Berta Elder
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Berta last won the day on February 15

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About Berta

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  • Service Connected Disability

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  • Location
    Beautiful hills of NY
  • Interests
    tactical warfare student- AMU
    Oriental home design
    organic cleaning tips
    Capt Adoph Von Shell-interested in any info at all!
    German Commander (WWI)lectured to the US Army after the war on warfare-- PTSD - tactics etc-and Leadership
    The Pullers-Chesty and Lewis (USMC)
    chocolate brownies
    anything at all regarding Vietnam
    the failure of the Maginot Line (WWII)
    Trench warfare
    anything amphibious

    Led Zepplin, Bob Dylan, Sting, Al Green, Mozart, Classical guitar,Moog synthesizer, Eminem,Janis Joplin,
    Michael Jackson, Teddy Pendergast, Mongo Santamaria,
    Cal Tjader, Miles Davis, AmerIndian battle chants,
    Hendrix,etc etc etc
    Pho and nuc mam dinners

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  1. I assume she has SSA Medicare and CHAMPVA but assisted living can be very costly. I also assume maybe she gets SBP but that is offset by her DIC. Gold Star Wives works aggressively every year before Congress to eliminate the SBP offset.Perhaps that would happen when she needs it the most....if that happens. All I can think of is if there is still property in her name, that your locale might have property tax exemptions. I get 2 real estate tax exemptions as widows of a 100% P & T veteran. Maybe someone here knows of something else.
  2. There is a provision of the vet had applied for DMII and was denied prior to the DMII regs being published: "Retroactive Benefits Under a federal court decision, Vietnam Veterans are eligible for retroactive awards of benefits for their diabetes if you applied for service-connection for diabetes before the VA diabetes regulation went into effect on May 8, 2001. If you were previously denied service-connection for diabetes mellitus (Type II), you should reapply by contacting your local VA office." That wont help you but might help someone else. What date did the VA state they determined your entitlement to DMII compensation ":arose"? Gee that might help ME....death with AO DMII contributing ,awarded 2009-but my husband died from it's untreated complications in 1994...... no rating at all, no treatment- just like his AO IHD.Awarded in 2012. I proved to the General Counsel that a VA doctor's diagnosis of diabetes in 1992 occurred in the med recs but someone crossed it out- yet it was still visible, this doctor was the only doc on the team who knew what he was doing, when I proved step-by-step how the other docs covered up the nmalpratice from a different VA.The neuro doc left the VA and it took montyhs to find him in private practice and he gave me a freeby IMO.There was no question when he treated my husband in 1992 at the VA ( he remembered this all from my email to him) that my husband had diabetes mellitus.I had considerable other evidence to prove that as well.BVA agreed. I guess I have another CUE claim to file.
  3. "I filed a claim for VA disability benefits in January, 2011 and this claim was denied for failiure to prove I was ever in Vietnam. " Did they give you any DMII NSC rating on the rating sheet for that denial? "My private Dr. determined I had Diabetes Mellitus Type II October, 2010 " When did the VA receive that info? You might have basis for a CUE claim.Might.....or more retro under a 38 CFR 3.156 claim. Under Nehmer if a disability "should have been rated ( coded) "in a past decision and was subsequently awarded under Nehmer,it is possible a CUE could recover more retro. But I am thinking of Nehmer 3 ( all in our AO forum under Footnote One.) when IHD became presumptive.I am not sure at all if the DMII regulations allowed for any Footnote One provisions. I received an EED for my dead husband AO IHD which "should have been coded" on every rating sheet since 1988, but because it had been a malpracticed and untreated condition, they failed to give it any diagnostic code or rating.I will try to find out on the DMII and if I find something I will post it here. .
  4. Buck. you suggested to use CUE as the last means but I have used it as an IMMEDIATE frontal assault after I got my last two or three decisions. I have not had time to fully prepare something I mentioned here before. I need to request from VA Sec Shulkin to develop a fast Letter that advises how a claimant can request the VA to CUE itself in an unappealed decision within the appeal period.This way all vet reps and vet lawyers who get the fast letter will have an obligation to not only look right away for CUE in any decision, but also to have a regulation to back up a CUE filed in the appeal period.This could reduce the backlog and keep the claim at the RO until they do it right. Oddly enough, even without any formal reg, it sure has worked for me, and two vets here have used this tactic so far. As I mentioned in my HBP 1151 CUE it took less than a month for their reversal of their ludicrous denial. I have 3 CUEs in Word now, which I already sent to the director but have been so pressed for time that maybe this coming week they will be formally sent in. Since my husband died over 22 years ago every single issue VA I had was denied right off the bat and I regret I didnt use this tactic sooner.It would have definitely kept my AO DMI death claim out of the BVA. A 2005 CUE I filed got me a fast double DRO review,but still they ignored my IMos and I chose to take the BVA route, and the BVA certainly awarded the claim and also agreed my VCAA rights had been violated. This tactic and an NOD along with the CUE is what got the VA to reverse the only claim my daughter has had as a veteran. It was for her DEA entitlement certificate. A BIG error, and they reversed 3 weeks after she got the NOD/CUE I prepared and she copied, signed and mailed it to them at the VA Education Department here in NY. Sometimes VA EDU is an oxymoron. I think this vet here has a very good vet rep who was willing to prepare and file a CUE . I think most vet reps are either too lazy or too incompetent to do that....or maybe would be very willing to, if they had a formal regulation to do it with.
  5. This link has contact info: Just think if only 1 % of all US veterans ( about 26 million) spent less than a buck on 2 snail mail letters, one to the President and one to the VA Secretary and mailed them all at the same time,it would be very difficult for the VA to disregard the problems you men and women have, with this overload of mail---that would show veterans expect true Reform at the VA. The letters could be about any problems you have had with VA health care as well as your claims. I sent letters about ways they could reduce the backlog. But that was before I learned the backlog is even worse than I thought. I always have addressed the VA Sec as Honorable VA Secretary (name) in letters,(have written to about 5 or more of them) but I just put Dear President Trump in my letter to him..
