“All told,” Kyle, who is widely referred to as the deadliest sniper in US military history, wrote in his book, “I would end my career as a SEAL with two Silver Stars and five Bronze [Stars], all for valor.”
Interestingly, his discharge papers reveal a different number than both Kyle’s book claims and Navy findings, documenting two Silver and six Bronze stars. The Navy has stated that clerical errors on discharge paperwork are common.
“The form DD214 is generated locally at the command where the service member is separated,” Cullen James, a spokesman for US Navy Personnel Command, told the Intercept in May. “Although the information on the DD214 should match the official records, the process involves people and inevitably some errors may occur.”
Kyle was murdered in 2013 by former Marine Eddie Ray Routh, who was suffering from post-traumatic stress syndrome. Routh is currently serving life in prison without the possibility of parole for Kyle’s death.
Kyle’s widow has not commented on the demotion of her late husband’s medal count.