Freshfield

Surname: Freshfield
Christian Names: Robert Michael
Country: Australia
State or Province: NSW
City or Town: Granville
Service: Army
Case Notes:

Robert Michael Freshfield is a wannabe and a typical show pony used to draw potential members into Veteran's organisations in the struggle for membership numbers, public recognition, and funds.

Many ex-service organisations harbour these individuals knowing full well that their tales of brave or spectacular war service are nothing more than lies.  In one way these wannabes are like the Vietnam War protestors as described by Hanoi, "useful idiots"

 

His freely published address block is:

Mr Bob Freshfield.  

Jnr Vice President

Vietnam Veterans Association of Australia.  

NSW Branch Inc. 
Phone: 02 9682 1788  Fax: 02 9682 6134

At time of publication the executive members of the VVFA Granville were , according to their website.

National President: Tim McCombe OAM
Vice Presidents: Bob Tyrrell
Secretary/Treasurer: Bob Tyrrell (Acting)
NSW State President: Tim McCombe OAM
NSW Hon. Secretary: Nev Woodward  

In emails to six State VVFA Secretaries we asked if Freshfield had ever been seen to wear the Infantry Combat Badge, there were only two replies.

One, from Nev Woodward, said that he has never seen him wear it, another said our representative should "get a life" 

Freshfield's 3 1/2 months of service with 1 Australian Reinforcement Unit (1ARU) at Nui Dat and his 6 months with AFV Amenities and Welfare Unit, 1 Australian Logistic Support Group (1ALSG), Vung Tau, are well documented and these records deny any claims he has made of being a bush soldier with two Battalions and a semi-autonomous Infantry Platoon.

We base this exposure on information supplied by Veterans who sent us copies of emails written by Freshfield and a message that was posted by him in an online Infantry Battalion newsletter.  The Veterans supplied statements as to the authenticity of the emails.  

We have been informed that he denies ever having sent his Vietnam service details over the internet, "someone else sent them after they hacked his password."

If this was the case, this "hacker" sent emails using Freshfield's name and e-mail address from late 2001 to mid 2004, before the impersonation was discovered and the password changed. Imagine that.

From our standpoint we firmly believe that the emails were written and sent by Freshfield.

Perhaps we could agree with him in one way in that he did not send his Vietnam service details over the internet, what he sent was a pack of lies and had little to do with his actual service.

In a total of three emails and a Battalion website newsletter entry, he made claims of war service with two Infantry Battalions and D&E Platoon Nui Dat.

The Infantry Battalions he says he served with on operations are 3RAR and 4RAR, the operations took place from 6 March to 2 October 1971.

In one ridiculous claim he said that he was in the bush on operations with both Battalions continuously from 18 June to 17 September with no break back at Nui Dat although there was a five day gap between two of them. The names of operations are available on the internet as are the dates, he obviously didn't take note of the dates.

In one email he went too far and angered some Veterans when he wrote;

"I was with Bravo Company 3RAR during Overlord. as [sic] nearly wiped out in the APC ambush on 12th June. Lost 5 mates, and 2 others a few days later" 

He also wrote.

"Served in reinforcement as well as D&E Nui Dat from February to September"  

In September 2002 this message was posted on a 3rd Battalion Association website.  (Please bookmark us before going to the site below as it will take you away from our site) 

Scroll down the above page to "WEBSITE CONTACTS" and you will find this entry

Bob Freshfield <bobsup@ozemail.com.au> is the webmaster for the Vietnam Veterans Federation www.vvfagranvile.org.au. He writes

" I checked out your site and found it a worthwhile place to browse. I was a 'Nasho" doing time at 1ARU during 1971. I got sent to, but not posted, 3RAR during "Briar Patch", "Overlord", "Iron Fox", then to 4RAR (not posted) for "Hermit Park", "North Ward" and "Ivanhoe". Shifted around among 3RAR BCoy and 4RAR CCoy and the Kiwi Coy as well. A lot of forward scout work too! - I will put a link on our site, as soon as time permits"

Fact. Infantry Privates were not "seconded to", "sent to" or "shafted off to" other units as Freshfield stated in his emails. They were posted or detached to other units with the required paperwork being raised.

For you old Infantrymen, can you picture a reinforcement from 1ARU joining you for a few days on an operation and he's given forward scout duties? Never happen. 

This was a particularly stupid claim to make.

"I was with Bravo Company 3RAR during Overlord. as [sic] nearly wiped out in the APC ambush on 12th June. Lost 5 mates, and 2 others a few days later"

">>>> the ambush was on 3 APC's taking D&E and Reo's back to The Dat after Overlord finished, and 3RAR didn't want us anymore. Well, not for a few weeks."

Here's why. There are some well-worn myths about this factual Armoured Personnel Carrier ambush and Freshfield only retells these myths, not the facts, clearly displaying that he was nowhere near the incident.

We would like to publish the facts of this ambush but there are too many wannabes who would like to use them. There is another traumatised wannabe on our books who thought he was there on the day as well, his tale mirrors Freshfield's and the myths but is actually more gruesome. 

To review Freshfield's claims in brief.

Served on operations with 3RAR and 4RAR, 6 March to 2 October, forward scout....Denied.  

Served in Vietnam beginning February 1971....Denied

Served at Nui Dat from February to October 1971....Denied.

