While there are VA outpatient clinics in East Texas, local veterans have to go to Dallas or Shreveport for VA hospital services. (Source: KLTV staff)
LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) -
With the Veterans Administration facing allegations of misconduct, falsifying records and cover-ups, East Texas veterans are speaking out on what they've long known: the difficult struggle that many veterans have with getting the simplest of VA health care.
For some Longview veterans, news of the VA scandal is not surprising.
"Where are all these bleeding hearts now? Where the hell are they? I'm not shocked by it, I'm not surprised by it," said retired Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant Dan Whyte.
In runs back and forth to the Shreveport VA, they all became familiar with long waits,
Going back to the Walter Reed Hospital debacle and beyond, VA care has been viewed as a red tape nightmare by many.
"It’s a disgrace! Once again you send them in harm’s way, you come back, they should take care of you period. It’s like they don't really care," Whyte says.
Almost from its inception, veterans have struggled with the VA, sometimes for decades, to get the benefits they deserve.
Army veteran Ron Frey was wounded twice in Vietnam, and struggled for a decade to get disability.
"I hobble everywhere I go. A bullet in one leg and shrapnel in the other and they gave me ten percent disability so I filed an appeal. Now it’s 2014 , it’s been 12 years. I'm still waiting," he says.
Vietnam veteran Rick Homer fought years to get help with his hearing.
"It took me 18 years just to get my hearing aids," Homer says.
"Same things been going on for years, it is disgraceful, they should have had a whistle blower years ago," Frey says.
They don't have much faith in the president’s address of the problem.
"We write a blank check when we go over there up to and including giving our life, we come back and we're ignored," says Frey.
"They've got the mentality of a bumper sticker. Denied and reject , denied and reject," Whyte says.
While there are VA outpatient clinics in East Texas, local veterans have to go to Dallas or Shreveport for VA hospital services.
Tuesday, August 19 2014 4:10 PM EDT2014-08-19 20:10:07 GMT
The police chief for Gulf Shores along Alabama's coast is weighing-in on the actions of the law enforcement commander in charge of Ferguson, Missouri's in the wake of an escalating crisis brought on byMore >>
Gulf Shores Police Chief Ed Delmore wrote a blistering open letter to Captain Ronald S. Johnson, who was given command of law enforcement operations following days of looting and rioting in the city.More >>
Friday, August 22 2014 3:11 PM EDT2014-08-22 19:11:37 GMT
A 22-year-old woman and a 4-month-old baby are recovering in the hospital after being struck on the sidewalk in a hit-skip accident. The driver is in custody, but the passenger remains on the run. More >>
A 22-year-old woman and a 4-month-old baby are recovering in the hospital after being struck on the sidewalk by a driver who didn't stop at the scene of the accident. The driver is in custody, but the passenger remains on the run. More >>
A fisherman off the coast of Bonita Springs, Florida thinks he has a pretty nice catch. As he reels in a four-foot shark, his catch is stolen by an even bigger fish. A massive grouper pulls the sharkMore >>
A massive grouper steals a four-foot shark from a fisherman's line off the coast of Florida.More >>