An enormous scandal rocked the military world late on Saturday as it was discovered that what was thought to be the last surviving US Great War veteran was just two plucky young WW2 veterans in a long trenchcoat.
Buddy 'Gunslinger' Williams and Chuck 'Beachstormer' Thompson, the young pranksters who served at the beaches of Normandy together, were ousted when their coat dramatically split in two at a veterans rally in Jacksonville.
"All of a sudden, I heard a large tear," recalled Sergeant Samson, an attendee at the event. "I whipped around and saw the trenchcoat ripping apart - along with my dreams. You can't begin to understand how much I looked up to this - I mean, to these guys, and not just, like, literally."
There was an outbreak of hysteria amongst the civilian attendees, with reports that people took to sinking to their knees, beating the ground, and tearing up their little American flags - although not necessarily in that order. Several hospitalisations were reported.
We reached out to the two WW2 veterans at the centre of the scandal to get their side of the story.
"As military fervour in this country grows, people are demanding greater and greater acts of heroism, greater and greater histories of service from their servicemen," said Mr. Gunslinger. "The feeling between us was very much that being a pair of lowly WW2 veterans with only a few Purple Hearts between us just wasn't going to cut it. We needed to up the ante, so to speak."
His brother-in-arms (and legs) had a different version of events though.
"It's actually really embarrassing," said Mr. Beachstormer sheepishly. "This whole thing basically started out as a very successful halloween costume, and we just kind of ran with it."
by Ángel Saxon