Questions Raised Over Nonprofit Saved in America’s Social Media Appeals to Navy SEALs

Navy SEALs training
Navy SEALs train off Coronado in 2014. Navy photo

Navy SEALs are noted for their courage under fire and their ability to pull off difficult missions.  That’s the reason why five years ago a number of retired SEALS felt they were qualified to rescue human trafficking victims and were recruited by Saved in America, a San Diego County-based group.

Saved in America became an instant media favorite, receiving regular coverage both nationally and locally. They use a variety of online platforms, including LinkedIn, to raise funds and report successes.

Just this week, Saved in America posted on its LinkedIn page an announcement about the retirement of one of its leaders — a former Navy SEAL. The post reported that “Master Chief Special Warfare Operator (SEAL) Kirby D. Horrell, the last active duty SEAL to have served in combat operations during the Vietnam War, retired during a ceremony at Coronado, Ca., Aug. 14.”

LinkedIn post mentioning Kirby D. Horrell
A screenshot of the LinkedIn post mentioning Kirby D. Horrell that appeared earlier this week.

A retired Navy SEAL who was formerly with Saved in America alerted me to the posting. He pointed out that Aug. 14 fell on a weekend and such retirement celebrations don’t take place on a weekends.  

When Brian O’Rourke, the media relations officer for Navy Region Southwest, was asked if there had been any retirement ceremonies last weekend honoring a Navy SEAL, he took a look at the LinkedIn post, which reposted an article announcing the retirement.

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