Emmanuel Dockter Says He’s Not Retired U.S. Military; His Mailer Claims He Is

Printed from: https://newbostonpost.com/2022/11/07/emmanuel-dockter-says-hes-not-retired-u-s-military-his-mailer-claims-he-is/

A Democratic candidate for state representative on the South Shore’s Fifth Plymouth District who is running against a retired U.S. Army officer sent out a mailer in the spring claiming to be a retired U.S. Marine.

But is it true?

The mailer that former Hanover selectman Emmanuel Dockter, 43, sent out to Rockland residents said this:

“Emmanuel Dockter is a former Selectman, retired US Marine, and small business owner raising his family in Hanover. He is running for State Representative to give residents of Rockland and each town in our district the effective and responsive leadership we deserve.”

Here is a photograph of the mailer:

Although Dockter served as a U.S. Marine, by definition, he would not be considered a retired U.S. Marine — and he told NewBostonPost that he does not consider himself a retired U.S. Marine. 

Initially, Dockter told NewBostonPost in an email message that he was unaware of the mailer and asked to see a picture of it. However, after NewBostonPost sent him the picture, he did not respond on Saturday or Sunday.

“I’m not aware of any mailer from my campaign describing myself as retired military,” Dockter wrote. “I do not refer to myself as retired and I am not retired. Can you send me a copy of what you are referring to?”

Outside of this mailer, Dockter does not refer to himself as a retired U.S. Marine; he uses the term Marine Veteran on his campaign web site and Twitter account

Dockter was a U.S. Marine for three years, according to his LinkedIn page. Dockter, who was born in 1979, became a Marine in 1997. He left the Marines in 2000, which means he served for three years. He was honorably discharged after three years of service, according to his LinkedIn page. 

However, members of the United States military generally have to serve 20 years before they are eligible to retire, according to Veterans Authority (a nongovernmental organization).

“Those who qualify for retirement by honorably serving at least 20 years of military service qualify for retirement pay whereas those that are discharged short of 20 years do not,” Veterans Authority says. “There is no vesting with the military retirement program as with civilian retirement programs.”

Those who leave a branch of the military before 20 years can and usually do receive an honorable discharge, but the government typically does not allow military members to retire before 20 years.

Dockter is running for state representative against incumbent David DeCoste (R-Norwell), who is, by the government’s definition, a retired U.S. Army officer.

DeCoste served in the U.S. Army for 22 years of active duty from 1987 to 2009, and achieved the rank of major, according to his campaign web site. He served tours in Iraq, Kuwait, Croatia, Haiti, and South Korea. He was a paratrooper who deployed in the Gulf War and served as an officer in the 82nd Airborne Division. 

When asked about Dockter’s mailer, DeCoste said he would not comment on it.

“On this one, I’d simply say I can only speak to my own record in the Army and I am very grateful I was able to serve,” DeCoste told NewBostonPost in an email message.

This is the second time that Dockter and DeCoste have run against each other. In 2020, DeCoste beat Dockter, 51 percent to 49 percent.

Due to redistricting, the Fifth Plymouth District looks different from how it did the last time DeCoste and Dockter squared off.

Before redistricting, the district included the towns of Hanover, Rockland, and Norwell.

Now, the Fifth Plymouth District includes:  Hanover, Hanson (Precinct 1), Norwell (Precincts 1, 2), and Rockland.


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