SCAM ALERT: “Homeless Vet Dying of Lung Cancer Needs Help”

By Max R. Weller

(Boulder County Sheriff’s Office photo)

I first posted about this scam on November 27th, 2012 in a piece entitled Panhandler alert: he’s neither disabled nor a vet.

Now, Richard Grant a.k.a. [Denver] King is flying a new sign, the wording of which is the title of this post. It’s the same old scam, however.

I discovered this on Saturday, as I was relaxing in the shade near the corner of N. Broadway & U.S. 36, reading and watching the world go by. I felt no need to play the role of humble beggar (nor did I do so yesterday). I wondered why Mr. Grant was out there for about six hours during the course of the day, however, since he never makes even half as much as the minimum hourly wage he could earn by flipping burgers at any greasy spoon restaurant. So, after I’d set up my nearby campsite around 6PM I walked back to the corner just to take a peek at his sign, given his previous phony claims of being disabled and a veteran. He asked me what was going on and I replied, “[Your sign] is all I wanted to see; it’s bullshit!” He got rather upset, and told me it’s nobody’s business that he’s standing out there, trying to rip off kindhearted passersby.

In case you don’t read the previous post linked to above, here are the reasons I know his claims are false: 1) He says he went through Marine recruit training at Fort Bragg in North Carolina, which is an Army base; 2) He claims that he served in Operation Desert Storm ca. 1991, when he would have been 15 years of age according to the DOB on file with the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office; 3) He has no idea what his MOS (military occupational specialty) was; 4) He has no idea what DD Form 214 is, and can’t produce one to prove his military service; and 5) He’s been “dying of lung cancer” for years, or so he says, but appears to be in good health, and he self-medicates with marijuana he gets on the streets.

Yesterday morning, as I left Boulder Shelter for the Homeless, Mr. Grant (currently banned from that facility, no doubt for good reason) warned me: “I better not hear you’ve been writing about me on your blog again! I will file a lawsuit against you and then I’ll come after you.” I told him to bring on the lawsuit, and also urged him not to wait to “come after” me, but to do so at that moment. Of course, wuss that he is, he just kept running his mouth as I waited for the SKIP bus. Maybe I ought to be afraid — Mr. Grant has stated in the past that he’s sent a couple of guys away to prison, merely for insulting him.

Any of you vets out there who would like to have a word with this scam artist can find him in north Boulder at N. Broadway & U.S. 36 almost every day. Just look for the really ugly hillbilly who has a bike and kiddie trailer parked in the median there . . .

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2 thoughts on “SCAM ALERT: “Homeless Vet Dying of Lung Cancer Needs Help”

  1. pimom1

    Well Max, you would love where I live in Ecuador. It’s high, like Boulder @ 8,500ft in the Andes mountains. Thing is, it has same weather 12 months a yr. daytime 70-80 highs, night around 45. We are getting into the summer months now of May-August, when it doesn’t have the tropical “pop up” storms as much, so it’s dryer. However, summer day temps will be colder by 5deg sometimes 60-65. Many people leave Cuenca for lower elevations because they don’t like the coolness. Our town of Cuenca, Ecuador sits in a valley, surrounded by Andes mtn 360 deg. We have four rivers running through it, which are my land marks, so I know where I am on the bus. Being a senior citizen/resident, we ride the bus with a card, for 12-1/2 cents per ride. The government allows us to sign up for the free healthcare here. There’s low cost private ins. too. We are on the US dollar. Food is cheap, organic….straight from the farm! I buy root veggies that still have dirt on them from being recently picked! Love it!

    Our panhandlers are different here. I’ve been told they have permits. The young ones all seem to “do” entertaining. Juggling is a favorite. Dressed like circus performers. Selling stuff is a favorite….that’s all over though…street vendors. I go drumming at a circle by the Tomebomba river every Sunday after church, and give my change to a man who appreas to hav had a stroke, or polio. He’s the only one I’ve ever seen who doesn’t have “talent” so I wonder if there’s some kind of “requirement”.
    The expat communities do a lot of volunteering and donation to orphanages and elder homes. The pastor of our new church start here, is actually a missionary, who is an RN and PHD psychologist, and he is training doctors, nurses about hospice care. There has been no such thing here before, because EC families just take care of elders, and live in extended family. But now…..there are gringos, and a few abandoned elders, who need services like this at the end of life.

    I’m having a ball, and know that I can live out my life with much more quality here after my husband is gone (83 w/cancer). It’s been interesting comparing your stories with my current home. EC is said to be a kind of “Republic” like the US began with. I like the current President, and hope his legacy lives on forever! If we could just sell our house on the gulf coast of Alabama, we would be free, and not have to pinch penny’s as we do! Oh!! We’ve got our share of granola eaters here too :-))

    Sarah

    Reply

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