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  1. #1
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    AZ-Homeless veteran denied benefits, but is given full military funeral

    Homeless veteran denied benefits, but is given full military funeral
    http://www.abc15.com/dpp/news/region...ingle101734361
    PHOENIX - A man who was living on the streets was given a full military funeral Thursday after a homeless support group discovered he was a 9-year military veteran.

    For the past two years a group of volunteers from "Hope on the Streets" or H.O.T.S. have been heading down to Margaret T. Hance Park in Phoenix to give lunch and water to the homeless.

    It's there they met up with Hersey Etoye Ross. But a couple of weeks ago they didn't see Hersey and discovered he had died from heat exhaustion, a common killer among the homeless in Arizona.

    Volunteers started searching for Hersey's family.

    "A few of our team members went above and beyond to dig up some information, since the next of kin could not be located. We learned he was honorably discharged from the Army after 9 years of service," said Jami Locke with H.O.T.S.

    Volunteers then called the military and discovered because of his years of service Hersey qualified for a full military burial, but unfortunately while alive he was not eligible for benefits.

    The service was held Thursday at the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona in north Phoenix.
    Video at the link.

    Here is Phoenix we have a huge center for the homeless. There are so many homeless veterans around there, it is heartbreaking. This is not what they deserve.

    Rest in peace Hersey Etoye Ross

  2. #2
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    This situation is more than ''wrong'' - I read about it today and felt terrible for him RIP
    Just My Opinion

  3. #3
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    UR awesome newone!

  4. #4
    Kimberlyd125's Avatar
    Kimberlyd125 is offline Softball is for everyone. Fast pitch is for athletes.
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    It's a crying shame that many of our vets are homeless, while others who are perfectly heathy and could work are laying on their arses and having more and more kids to recieve more benefits!!!

    I'm not gonna get started on this. My BP will hit the roof.

    God bless our veterans. They deserve so much more than they get.
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  5. #5
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    Rest In Peace Hersey Ross. Thank you for your service to our Country.

  6. #6
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    The continual stories about the mistreatment of our military vets is extremely disheartening. It's fine while they are putting themselves on the line for us, but then they get screwed for it. This is so unacceptable. Our government seems to have plenty of money for completely ridiculous things, but we have military homeless on our streets. For shame.

  7. #7
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    Oh, dear. Will I get in trouble if I ask which benefits you would want for this military vet to get if he were still living? I am very interest in knowing the answer(s). Thanks in advance for not shooting me for asking.

  8. #8
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    Kimberlyd125 is offline Softball is for everyone. Fast pitch is for athletes.
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    AZ-Homeless veteran denied benefits, but is given full military funeral

    Housing assistance? Food and medical assistance?

    I guess I would have liked to have seen him have anything he needed to make his life bearable so that he was not on the streets to freeze in the winter or die of heat in the summer.

    There are crack heads and gang bangers living in public houseing, getting food stamps, and Medicaid all the while being able to work. But instead have more and more kids so they can get more benefits.

    Our veterans should be taken care of.

    IMO
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by teedie2 View Post
    Oh, dear. Will I get in trouble if I ask which benefits you would want for this military vet to get if he were still living? I am very interest in knowing the answer(s). Thanks in advance for not shooting me for asking.
    I'm not sure how they are using the word vet here. If he was a veteran of a foreign war. If he served in a combat arena and was a vet. Or if he served during peacetime of the Cold War era and had prior service but not technically a Veteran.

    It is my understanding that those are two distinct categories. Prior service, and Veteran status.

    At any rate, his benefits given his length of service were the full military burial. I don't know if he had a discharge that included a documented injury or illness brought about by his service. If so, he could have very well have qualified for medical care as well.

    Serving for nine years would not qualify him for retirement benefits. There are many outreach programs for our Vets, and also for those that do not qualify as vets but served our country.

    Before anyone thinks I'm being unkind or uncaring. I am a military wife, I have been one for almost 2 decades, while my Husband has 26 years in Active Duty. We also have a Son who is now Active Duty. So my heart is in the right place when I type out the above.

    The problem lies, for the most part, with getting these benefits to the qualifying vets and prior service members. If they are not located in an area where they can easily access this care, then often we are confronted with that they don't want to be given the care, don't want to take a "hand-out" as they sometimes put it.

    It's a delicate and dicey situation.

    But again, I say-Rest In Peace, and thank you for serving our country to Hersey.

  10. #10
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    Oh Bless -- this man served our country and this is how he is treated. I've witnessed many vets who actually choose to live on the streets, and have had conversations. Some find it too hard to fight, while others just don't know where to go - while others have obvious mental conditions. It's us as a community who need to help where the holes are open. There are SO many in San Diego (homeless, etc) that I gave money to. The ones who don't do the crack or drugs. I suggest places to go, numbers to call. Since I moved, I miss those special guys. One imparticular, who spent his days drawing and sitting with his dog. I always went into Rubio's and bought him a meal -- he really appreciated it.

