On Sunday October 8, Fox News ran a story about John Garofalo, a glass artist described on air as a Vietnam veteran and “highly decorated Navy SEAL” — unfortunately, that all turned out to be fake.
The network was forced to issue a lengthy correction of the entire piece Thursday, admitting that the story was bogus and they had been duped.
“Unfortunately, all of Garofalo’s claims turned out to be untrue. The fact is that he did not serve in Vietnam,” the network said in a statement. “He was never a U.S. Navy SEAL. Even though he showed us medals, Garofalo was not awarded two Purple Hearts or any of the other nearly two dozen commendations he claimed to have received, except for the National Defense Service Medal.”
The channel ended the post with an apology to viewers and “especially veterans and servicemen and women.”
A Fox News representative declined to comment on whether there would be any disciplinary measure taken or newsroom safeguards put in place to prevent similar mistakes in the future.
A subsequent correction was also presented on-air on Fox News, Friday.
The original piece, presented by reporter Bryan Llenas, painted Garofalo as a sympathetic uber-Trump patriot and glass artist who was coming out of semi-retirement to make a customized presidential seal for his hero.
Trump “woke something up in me. He’s for the people,” Garofalo told Llenas. “I have hope for him and I have hope for the country.”
At the end of the story, the channel even made an open appeal to the president to accept the gift.
“He’s just spectacular. God bless John Garofalo,” said host Eric Shawn, closing the piece. “We certainly hope the president is listening.”
With Fox News now regular viewing in 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue — he very well might have been.