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World War Ii Va Vet Claim


Charleese

Question

Hi everyone,

I have a World War II VET who wants to file a VA compensation claim. He had a head injury in 1944 while in service and it has affected him ever since. He is 87 years old. He presently gets SSA and railroad retirement medicare. He does not get a check from the railroad just medicare. He retired from work in 1996.

1. Does anyone know whether he can file a compensation claim with him receiving railroad medicare and not having railroad mess with his medicare.

2. What is the Regulation Code that can be used whereas they would look at his claim right away.

Thanks!

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  • HadIt.com Elder
Hi everyone,

I have a World War II VET who wants to file a VA compensation claim. He had a head injury in 1944 while in service and it has affected him ever since. He is 87 years old. He presently gets SSA and railroad retirement medicare. He does not get a check from the railroad just medicare. He retired from work in 1996.

1. Does anyone know whether he can file a compensation claim with him receiving railroad medicare and not having railroad mess with his medicare.

2. What is the Regulation Code that can be used whereas they would look at his claim right away.

Thanks!

I see no reason they would mess with his medicare. One has nothing to do with the other. As for a regulation or code to get them to look at his claim right away, I know of none. A couple of years ago the VA developed teams, can't recall their names, that are supposed to handle claims of those 70yo and above, in an expeditious manner.

pr

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Charleese,

Has the veteran ever filed a claim with VA, prior to this for any disability to be service connected ?

If yes what was or were the claimed disabilities and what were the results ?

You said he wants to file a claim for a head injury --- I feel this is much too generalized of a request

and he will need to be more specific . What are the documented symptoms and has he received

continuity of care through either the private sector or VA ?

carlie

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Charleese,

Has the veteran ever filed a claim with VA, prior to this for any disability to be service connected ?

If yes what was or were the claimed disabilities and what were the results ?

You said he wants to file a claim for a head injury --- I feel this is much too generalized of a request

and he will need to be more specific . What are the documented symptoms and has he received

continuity of care through either the private sector or VA ?

carlie

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Charleese,

Has the veteran ever filed a claim with VA, prior to this for any disability to be service connected ?

If yes what was or were the claimed disabilities and what were the results ?

You said he wants to file a claim for a head injury --- I feel this is much too generalized of a request

and he will need to be more specific . What are the documented symptoms and has he received

continuity of care through either the private sector or VA ?

carlie

Hi Carlie,

No he has never filed a claim before because he didn't know that he could. Yes he wants to file this claim now that he knows he can. This injury has plagued him throughout the years. Because of it he has suffered with blackouts/fainting spells, terrible headaches, and falling at times. Over the years the falling had gotten worse and frequently. He has had a major operation on his head because of bleeding in the head. They even had to put a rod in his right leg because of the falls. He has developed a heart condition, had a stroke, diabetes, prostrate cancer, depression, and poor circulation of right leg and weakness of left leg. Yes he has been treated and cared for privately over the years for these conditions.

I believe he can connect the head injury with the blackouts/fainting spells, and headaches. The falls he can connect because of the blackouts/fainting spells with his right leg. He can say that because of his right leg it has made his left leg weak. His right leg is also shorter than the left. His prostrate cancer he could say is from the atmospheric testing and fumes from airplanes in North Africa. The Depression, heart condition and stroke he can say comes from everything. The diabetes he may have a hard time conneting even though it would secondary.

He's going to need a lot of help with this.

If you or anyone on hadit can help me to help him and trying to get a nexus to all of the above I certainly will appreciate it

Thanks!

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Does he have a copy of his service medical records or personnel records or did they burn up like my Dad's at St Louis? If he has records of in-service injuries or combat awards it will be easier to win some of these claims. If he is a combat veteran a lot of what he says must be taken as truth by reasonable doubt. Reason being a lot of things happen in combat that are not written down in reports.

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Does he have a copy of his service medical records or personnel records or did they burn up like my Dad's at St Louis? If he has records of in-service injuries or combat awards it will be easier to win some of these claims. If he is a combat veteran a lot of what he says must be taken as truth by reasonable doubt. Reason being a lot of things happen in combat that are not written down in reports.

Yes NPRC said his records burn in fire. However, he does have copies of his Honorable Diischarge and Enlisted Record And Report Of Separation papers. Nothing on these documents list his head injury or his bout with acute tosillitis. He does have a copy of a hospital report from the 6th General Hospital in North Africa letting his Commanding Officer know that he was admitted to that hospital on April 14, 1944 which states for head injury. This report is dated April 15, 1944. He said he stayed in the hospital for 7 days or more. He also has a copy of his Discharge from hospital for Acute Tonsillitis dated February 17, 1944. He was admitted on February 2nd of that year. Even though he stayed that long in the hospital, he claims he does not remember them removing his tonsills. He has gotten an American Defense Ribbon, European-African-Middle Eastern Ribbon, Good Conduct Medal, 2 Overseas Bars, and 1 Service Stripe. I don't know whether you can called him a combat veteran or not. His MOS was Medical Corpsman.