  6. " BVA SAYS OCT 2013 CASES ONLY.. HOW DID THIS HAPPEN" I think the VA is juggling the books on claims, remands, everything........ because the Bonus moratorium for VARO Directors has been lifted. The vet orgs dont care. The longer VA takes to render proper decisions, the longer they have job security But I also think the Main Reason this crap happens is because veterans have allowed it to happen. Dont forget-the new VA Secretary was hired to REFORM the VA , not to maintain the status quo, but only veterans themselves know how SNAFUED the VA is . How many here are willing to write to the new VA Secretary or briefly tell the President their story on his .gov web site which I have already posted here?
  7. Great!- I found that M21-1MR citation too and I would have added violated of 38 CFR 4.6 but this should do it. I am sure the rep clearly stated the date of the recent denial after the Re; above. On CUEs like this, when the decision is within the appeal period, I always state ATTENTION TO: and put the entire alphanumeric code that appears on the upper right hand side of the decision ( If they are still putting that info on the decision ) because that holds the initials of the last person who handled your claim. My last denial ( March 2015) held the initials of the same VA guy who called me up to verify they had my evidence,and his initials appeared on the decision,and on the 5103 packet, and I named him in my recent CUE because he sent me only one 5103 but it was for 2 separate claims, and in spite of him verifying the evidence they had for both claims, he failed to give it to the rater for the 1151 claim ( I filed CUE and was awarded within one month -April 2015 on that last year) but they still failed to consider my evidence for the other issue...that he himself verified they had received.I named him as directly responsible for ignoring my evidence in the CUE I filed recently. He also violated my 5103 rights, by violating my 38 CFR 4.6 rights. If they even used one piece of the 13 pieces of evidence, the decision would have been different. The first piece of evidence I had was a letter from a former VA Secretary,All of it was probative. I have filed many CUES over the years and there is a good chance if the committed one CUE in a decision they sure possibly committed more than one (my SMC CUE held 4 or 5). I am so glad you have a vet rep who is Very up to speed on CUE and how 38 USC 5109 can be used against them. ...even within the appeal period. Yippee!
  8. That is a good question. I found two different criterias for membership at the GSW web site: You are eligible for membership if you meet these requirements: Any surviving spouse of any person of the United States military who died while a member of the armed forces of our country, or who died subsequent to such service as a result of an injury or disability incurred during such service, shall be eligible for membership in the chapters of the Gold Star Wives of America, Inc., if there is a chapter in the area within which the person resides; however, where there is no chapter organized within the place where such qualified member resides, such qualified person may become a member-at-large. and Who we are: · The widows/widowers whose spouses died while serving in the Armed Forces of the United States, or as result of service-connected disabilities. · The widows/widowers of service personnel of all armed conflicts involving the United States of America. · The mothers and fathers of children whose parents gave their life in the service of the country. · The widows/widowers of service personnel of all ranks, races, and creeds. I think maybe they have different types of memberships- but I will check with them. When I joined GSWs I didn't think I could join, as I had a DIC award due to VA malpractice. I asked them via snail mail if I could join and they wrote back to me with the application and said they did want me to join.Subsequently the VA awarded for direct SC death of my husband anyhow. ( Combat USMC, AO ,Vietnam,IHD, DMII). SBP: I don’t know what RESPA is The REPS benefit application is here: It explains the criteria for this benefit.
  9. to add: you stated : " I was medically discharged a year later due to asthma brought on by anxiety and panic attacks while onboard my duty station. " Is there anything in your SMRs that fully documents that the anxiety and panic attacks occurred? Is that what your medical discharge says? Did VA list those docs as evidence? Anything at all in your SMRs regarding treatment for anxiety? There is medical info on Google that anxiety can be caused by asthma and vice versa. Perhaps Dr Valette could opine that the SC asthma caused the anxiety and panic attacks,which I assume have continued since service? Perhaps your rep is cueing under Clemons: This BVA award shows what I mean: Regardless of personal military trauma causes, a veteran should never lock themselves into a sole PTSD claim, because there are other MH disabilities they should consider, based on the evidence they have. PTSD is an anxiety disorder but Clemons is a good read as to how we claimants are not MH professionals and cannot diagnose ourselves when we know we do have MH issues. Maybe the rep cued the decision because it might fall under the definition of inadequate C & P under M21-1MR because no MH diagnosis was given. Do you have a copy of the CUE the rep filed? If you could scan and attach that here it would be great and we might be able to help more. (Cover C file #,name, address etc prior to scanning it)
  10. "In response to the ptsd denial, my VSO is putting together a response in the form of a CUE because the rater failed to consider my behavioral change while in service as evidence to support my mst. " That is interesting-I guess some VSOs are reading my CUE tactic for CUEs that are filed within the appeal period.Another vet's rep here did that as well- CUE on recent decision, within the appeal period ( this will still require a timely NOD if they do not award the CUE within the first year NOD time frame). But is this a CUE under 38 CFR 4.6? By "behavioral change" do you mean you asked for a transfer or your job performances suddenly changed for the worse? That info would be in your personnel file but might be in your SMRs??? There is a lot of info here at hadit on MST claims.Often they rest heavily on any evidence of an "outcry". "To help with my fight I am seeking the assistance of an outside vet friendly psychologist (Dr. Valette) to write an imo.($2k) So, that would make 3 mental health professional giving me a diagnosis that refutes the report of the c&p examiner." But the examiner said this: "It is possible that the veteran suffers from a mental illness. However, I am ethically unable to provide a diagnosis at this time given the veteran's response pattern of overreporting on three objective, reliable and valid psychological tests. Providing a diagnosis would require this examiner to resort to mere speculation "etc. The VA will not except a non VA MH professional's diagnosis of PTSD. I know Dr Valette has helped others here but more, I am sure, to get them a higher PTSD rating for established PTSD. "So, that would make 3 mental health professional giving me a diagnosis that refutes the report of the c&p examiner." Are the other two MH professionals VA doctors? Maybe that is what the rep filed CUE on?
  11. Thank you for replying to my concerns. It was quite helpful.

