Jeffrey R. Staab/CBS
Alex Heigl
February 05, 2015 12:00 PM

NBC Nightly News host Brian Williams has come under metaphorical fire this week for a story he told David Letterman in 2013 about coming under actual fire while embedded with soldiers serving in Iraq in 2003.

Williams initially claimed that he was on board a Chinook helicopter that came under enemy fire and went down. He repeated the story during a recent segment that focused on Tim Terpak, a now-retired Army Sgt. Maj. who was present in the rescue team that came to the aid of Williams and others.

The story was posted on Facebook, at which point Lance Reynolds, the flight engineer on the helicopter wrote to Williams, saying, “Sorry dude, I don’t remember you being on my aircraft.”

Another flight engineer, Sgt. 1st Class Joseph Miller, thanked Reynolds, later adding, “I’ve been calling him out on this for a long time with no response. He was actually on my aircraft and we came in behind you about 30-45 minutes later.”

Williams apologized for the fabrication Thursday. “I made a mistake in recalling the events of 12 years ago,” he wrote, blaming “the fog of memory over 12 years.” “Nobody’s trying to steal anyone’s valor,” he added.

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