resigned from the SFA.
4) Rudi Gresham joined the SFA during a time prior to the Freedom of Information Act when access to military records was limited, making the SFA vetting process much less rigorous than it is today.
5) Please direct any inquiries to this matter to Mr. Doug Livermore, our Director of External Communications at CommunicationsDirector@specialforcesassociation.org
What we received a reply from Mike Mika... Crickets...
Rudi Gresham, you'll now be re-added to guardiansofthegreenberet.com Top Ten Hall of Zeroes
If Rudi Gresham has any verifiable legit DD214's, DD215's, NGB Form 22's, etc that can correct anything in this article, he can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
#RudiGresham, #HansRudolphGresham, #TailWind, #StolenValor, #GreenBeret, #MikeMika