Reservist gets prison for lying about medals
By Ben Winslow
Deseret Morning News
Published: February 20, 2008
In the pictures, U.S. Army Reserve Maj. Anthony Angelo Calderone stands proud, sporting medals and bars for distinguished service and trainings in the Special Forces, for fighting in Afghanistan, Iraq and Somalia. The truth is, he never earned most of them.
"I don't know how to express how sorry I am about this," Calderone said as he was sentenced Tuesday in federal court in Salt Lake City to 5 months in prison.
He was ordered to surrender to federal authorities in April.
Calderone was indicted in March 2007 on charges of unauthorized wearing of military medals, official false statement and fraud. According to the indictment, Calderone wore numerous medals and badges he didn't earn, including a Special Forces tab and a coveted Silver Star â€” the third highest medal of valor in the military.
In personnel records, Calderone included the awards, decorations and listed tours of duty and military training that he never did, the indictment said. Federal prosecutors said Calderone marched with the medals on and told members of his Army Reserve Unit in Utah about his adventures overseas.
"Calderone continuously advised unit members that he had been with the Special Forces in Afghanistan in the 1980s training rebels to fight the Soviet Army," assistant U.S. attorney Rob Lund wrote in court papers. "Calderone also advised members of the unit that, as a member of the 19th Special Forces Group, he had fought in the battle of Mogadishu in Somalia with Task Force Ranger in October of 1993 for which he earned a Silver Star."
In reality, the 19th SFG said none of its members were in Afghanistan before 2002, no member was at the battle of Mogadishu, and no member has ever received the Silver Star.