    On that note, I think we should take care of our vets (regardless if they served in war or during civil times) first before we hand out welfare checks to illegal aliens. I find this personal as my husband is from the UK and has worked very hard to obtain his US citizenship.

    RIP my dear friend!

    Mel


  11. #11
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    I'm sure a military funeral is very nice, however I think they need to worry less about burying them and worry more about keeping them alive.

  12. #12
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    Kimberlyd125 is offline Softball is for everyone. Fast pitch is for athletes.
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    AZ-Homeless veteran denied benefits, but is given full military funeral

    Quote Originally Posted by Belinda View Post
    I'm sure a military funeral is very nice, however I think they need to worry less about burying them and worry more about keeping them alive.
    Great point!
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Belinda View Post
    I'm sure a military funeral is very nice, however I think they need to worry less about burying them and worry more about keeping them alive.
    I did not know this gentleman personally. But many of the homeless vets do qualify for, and receive many medical services at the VA here. I'm pretty sure that he would have been able to receive services there too. But many of the veterans are very proud. A lot of them are just simply no different from my boyfriend who only seems to want to go to the doctor when he knocking on death's door .

    There are day programs around the resource center for our homeless that he may have qualified for. Everyone there is qualified to receive medical/ dental services, 3 meals a day, case managers and other activities at the campus. Water bottles are provided at the front desk to the area many people come to to escape the elements during the day. The center also has art classes, life skills workshops, counseling and recovery groups. Many of the homeless are on lists to receive free housing, but many are on those lists for over a year before they get into an apartment. One woman veteran I know has been homeless for almost two years waiting for her housing. Hersey may very well have been on such a housing list and/or another list for higher quility long term homeless shelter.

    Men can stay at the main homeless shelter for six months. They can stay longer if they have a job and are working towards getting their own place. At the end of the six months there are other smaller shelters that they can stay at for thirty days to 2 years. But mostly the men go to sleep at the overflow shelter where they sleep outside in an enclosed area.

    The entire area is heavily patrolled by LE. Absolutely no children are allowed onto the campus unless they are going to use medical clinic.

    But all of the benefits come at a cost.

    Many of the men at the overflow have just been released from prison, a great number of which are SOs. Many men, and of course women, do not like to spend all of their time at the campus/ shelters because of this element.

    It can get very violent in spite of the police presence. About two years ago one of the men working at the men's shelter was shot and killed protecting homeless clients when another man went on a shooting spree because no one would give him his medications. Since then they are constantly updating the security but it seems impossible to stop it all. On Thanksgiving a man just pulled out a gun and shot another man right outside the gates to the campus. Latter on in the day a police officer ran by me so fast my head spun on his way to stop a very violent fight.

    There are "family"/territory wars. Drugs. You name it. One time one of the men was yelling because he very clearly was having PTSD attacks from the Viet Nam war. Anther man didn't like this and there was a fight.

    I think there is a huge ever growing problem with bed bugs.

    Many just can't handle this environment. Many, especially the men, just would rather sleep on the streets.

    The park that Hersey died at is about half way in between the homelessness campus and the VA. I'm hoping that is an indication that he was receiving services at both the VA and the homelessness campus. Even if he wasn't living at one of the shelters. But even a small walk in this heat can be very dangerous.

    Anyway, sorry to have gone on so much, I guess I'm just trying to show that Arizona really does try to help the homeless. It just wasn't enough or provided in time to help Hersey. Massive funding continues to be pulled as a result of the economy, that is a huge contributor to the tragedies like this.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by teedie2 View Post
    Oh, dear. Will I get in trouble if I ask which benefits you would want for this military vet to get if he were still living? I am very interest in knowing the answer(s). Thanks in advance for not shooting me for asking.
    I don't know the ''true'' situation but I have been reading numerous accounts of PTSD amoung returning vets and the denial of their claims by the military for medical benefits for such treatment. Perhaps there was a disability claim involved as well.

    http://www.cleveland.com/nation/inde...ptsd_like.html

    link above is for claims dismissed as personality disorders not ptsd

    http://www.legalhelpforveterans.com/

    I understand that there are law firms across usa attempting to resolve these denials - I will attempt to find the link of most up to date story.
    Last edited by newone; 08-16-2010 at 11:23 AM. Reason: added link
    Just My Opinion

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by teedie2 View Post
    Oh, dear. Will I get in trouble if I ask which benefits you would want for this military vet to get if he were still living? I am very interest in knowing the answer(s). Thanks in advance for not shooting me for asking.
    Right now with the housing lists closing down and rarely opening with availabilities, I'd like to see them put at the top f the lists. Right now they are prioritizing people who have been homeless for a year or longer, but that includes most of the people on the list.

    And for sure what Newone pointed out. Acknowledging that there can be serious psychological side affects to service in addition to the physical ones. I recently heard that they have proven that soldiers in our current war are experiencing PTSD even if they have not been exposed to combat.

    And don't be silly, questions are cool at Websleuth's. Sleuthy types are almost always as a rule curious inquisitors.

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