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Old 09-01-2011, 06:51 PM   #1
RobinW
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Default Military Man at Danny Casolaro's Funeral

There are numerous threads in this forum debating whether or not Danny Casolaro was murdered or committed suicide (and for the record, I've never believed he wasn't murdered), but one topic I don't see discussed too often is what I consider to be the most bizarre aspect of the case. At Casolaro's funeral, an African-American man in a military uniform showed up, put a medal on Casolaro's casket and saluted before walking away. After the funeral, Danny's family and friends discussed this and realized that none of them had the slightest idea who this guy was. What's even stranger is that Casolaro never actually served in the military, so the gesture of placing a medal on his casket doesn't make much sense.

I guess the obvious answer to this mystery is that the military man was a confidential informant on the "Octopus" story that Casolaro was working on, and that this gesture was his way of paying respect to Danny dying in the line of duty while trying to do the right thing. His actions resemble that of a man who's bothered by his conscience. However, if this guy was secretly working with Casolaro trying to uncover the conspiracy, he's taking a huge risk by coming to the funeral in front of all those people when he could have easily came by to leave the medal on the grave when no one else was around. Not to mention that some of the attendees at the funeral were probably from the journalism community and would be more prone to asking questions about him. I also read that he showed up in a limousine and had that unidentified man with him who looked like a Secret Service agent, so he wasn't exactly inconspicuous.

I also wonder what happened to the medal. Since no one realized the weirdness of the situation until after the funeral, I'm assuming it was buried with the casket, but I wonder if anyone's ever tried to dig it up to find out what kind of medal it was or possibly test it for DNA and fingerprints. Regardless of whether you think Casolaro was murdered or committed suicide, the appearance of the military man is just a very baffling moment.

Of course, my cynical side wonders if this guy just simply showed up at the wrong funeral by mistake . Any theories?
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Old 09-01-2011, 09:17 PM   #2
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Its definitilely not an everyday thing for a military man to show up in a limousine at a funeral of a civillian and salute them with a medal.

I do agree that this was someone who was praising Cassalero's efforts to do the right thing and was definitely showing respect for some sort of endeavor he was undertaking.

But who it was and what his connection to the case is, we can only speculate.
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Old 09-02-2011, 10:21 AM   #3
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I think he was Colin Powell and ended up at the wrong service.
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Old 09-02-2011, 12:37 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by justins5256
I think he was Colin Powell and ended up at the wrong service.

I thought about that theory before, especially since the actor in the re-enactment resembles Powell. However, Powell was Chairman of the Joint Chiefs and a very well-known public figure at that time, so I'm sure someone would have recognized him. Danny's friend interviewed in the UM segment, Ann Klenk, was a CNBC producer, so I'm sure she would known Colin Powell if she saw him.

I am leaning towards the theory that the millitary man simply showed up at the wrong service. Even though Casolaro's investigation was looking at corruption in many branches of the government, I don't believe the military had any relevance to the case at all.
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Old 09-02-2011, 01:10 PM   #5
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Wouldn't the high ranking military man have noticed the lack of a flag folded and presented to next of kin? Or the lack of a bugler? There are other branches of government that attain symbolic military ranks and there are a number of medals given to private citizens.

It could also be an example of a military man given one of his personal medals to someone as a tribute. Perhaps it was his own purple heart.
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Old 09-02-2011, 01:15 PM   #6
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I definitely have always thought that the military man was simply at the wrong funeral. It just adds to the whole "mysticism" of the conspiracy involving the "Octopus" to assume he was their to pay his respects to Danny because he was an informant, which is probably why UM decided to use it. I understand that at a funeral it's a time for someone's loved ones to grieve and remember their recently deceased relative, but if you truely believed your brother was involved in exposing some grand government conspiracy, wouldn't you be the least bit curious who this military man was and what his business was at the funeral? IIRC, not one person question this man who put the medal on the casket, nor did anyone look at the medal.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:40 PM   #7
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I honestly thought you all were joking about the wrong funeral. I've never heard of anyone showing up at the wrong funeral. I mean I'm sure its happened but this guy hardly sounded like the type who would make a bungling mistake like that, he had to have some idea who he was honoring and where the funeral would be, and who the family members would be at the funeral.

And obviously someone would have recognized Colin Powell.

The fact that no one questioned him is not that unusual either. Grieving family members being that they are preoccupied with the death of a loved on are not usually in a state where they will be in an investigative mode.

If Danny Cassolero was into a lot of stuff there is no telling who that might have been, but I highly doubt he was just someone there by mistake, he hardly sounded like the type who wouldn't know whose funeral he was at.
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Old 09-02-2011, 08:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XCalibur
I honestly thought you all were joking about the wrong funeral. I've never heard of anyone showing up at the wrong funeral. I mean I'm sure its happened but this guy hardly sounded like the type who would make a bungling mistake like that, he had to have some idea who he was honoring and where the funeral would be, and who the family members would be at the funeral.

