Fallen soldier's family asks to have Facebook page taken down
Cape Cod Times, Hyannis, Mass.
SAGAMORE BEACH, Mass. — When Lisa Pucino-Haglof heard from a friend that someone claiming to be her brother Matthew Pucino — a Green Beret who died in Afghanistan in 2009 — tried to "friend" him on Facebook, she was disgusted.
But this isn't the first time impostors have used her brother's likeness on social networking sites, she said.
"His pictures and name were used on a dating site before, and we had that taken down," said Pucino-Haglof, 34, of Sagamore Beach. "I don't understand why someone would want to do this."
Army Staff Sgt. Matthew Pucino, 34, was killed on Nov. 23, 2009. He was on his third tour of duty in Afghanistan when the vehicle he was in was hit by an improvised explosive device.
The Facebook page for the nonprofit group named after him, the SSG Matthew A. Pucino Memorial Foundation Ltd., has been supportive in the family's effort to get the false page taken down.
But Pucino-Haglof is not satisfied with the way Facebook has handled things.
"This is not rocket science," she said of how simple it would be to confirm that an imposter is at work. "It would take two minutes."
She worries that others could be posing as fallen veterans, using their likeness and name for personal gain. "Unless someone notifies you, you could miss it," she said of false profiles.
Pucino-Haglof said she and many of the nearly 1,000 people who have "liked" the Pucino foundation page have sent complaints to Facebook, but have heard nothing back.
"They have measures. They have the ability to figure this out quickly," she said of Facebook. "They should show respect for him."
Calling the ordeal "such a betrayal," Pucino-Haglof just wants peace for her brother.
"He's a hero. He fought and died for this country. Let him rest in peace."