Yet Another Sad Chapter; This Time itís
Polito ďPaulĒ Olivas
Someone contacted me after
reading The Honolulu Star-Advertiser article by
William Cole that was picked up by Starts and
Stripes August 20, 2018.
Just by reading the article I
knew something wasnít right. The
Army Documentation arrived today September 24,
2018. Olivas didnít become a Paratrooper
until the end of February 1945 at Ft. Benning
and didnít get to
Europe until April 24, 1945. This means he
wasnít in Normandy, Holland or the Bulge. Olivas
was assigned to
Hq Co 2nd Bn 506th Prcht Inf
101st Abn Div at the end of May 1945.
Below is the email sent to
William Cole to warn him that Olivas was not what he
appeared to be.
Cole didnít respond which says a lot right there.
Someone sent me an
email over the weekend that was in reference to
Polito Olivas and yourself.
together those two emails and doing some basic
research here is a response to your email to the
unknown original email.
documents correcting a few errors.
For some reason
you think the iconic photo taken in Ravenoville,
France was taken on 6 June 1944. In reality it was
7 June 1944 in the morning.
Attached are two situation maps for 6 and
7 June 1944. That iconic photo and video taken
at the same time show that in the video version you
can see 4th Infantry Division men. The 4th Infantry
was not in Ravenoville until 7 June as you can see
in the two situation maps I've sent ahead to you.
I have also
attached the names of 9 of the 10 men in that
picture for your own reference.
Attached to this
email is a newspaper interview done about Mr. Olivas
in 1974. He mentions he was a Cook for 30 years in
Has Major Kevin
Boyd, the Public Affairs Officer for Special
Operations Command Pacific at Camp H.M. Smith
produced any records showing where Olivas was during
his time in the Army? A request has been made to
the Army for his records. If Mr. Olivia himself
wants to he can request all of his own records. I
have attached the form needed for a veteran to
request their own records.
The request made
will show where Olivas was during his 30 years in
the Army. Attached are examples of what records
will look like when Mr. Olivas records arrive.
The next issue is
this; in the 1920 Census he isnít listed but his
parents are. Then in the 1930 Census he is listed
as being 9 born in 1921, not 1918 as listed on his
Then in the 1940 Census he is listed as 19 not 22.
All he needs to go
is to produce his Birth Certificate to show that he
is 100 years old. That issue happened all the time
back in the day.
Now onto the
Facebook page from Special Operations Command
Pacific. I donít know who wrote that article but
there are many mistakes. The terms ďRed CurraheeĒ
and ďAir AssaultĒ didnít exist until Vietnam.
this ahead to Major Kevin Boyd, the Public Affairs
Officer for Special Operations Command Pacific at
Camp H.M. Smith. It will be interesting to see the
records used for Mr. Olivas article.
sent quite a few documents to Cole showing that
Olivas wasnít one of the 10 Soldiers in the
picture. I also sent maps for both June 6 and 7
1944 disproving Olivas claim that he was in
that iconic photo.
Now the key Olivas records have arrived. Itís a
shame that neither Cole nor Major Boyd reached out
to St. Louis for those records before putting out
Olivas was a cook in the Army from 1940 to 1970 as
he said when interviewed in 1974 and his records
prove that out. Olivas started saying he jumped
into Normandy and Holland and was in Bastogne in a
1983 article in the February 16, 1983 Honolulu
Advertiser. The only problem with that was he
The key records are part of the article and can be
downloaded. There are so many holes in his story
itís hard to pick the most outrageous one. For me
itís that Olivas lied saying he was in Normandy and
that he claimed to have been in the
Prcht Inf picture taken June 7, 1944.
bottom line is Olivas was a cook for his entire
Army career. He was in some very famous units but
only as a cook nothing more.
Olivas went to three
schools during his time in the Army. The first was
Cooks and Bakers 12 weeks, 4 weeks to become a
Paratrooper in January and February of 1945 and Mess
Steward in 1947. Thatís it,
no Special Forces
training. He just cooked for all of the units he
was assigned to.
Brian N. Siddall
September 24, 2018