  12. Thanks Brokensoldier, I keep forgetting that is on ebenefits.
  13. I just re -read your post and realized you did not put a comma after the renal failure so that would mean the type of acidosis was surely Hyperkalemia. (renal failure acidosis) A patient with diabetes and/or an abnormally high potassium serum level are at risk for this type of often deadly acidosis. Did your husband have chronic kidney disease? ( AKA renal disease?) Did he have abnormally high levels of potassium? ( this would be found on blood chem reports) What is potassium and what does it do in the body? Potassium is a mineral that controls nerve and muscle function. The heart beats at a normal rhythm because of potassium. Potassium is also necessary for maintaining fluid and electrolyte balance and pH level. In order for potassium to perform these functions, blood levels must be kept between 3.5 and 5.5 mEq/L. The kidneys help keep potassium at a normal level. You stated: “The CT also shows what looks like part of his intestines and colon look dead.” The VA could have ruptured his colon,or intestines during the colon ostomy which, in turn ,caused the infection and then full blown sepsis. That was how Patty Duke died.Her death brought aware to the medical community of this type of sepsis. I am so sorry for what you are going through but this will all take a strong IMO doctor to do a full review of all of his medical records. Probably an IMO doc would be needed even for any direct AO SC issues such as IHD and.or DMII. I am not doctor, these are just my opinions, but I feel when a spouse has a bad feeling that something went wrong medically at VA in cases like this, they sure might be right. I didnt think my husband had been malpracticed on in his lifetime( I was aware of a major misdiagnosis that they changed when I threathened them with a call to my Congressman...but after that I thought he would get better care when he was transferred to the Syracuse VAMC) The day he died he was upset because the 800# told him his 2 pending claims had not moved at all at the RO.He made me promise to continue to help his veteran brothers and sisters if he died and then to promise I would continue his 1151 claim ( if the VA killed him) and higher PTSD rating claims after he died- I promised to do both but I said Honey the VA isn't going to kill anyone.He seemed to be doing so much better but while we were in my barn he collapsed 4 hours later, and died as I gave him CPR.(Sudden death syndrome) As I began the reopen of his 1151 ( no substitution regs then) I knew, based on the death certificate ( the 6 page autopsy took a few months to get here) I knew without a doubt he was right-the VA had killed him. Some here probably think I am paranoid that VA could create so much horrific negligence with vets but I sent proof of the VA malpractice pay -out stats and also where their hidden stats are to be found, to the H VAC (Chairman Miller), and wrote to President Trump recently that if he could prevent more VA malpractice, ( with severe consequences for negligent VA doctors)who often get away with it )( I told him how they do that) the VA would save enough $$$ that they could pay for the Wall he wants to build. Malpractice happens even at the best private hospitals in America but a lot of it can be prevented at the VA, and worse yet many vets die of malpractice yet their families take no action at all against the VA and/or are often completely unaware that anything went wrong.
  14. I think you should try to get a Copy of the C & P exam before sending the VA that letter. If it was done at a VAMC you can request a copy of it via their Privacy Act or Records access office. Just my opinion.
  15. The backlog didn't impact on Bonuses!