UPDATE: Texas elector Chris Suprun disputes claims of 9/11 ‘stolen valor’

tx-chris-suprun-4

Watch WFAA-TV story

UPDATE 3:18 p.m. ET

Chris Suprun disputes the claims of WFAA-TV (below) and others that he was not at the Pentagon on September 11, 2001. His response came in answer to a question on a Reddit AMA today (Friday):

You’re right, I wasn’t in New York on 9-11. I was a part of the response to the Pentagon attacks, as a volunteer member of the Dale City fire department in northern Virginia. That story exhibits a reckless disregard for the truth. I never claimed to be a first responder on 9-11 with the Manassas Park Fire Dept. I was a volunteer firefighter at the time for the Dale City Fire Dept when I responded to the attacks at the Pentagon. Later, I was hired by the City of Manassas Park. We’ve corrected the record with the journalist who wrote that story, and if he has any integrity, he’ll reveal his anonymous sources and let everyone have open debate. I know where I was on that tragic day.

It’s unclear why WFAA-TV’s Jason Whitely focused on Suprun’s time at Manassas Park Fire and Rescue that came after 9/11 other than Suprun has worn what appears to be a Manassas Park uniform during various appearances related to 9/11 (see video below).

STATter911.com still has not heard any official word from Dale City VFD.

PREVIOUSLY

WFAA-TV’s Jason Whitely has a story about Chris Suprun. Suprun is the Republican elector from Texas says he will not vote for Donald Trump. It focuses on Suprun saying, for many years, that he responded to the attacks of 9/11 as a firefighter or paramedic. The story interviews an unidentified person who claims to know Suprun and says this is a case of “stolen valor.”

Reading the many stories written about Chris Suprun in recent weeks, or even looking at much older articles, most don’t specifically address what Suprun’s role was on 9/11 other than to say he was among the “first responders.” There are a small number of articles that make a connection between Suprun and FDNY on 9/11 (and here), but it’s unclear if that’s an assumption by reporters or something coming directly from Suprun (attribution on all of them is vague).

Whitely’s report focuses on an item in Suprun’s resume that indicates he was employed as a paramedic by the Manassas Park (VA) Fire and Rescue Department in October of 2001, after the attacks. What isn’t in Whitely’s story is information from a September 12, 2012 column by Daniel Rubin of the Philadelphia Inquirer. The column focuses on Suprun’s work with his Never Forget Foundation and a talk Suprun gave to students in Philly on the 11th anniversary of the attacks.

This column is very specific about the department Suprun says he was with on September 11, 2001 and gives Suprun’s details of his role that day. It says that Suprun responded to the Pentagon as a volunteer with Dale City Volunteer Fire Department (Prince William County, VA). STATter911.com has reached out to the leadership at Dale City VFD for verification and will pass along any information provided. STATter911.com has also reached out to Chris Suprun for a response.

Daniel Rubin, Philadelphia Inquirer (Here’s a second article from 2014 that mentions Suprun and Dale City VFD):

He was 27, a volunteer paramedic at the Dale City fire company in Northern Virginia, and he was teaching emergency medical response at George Washington University.

When his beeper sounded after the first jet struck in Manhattan, he drove with a buddy to the fire station, where he always kept a fresh uniform.

As they dressed, preparing to drive to New York, they watched a TV report from the Pentagon, where a third jet had just smashed into the 30-acre building.

They roared up I-395 toward the thick, black smoke, which they could see from five miles away.

“It’s not like the movies,” he said. “People weren’t screaming. But you could smell burning Jet A [fuel], burning paper, burning material. . . .”

He and his partner were put to immediate use. In a parking lot, they administered basic first aid until 6 that night, then were deployed to a recreation center, where they treated the first responders for six hours more.

Jason Whitely, WFAA-TV:

The Republican elector who has gotten national attention for refusing to vote for Donald Trump at the Electoral College on Dec. 19 was apparently not a first responder on September 11, 2001 as he has stated for years and has a questionable career history, according to an investigation by WFAA.

Chris Suprun, 42, portrays himself as a heroic firefighter who was among the first on the scene after the third plane flew into the Pentagon on 9/11.

tx-chris-suprun-3

Never Forget Foundation

In a heavily-publicized editorial this month for the New York Times, Suprun stated that as a member of the Electoral College he will not cast his ballot for Trump because the president-elect “shows daily he is not qualified for the office.”

Suprun, a Dallas resident for more than a decade, even used his résumé to establish credibility in the Times piece, writing in the second paragraph: “Fifteen years ago, as a firefighter, I was part of the response to the Sept. 11 attacks against our nation.”

He has founded a nonprofit called Never Forget and state records show he is a licensed paramedic — but much of the rest of résumé, publicly available on LinkedIn, is questionable.

In addition, on at least two occasions over the last couple years at crowded Major League Baseball games, Suprun has been introduced as a 9/11 veteran before throwing out first pitches.

Read entire story