I think the "showing up at the wrong funeral" might be plausible if there was another funeral going on at that particular cemetery at the same time, or there was another one scheduled there at some point that day. I don't know if it's a common practice for the military to send out a representative to attend the funerals of deceased soldiers in order to honour them by doing something like placing a medal on their casket, even though said representative may not have known the soldier personally.

Quote:
Originally Posted by XCalibur
The fact that no one questioned him is not that unusual either. Grieving family members being that they are preoccupied with the death of a loved on are not usually in a state where they will be in an investigative mode.

I agree, I didn't find that unusual. I'm sure virtually everyone was suspicious of the military man, but they probably assumed that other people there would know who he was, and I doubt anyone wanted to be the one who might appear disrespectful by questioning the man or examining the medal just as Danny was about to be buried. Even if the military man simply did go to the wrong funeral, it is pretty strange behaviour to leave without even offering condolences or interacting with anyone, which is why I always had the impression that he didn't want the attention and had something to hide.
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Old 09-03-2011, 09:51 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobinW
I agree, I didn't find that unusual. I'm sure virtually everyone was suspicious of the military man, but they probably assumed that other people there would know who he was, and I doubt anyone wanted to be the one who might appear disrespectful by questioning the man or examining the medal just as Danny was about to be buried. Even if the military man simply did go to the wrong funeral, it is pretty strange behaviour to leave without even offering condolences or interacting with anyone, which is why I always had the impression that he didn't want the attention and had something to hide.

I'm sorry, but if you thought your loved one was murdered because he was uncovering a government conspiracy, and you saw a military man that no one recognized show up at his funeral, the very least someone could have done was ask him who he was. Especially after he placed the medal on the casket. His family was grieving his death, so yeah they may not be too concerned with investigating but Danny had several journalist friends at his funeral, and I just find it odd that not one of them thought it would be prudent to question him. Maybe it's just because I watch too much UM, but I would have wanted to question the guy or at least go back and check out the medal.
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Old 09-03-2011, 11:45 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheCars1986
I'm sorry, but if you thought your loved one was murdered because he was uncovering a government conspiracy, and you saw a military man that no one recognized show up at his funeral, the very least someone could have done was ask him who he was. Especially after he placed the medal on the casket. His family was grieving his death, so yeah they may not be too concerned with investigating but Danny had several journalist friends at his funeral, and I just find it odd that not one of them thought it would be prudent to question him. Maybe it's just because I watch too much UM, but I would have wanted to question the guy or at least go back and check out the medal.

I think its entirely possible they did look at the medal, but there might not have been anything distinctive about it to tell anyone.
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Old 09-18-2011, 11:31 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheCars1986
I'm sorry, but if you thought your loved one was murdered because he was uncovering a government conspiracy, and you saw a military man that no one recognized show up at his funeral, the very least someone could have done was ask him who he was. Especially after he placed the medal on the casket. His family was grieving his death, so yeah they may not be too concerned with investigating but Danny had several journalist friends at his funeral, and I just find it odd that not one of them thought it would be prudent to question him. Maybe it's just because I watch too much UM, but I would have wanted to question the guy or at least go back and check out the medal.

Agreed. Maybe the man made a speedy entry and exit. I can see how it would be awkward for a grieving family member to go up to someone in uniform, demanding "Who are you?" Maybe they were just in disbelief until the man left.
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Old 03-30-2016, 12:05 AM   #12
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Just stumbled on this message board? Has this "mystery" been solved?
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Old 03-30-2016, 11:23 AM   #13
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Nope. Military man still unidentified. Danny's cause of death still hotly disputed.
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Old 03-30-2016, 09:57 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BennettMarco
Just stumbled on this message board? Has this "mystery" been solved?

Yep. A giant octopus killed him.
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Old 03-31-2016, 05:50 PM   #15
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I don't know why but I always found the military man unbelievable. Either exaggerated or completely a myth. I guess it is possible it happened. We seem to be all over the place with this one. A bit stereotypical to say the least but I love stereotypes (in its proper placement) for the simple fact that it is amusing. No disrespect to General Powell or the late Danny cassalaro.

I could see the possibility that the gentleman was a personal friend of Danny but I doubt a personal friend would show up in a limo wearing his service uniform. It also would be strange for a military member to do that on his own. Usually they only attend military or veteran funerals in uniform which I don't believe Danny was a vet. I wonder if this was just one of those things where someone said a military guy came to the funeral and it turned into something more elaborate when UM produced the segment....
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