Does the Veterans Administration ever help veterans?

A World War II combat veteran was denied benefits by the Veterans Administration. The VA claims they do not have enough proof of his service:

When 90-year-old Emil Limpert sought VA benefits to help pay for assisted living costs, he was told there was no record of his service. “I must be an unknown soldier, I guess,” said Limpert.

Fox News has the heartbreaking story:

Fox 2 Now in St. Louis reports that after Emil Limpert submitted an application for benefits to the Department of Veterans Affairs he was told he needed to provide more proof that he was in the military.

“I get this letter that says we can’t accept it because we’ve got no record of you being in the service,” he told the station. “I guess I’m the unknown soldier.”

He was wounded in a foxhole in the Philippines in 1944.

“There were four guys in there, and two guys got killed,” he told the station. “And then the other guy, he got his leg… Oh, hell. I guess he lost his leg. It was slit in four places where a grenade hit between us and I got one in my leg.”

Limpert said he waited until now to apply for benefits because he is down to nothing.

He and his wife live in an assisted-living facility outside St. Louis.

“We got rid of our car, we got rid of our house,” he said. “I got rid of money I had in bonds and stocks and now I need help.”

His application included plenty of documentation, including discharge papers, the names of his foxhole pals and the X-ray of his wounded leg. The proof also included his Purple Heart and two Bronze Stars he received in the Pacific.

Fox 2 reported the VA letter asks Limpert to submit affidavits from fellow service members, most of whom are dead, or the location of the hospital where he was originally treated.

“There ain’t no hospital,” he told the station. “We were in the jungles.”

The station reported that Limpert’s military records were apparently among the millions destroyed in a massive fire in Overland, Missouri, in 1973.

The station also reported that it sought comment from the VA in Washington without success.

Embroiled in scandal, mishandling like Limpert’s case magnify the Veterans Administration’s growing list of ineptitudes.

Last year, $142 million in bonuses were awarded to VA employees despite the wait time for veterans needing assistance increasing more than 50%.

Democratic presidential frontrunner, Hillary Clinton, contended the VA scandal was not, “as widespread as it was made out to be.”

Follow Kemberlee on Twitter @kemberleekaye


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