An army hero who claims to have won the Military Medal has been unmasked as a fraud who bought his medals in a shop.
Bob Campbell, a standard bearer for the Parachute Regiment Association, claimed he was awarded a Falklands campaign medal for his bravery in fighting Argentinian soldiers in hand-to-hand combat.
However, it has emerged that Campbell, who did serve in the regular Army for five years and worked on and off with the Territorial Army for 20 years, was never awarded the Military Medal and had never fought in the Falklands War.
The 59-year-old, who works as an ambulance driver, admitted to the Daily Record that he bought the Military Medal and the South Atlantic medal at a specialist shop in London.
When asked why he did it, he said: “I don’t know, it was stupid. All I can do is apologise.”
Campbell joined Aberdeen Parachute Regiment Association soon after it was formed in 2001 and his name is listed on their website as Bob Campbell MM to recognise his achievement.
The regiment's chairman Bob Crocker told STV: “I cannot condone his actions but we do acknowledge what he did for the association - he did a lot of extremely good charity work - and we're immensely sad for him.
"He was a stalwart but what he did was wrong and he's now effectively finished with our association.
"I talked to him yesterday and he is now a broken man. He's been living a lie for too long and should have come clean.”
Alistair Black, chairman of the Banchory branch of The Royal British Legion, said: “Medals are earned, whether through long service or blood, sweat and tears so to falsify that is completely wrong.
“I was in the army for 23 years and I haven’t heard of somebody doing this before and I can’t understand why anyone would.
“If you have done the job then you are quite right to wear the medals with pride. If you haven’t it is lying and to lie about earning a medal through fighting in hand-to-hand combat is despicable in my opinion.”
Mr Campbell carried the Paras standard at the Armistice Day parade in Aberdeen last November when he was interviewed by STV.
He said: "I’m a Falklands veteran and I think it’s very important for people to have a chance to remember those who were killed serving their country. I never miss it, even if I have to take a day off work.
"It’s also great for the families of those who are currently serving in places like Afghanistan to show how much people appreciate the job they are doing."
Mr Campbell was unavailable for comment when contacted by STV on Wednesday.