"Seconded" to Battalions for operational duties....Denied 

Served with D&E Platoon, HQ Coy, 1ATF, Nui Dat....Denied.

Was present when an Armoured Personnel Carrier was ambushed causing loss of life....Denied. 

His records show he arrived in Vietnam on 25 March, this date is correct according to other Military records and a letter he wrote to the Central Army Records Office,  (CARO 

Two sets of records also show he did indeed leave Nui Dat for Vung Tau on 7 July.

We could find nothing in the way of records or supplied information that could give truth to his lies about serving with 3RAR, 4RAR and D&E Platoon, Nui Dat.  We did, however, find plenty of information to show that he was never even near these units.

His actual Vietnam service was:

1 Australian Reinforcement Unit, Nui Dat. From 25 March to 7 July 1971 with a seven day detachment to another unit which we believe to be AFV Amenities and Welfare Unit, 1ALSG, Vung Tau.

He took a two day leave  from 1ARU on 2 -3 July prior to finally being posted to AFV Amenities on 7 July, returning to Australia on 2 December 1971. 

People not connected to CPMH had questioned Freshfield on these claims, his replies varied and are shown in time order. All communications were by e-mail, they were sent to, and replies received from, Bob Freshfield  bobsup@ozemail.com.au  

November 2001. His reply was not recorded after being challenged by a Veteran but the Veteran's memory says it was something like this.

"He more or less said he didn't care as he knew what he did and I didn't"

16 June 2004.

"I don't care anymore about what I did or didn't do in Vietnam.  I won't discuss it anymore over the internet. Get a life."   

In answer to the same questions from CPMH his reply changed from dismissive to outright denial, a new defence.

11 September 2005.

"The claims made in your email were NOT made by me. I have no idea about any email supposedly to be have been sent by me [sic] as I have NEVER made such claims on the internet. I will stand by whatever records the Army have of me.  I have no idea what claims you are referring to. This will be the last response from me on this matter"

His reply to an e-mail from a concerned person who questioned his post on the 3RAR Association website.

22 September 2005.

"I have NEVER put my Vietnam Service details over the internet. Mischievous beings who had access to my emails through Mymail.com.au over the internet sent out a lot of crap until I changed my password, and it stopped."

A review of two replies.

11 September 2005.

"I have no idea what claims you are referring to"

Why didn't he tell us the "hacker" story he used in his next reply?

22 September 2005.  

"Mischievous beings who had access to my emails >>>sent out a lot of crap until I changed my password, and it stopped"

Did he finally discover this impersonation sometime between 11 and 22 September 2005 after it had been going on since November 2001? This seems highly unlikely.  

A Veteran who served with D&E Platoon at the time of the APC ambush and who actually lost mates on that day, sent this email to Freshfield on the 33rd anniversary of the incident.

----- Original Message -----

From:  xxxxxxxxxxxxx 

Cc:  (many VVFA officers)

Sent: Saturday, June 12, 2004 11:40 PM

Subject: Bulls**t

Bob Freshfield..

Today was a special day for me and I have to reply for you.

Today, at  xxxx hrs, 12 June 2004, I observed and commemorated the deaths of  xxxx of my Platoon mates, the deaths of  xxxx 3 Cav mates and the severe wounding of  xxxx  Platoon mates that occurred during Operation Overlord, 12 June 1971.

You were not there on that day, even though you allude that you were.

Since your mails to me showing an attempt to have been a bush soldier I have done some checks on your Vietnam service.

It appears you were not a bush soldier at all. Your roll call records appear below the garbage that you wrote to me. (records deleted) 

It would appear that you are some kind of wanker who wishes to expand his war service in the interest of gaining higher personal recognition and or maybe higher membership numbers for your veterans group.

In either case, I find that you are a person who could not be trusted to tell the truth in any way shape or form. You are a disgrace to the memory of fallen comrades.

I strongly object to you presenting yourself as a person who was with my mates on the day they died and or were wounded requiring their evacuation to Australia.

I have a feeling that someone like you would have been rejected by D&E members as unfit to walk the weeds with us. I trust that you do not wear the ICB.

I have sent CCs of this mail to every VVFA organisation I could find on the internet in way of protest against wankers like you having the affront to misrepresent your war service whilst a senior member of this organisation.

I have also copied the President and Secretary of the VVAA, National Council, NSW Branch.

This Veteran received only limited replies to this email. One from Freshfield telling him to "get a life", a few from Freshfield's VVFA State President at the time, a man who completely lost the plot and promptly abandoned him, and from the President of the VVAA, National Council, NSW Branch.

 Due to Freshfield's reply to our questions we have not sent him our usual formal letter asking for his explanation of the allegations made against him, he said it all with,

"I have no idea what claims you are referring to. This will be the last response from me on this matter" 

Fair enough, but he may have to discuss what he did and didn't do in Vietnam with the DVA Fraud Control Unit, as may his friend from 104 Signals Squadron who also claims to have been involved in the 12 June '71 APC incident, a former VVFA Sub-Branch President and pensions officer.  

Pensions officers. We have the names, ranks and Corps of every person who was involved in this 12 June 1971 APC incident. Should you wish to verify any claims of personnel being present on the day, please contact us at information@anzmi.net  

This is published in the public interest, particularly that of the Vietnam Veteran Community. All information presented here is fact and the truth. Reports from private citizens are supported by statements of fact and statutory declarations.

 

Located in: Stolen Valour
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