L. Ron Hubbard
L. Ron Hubbard (1911–1986) began as an author of science fiction, speculative fiction, and Dianetics, then became even better known as the founder of the Church of Scientology, for which he wrote many thousands of pages of Scientology books and documents, some of which were for public consumption and others for private use by Scientologists only. In his early days, he wrote at least 153 stories in various genres of pulp fiction in the 1930s and '40s including westerns and pirates.
Born to Ledora May and Harry Ross Hubbard in Tilden, Nebraska. At an early age, Hubbard claimed to have been inducted into the Blackfoot Indian tribe, learning from "Old Tom", teaching him many things about their tribal practices, and then made a blood brother. Historians dispute this claim, but the Church includes it in their biographies of Hubbard.
Hubbard attended George Washington University in 1930, but does not do well in his studies. Later, he co-authored a book called All About Radiation, but while at university, Hubbard failed his courses on nuclear physics. The Church of Scientology have claimed that Hubbard was a pioneer in the study of nuclear physics.
Hubbard also claims to have been a war hero in World War II, serving in the U.S. Navy. During this time, Hubbard and the Church claim, Hubbard commanded a number of ships on anti-submarine missions in the north Atlantic and the Pacific. In fact, Hubbard never saw combat, but did attempt to attack a magnetic anomaly off the coast of Oregon, and started firing against unpopulated islands off the coast of Mexico. He was reprimanded often and relieved of his command three times. Hubbard claims that he developed many of the ideas which would later become foundational for Dianetics and Scientology while recovering from his non-existent combat wounds. He claimed to have received twenty-six medals for his war service, but actually received four. The Church have also published an alleged forgery of Hubbard's Navy Notice of Separation, where a non-existent Lieutenant Commander named Howard D. Thompson claimed Hubbard had served upon the USS Mist (which did not serve in WW2), the USS Howland (no such vessel exists), and to have received medals from the British and Dutch militaries.
Ronald DeWolf, Hubbard's son, testified that Hubbard's claims about his academic achievements and his military service were false in the case of La Venda Van Schiack et al. v. Church of Scientology of California et al. in the U.S. District Court in Massachusetts.