Eighth Aerial Port Squadron, USAF - Detachments & Operating Locations in Vietnam


David Perelman
Was never a member of the 8th APS Mobility Section

His false claims to have been a member of the MOB - and of having been wounded on a mobility mission - are false and he is now paying the price for his lie.

Apparently, he served for a short time with the 8th APS at Tan Son Nhut but otherwise fabricated his own story of Vietnam.

He has been convicted of lying about his Vietnam service and of collecting underserved benefits from the VA.

From an article in the Las Vegas Review-Journal:

Before receiving a one-year prison sentence Wednesday, December 1, 2010, David M. Perelman said that he was "deeply sorry" for his actions, which included fraudulently obtaining a Purple Heart and about $180,000 in disability benefits.

David Perelman claimed to have served with the 8th APS in 1971 - as things were 'winding down' - and fewer people had to serve more functions. He told us that his time included duty on the ramp at TSN, Hazmat and Ammo Dump, as well as Mobilities in the 8th APS AO. In October of 1971, he reports being wounded and had received the purple Heart Citation shown below (based upon false information). He also sent in some other photos of his time in Vietnam.

However, no one has ever corroborated his claims and in fact, he has been convicted of lying about them and defrauding the VA.

Update 12/2/2010 -

Pereleman was convicted of lying about his Vietnam service.  Article in Las Vegas Review-Journal


UPDATE 11/1/2010:
As it turns out, David Perleman's claim that he had served with the 8th Mob was a lie. He never served with us. Nor did he ever receive wounds in Vietnam to justify a Purple Heart. Although he served for a number of years in his state's Purple Heart Association and collected Veterans' Benefits as a wounded combat veteran, it now appears that it was all a fraud. 

The closest he ever got to the MOB Team was to pass by our barracks at Tan Son Nhut.                    

UPDATE: 1/12/2010:

Since David first contacted us in 2004, some question has come up about whether he did indeed serve with Mobility Operations - or even for that matter, with 8th APS itself. Questions have arisen about his Vietnam experience and the Purple Heart which was awarded to him.

Since we do not have any verifiable or corroborative information on David's service - or the wounds referred to in the Purple Heart award shown below, we do not wish to take sides on this issue, but we do feel that it is important to acknowledge our lack such verifiable information about David's service. No one on our forum has come forward to support or deny his claims. No one has acknowledged any contact with David at any time.

Meanwhile, most of us have found buddies that we served with on various missions throughout Vietnam and many of us also have found copies of travel orders which document our missions and service. David has not submitted any such documentation - beyond the Purple Heart award shown below - which is now in question in a court case in his home state.

But. Lack of documentation on this site does not preclude the possibility that his story is true. We simply  cannot corroborate nor prove it to be true or false. Our Mobility missions were spread throughout the country - and areas of operation varied widely during 8th APS' time in Vietnam. Although during some years, the teams and team members were clearly defined, there were many missions that were carried out by irregular volunteers - 'members' who had primary duties elsewhere in 8th APS. That said, we must firmly establish our position that this web site can neither confirm nor deny that David served with 8th APS - at TSN or on Mobility Missions.

However - regarding the question of USAF Mobility team members serving in combat in Vietnam - that fact is beyond reproach, and although occassionally questioned, and surprising to some, our combat exposure and actions can be well documented from a variety of sources. Mobility team members went to work every day carrying loaded M-16s and wearing flak vests and helmets - and we needed and used them often.

We did indeed serve in some very dangerous areas of Vietnam, and many were awarded well-earned Bronze Stars for combat action. Many others were awarded purple Hearts for wounds suffered in combat. If an area was secure enough to drive a convoy to or a "Combat Emergency" had not been declared, we simply were not needed. Our missions were nearly all to "remote austere" jungle outposts and we certainly came under fire often enough to be considered "combat veterans" by any measure. There were only 21 permanent members of 8th APS Mobility Teams at one one time, (although our ranks did swell with aerialport volunteers as needed) and we were kept quite busy woking at some dangerous remote, commonly dirt airfields throughout Vietnam.

At least one MOB Team member - Ssgt Webb Layton - was killed while on a mobility mission (to Budop) in 1969, and others were killed in action during other years of Aerialport Mobility  operations in Vietnam. Many were wounded - a half-dozen in just one day at Budop in 1969. In fact if the new Airman's Combat Medal had been available to USAF personnel in Vietnam, most of us who performed on Mobility missions in Vietnam would clearly qualify. (For more on the 8thMOB story, please visit our home page

There has been much behind-the-scenes conversation among concerned 8th MOB members who have become aware of David's difficulties and this update to David's page is a result of our continued effort to accurately document the service of 8th APS Moblity Team members during their times of service in Vietnam.

IF you have any information about David Perleman's service in Vietnam, please do contact the webmaster directly with any information you may have so that we can continue to accurately document the service of 8th APS Mobility Team members during their times in Vietnam.

Thank you
Alan Runfeldt
webmaster, 8thMOB.org

During the Country Music Awards of 2006, David MIS-represented the 8th APS - and USAF as a Purple Heart awardee of the Vietnam War. Along with him that day were members of the 5th Special Forces. We had always worked closely with them and David had used that relationship to further his goal of appearing to be n 8th MOB veteran.

"Yes, we were on the CMA last Tuesday. They wanted Purple Heart vets for this
song they did about the 173rd Airborne in 1965. So we came to represent all
wars. We gave them our names ranks, and which unit we were with. Most of the
7 guys were Army, a couple of Marines...and I was the only Air Force guy
there. They put it up on TV big as life... 8th APS........ I have it on
tape.... I will see if I can make a copy for you guys.. a couple of the
other MOB members emailed me too. I was PROUD to represent you guys.
Although I was nervous as hell during the show.. the Army guys were 5th
Special Forces...they are close friends of mine...and they remember the MOB
teams VERY well, and have a very high regard for us. That's a hell of a

Thanks, David and Welcome Home.

Note: November, 2009 -
It has come to our attention that David has encountered some difficulty documenting the events that lead to the awarding of the purple heart shown below. We have no facts at our disposal and have accepted his report at face value. If anyone recalls David or served with him in 8th APS, please contact us with any information you may have regarding his service in Vietnam and wounds he reports having received while on a mobility mission in October of 1971.

contact webmaster

Purple Heart Citation awarded to David Perelman in September of 1993 for wounds he reports having received while on a mobility mission in October of 1971

Ssgt David Perelman's Purple Heart Citation

8th APS home in 1971
 Barracks building #865 Tan Son Nhut AB, Vietnam

Apparently, this is as close to 'serving' with the 8th MOb as David ever came - he walked past our barracks and took a photo...

8th APS home Barracks - building #865 Tan Son Nhut AB, Vietnam