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Mystery of WW2 vet who stole child's identity

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  • Mystery of WW2 vet who stole child's identity

    Read of the case of Joe Chandler, a deceased World War II veteran who was found after his death to have stolen the name and birthdate of an eight-year-old who died in a car crash in 1945. Strange story, as no one knows why Robert Nichols felt it necessary to change his identity.

    https://www-m.cnn.com/2018/06/22/us/...rnd/index.html
    Pat D. https://forum.casebook.org/core/imag...rt/reading.gif
    ---------------
    Von Konigswald: Jack the Ripper plays shuffleboard. -- Happy Birthday, Wanda June by Kurt Vonnegut, c.1970.
    ---------------

  • #2
    Originally posted by Pcdunn View Post
    Read of the case of Joe Chandler, a deceased World War II veteran who was found after his death to have stolen the name and birthdate of an eight-year-old who died in a car crash in 1945. Strange story, as no one knows why Robert Nichols felt it necessary to change his identity.

    https://www-m.cnn.com/2018/06/22/us/...rnd/index.html
    Did he need o change his age to join up for the war?
    G U T

    There are two ways to be fooled, one is to believe what isn't true, the other is to refuse to believe that which is true.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Pcdunn View Post
      Read of the case of Joe Chandler, a deceased World War II veteran who was found after his death to have stolen the name and birthdate of an eight-year-old who died in a car crash in 1945. Strange story, as no one knows why Robert Nichols felt it necessary to change his identity.

      https://www-m.cnn.com/2018/06/22/us/...rnd/index.html
      That’s intriguing Pat. You can’t help thinking “what had he done that he needed to change identities and stay on the run?”

      Thanks for posting it and let us know if you hear of any developments
      Regards

      Herlock






      "There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact!"

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      • #4
        Originally posted by GUT View Post
        Did he need o change his age to join up for the war?
        He would have, I suspect, chosen someone more than eight years old in that case.
        - Ginger

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Ginger View Post
          He would have, I suspect, chosen someone more than eight years old in that case.
          But both were born the same year +/-1, which rules out my first thoughts.

          So just hiding from something someone.
          G U T

          There are two ways to be fooled, one is to believe what isn't true, the other is to refuse to believe that which is true.

          Comment


          • #6
            I think he was in the military under his own name. After he died, they couldn't find any military record in the name of Chandler (which was the identity he borrowed in 1978, I think), and later discovered he must have borrowed the dead boy's name and birthday.

            But until they did some forensic DNA testing twenty years later, they didn't know he was really Robert Nichols.

            He had abandoned his family, so I guess he didn't want to be tracked down, but some of his comments about people "getting close" are strange. Paranoid? Witness protection? Secret enemy spy?

            We are unlikely to ever know.
            Pat D. https://forum.casebook.org/core/imag...rt/reading.gif
            ---------------
            Von Konigswald: Jack the Ripper plays shuffleboard. -- Happy Birthday, Wanda June by Kurt Vonnegut, c.1970.
            ---------------

            Comment


            • #7
              I have no reason to suppose that the reason Nichols / Chandler did so is the same but the way in which a professional assassin operating in the early 1960s obtains and then uses the identity of a dead child is fascinatingly covered in Frederick Forsyth's novel 'The Day of the Jackal', later made into a film of the same title directed by Fred Zinnemann and starring Edward Fox.

              Both novel and film are highly recommended.

              Best regards,

              OneRound

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              • #8
                ....and if The Jackal wasn't Charles Calthrop, then who the hell was he?

                I thought the movie was much better than the book, but that's just my opinion.

                Graham
                We are suffering from a plethora of surmise, conjecture and hypothesis. - Sherlock Holmes, The Adventure Of Silver Blaze

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                • #9
                  The Day of the Jackal was my first thought too, but it wasn't published until 1971, well after this chap pulled the same trick.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Joshua Rogan View Post
                    The Day of the Jackal was my first thought too, but it wasn't published until 1971, well after this chap pulled the same trick.
                    I don't know. He left his family in 1964, but acquired the death certificate in 1978, so he might very well have read the novel "The Day of the Jackal" in the early Seventies.
                    Pat D. https://forum.casebook.org/core/imag...rt/reading.gif
                    ---------------
                    Von Konigswald: Jack the Ripper plays shuffleboard. -- Happy Birthday, Wanda June by Kurt Vonnegut, c.1970.
                    ---------------

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Pcdunn View Post
                      I don't know. He left his family in 1964, but acquired the death certificate in 1978, so he might very well have read the novel "The Day of the Jackal" in the early Seventies.
                      Ah, well spotted. In that case he could have read the book several times and still had time to watch the film.

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