Please let me know what you or anyone here at hadit thinks as to whether he can win his claim or not.

Thanks!

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Charleese,

I agree that it seems that the claim for compensation is much too generalized, and the veteran will need to be much more specific.

That’s not saying that the claim is not worth fighting for, but it will definitely be an uphill battle.

With that being said, you may want to try and provide the VA with more specific information upfront that will serve as supporting evidence and help the VA arrive at a favorable decision on the veteran’s behalf.

Be sure to have a copy of all of the Veteran’s service medical records and discharge papers.

You also mentioned that you already have a have a copy of a hospital report from the 6th General Hospital in North Africa letting his Commanding Officer know that he was admitted to that hospital on April 14, 1944 which states for head injury, dated April 15, 1944 in which the veteran was hospitalized for 7 days or more. That is good. Whatever you do, please make several copies of this information if you haven’t already done so. (I don't see the relevance of the mention of hospitilization for the Acute Tonsillitis) In cases such as these, information is often never found or may have been lost or destroyed mysteriously, as the case with the fire in Army Record Center St. Louis, MO back in 1973. It makes one wonder would a country so rich and powerful as ours be so ____ as to put all U.S. military records in one facility and it burn down. Mmmmmmmmmhhhhhhhh?????? Doubtful.

Please check with the Archives II office in Washington, D.C. They will not be able to provide you with the Veteran’s personal records, but they should at least be able to provide you with supporting documentation from the veteran’s unit. You could try checking for unit reports, morning reports, and medical records relevant to the date that the veteran was injured. (Research over the internet and check and see if the veterans unit may have been attached out under a different unit(s). If so, that may be key when trying to obtain supporting documentation) Never give more than a three month window for your search request, and if at all possible try and keep it limited to a two month request interval. Things were not kept on computers back during this time frame, so you don’t want to overwhelm others that will be trying to assist you with your research request.

Question for you??? Since being discharged from the service, has the veteran ever received treatment from a VA treatment facility? If so, was it prior to the fire in 1973? If your answer is yes, it’s quite possible that this particular VA facility may have retired records that could possibly contain the veteran’s individual personnel records.

Meanwhile, if you have not already done so, contact any and all of the veteran’s treating physicians over the years and request a copy of his/her medical records. Organize as much information as possible pertaining to the aforementioned injury. For example, **** type symptoms as early as ______, by Dr. ____, showing proof of treatments from _____hospital. Current letters from the veteran’s personal care physician on his/her behalf, as well as a VA treatment facility might not be a bad idea as well. (physician description/affect on daily activities…presently as well as to it’s correlation in the past)

If the veteran has any sworn affidavits or buddy statements from fellow unit members, referencing his/her injury include it. Also include any letters that could be given on his/her behalf from friends or family members showing how the following condition has affected the veteran over the years. (illustrating it’s effect on family members, co-workers, neighbors, or any others affected in their daily interaction with the veteran)

As for as the head injury, be specific. Be graphic, Re live the moment. Include even the minutest detail. The VA will try and be clueless. You are going to have to recreate a mental picture for them and how it has affected, traumatized, or affected the veteran medically when and since the incident has happened over the years.

Be patient, be persistent, and whatever you do, don’t give up.

Good luck, and don’t forget the request for an expedite due to the veteran’s age.

Hope this information helps you.

Last and not least, MAKE A COPY OF EVERYTHING!!!!!

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Charleese,

one other thing. Go to the www.va.gov website and look under appeals. Type in the key word pertaining to the type of compensation claim that you are seeking and just research previous decisions. For denied claims, you may want to see what information the veteran failed to present that would have served as supporting documentation helping to prove a veterans claim and make sure you take whatever necessary steps in order to avoid the same mistake. For approved claims, see what evidence the veteran presented to help win their claim, and see if you can do the same. Once again good luck. :angry:

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Charleese,

one other thing. Go to the www.va.gov website and look under appeals. Type in the key word pertaining to the type of compensation claim that you are seeking and just research previous decisions. For denied claims, you may want to see what information the veteran failed to present that would have served as supporting documentation helping to prove a veterans claim and make sure you take whatever necessary steps in order to avoid the same mistake. For approved claims, see what evidence the veteran presented to help win their claim, and see if you can do the same. Once again good luck. :angry:

Hi qmasters3240, thanks for your replies.

No he has never filed with any VA for compensation or medical benefits. He has only been treated privately for his medical issues. Yes we have a lot of copies of his head injury statement, tonsillitis statement, etc. He was treated three times after first incident with tonsillitis while in service but do not have records for that. Because he suffers with sore throats, and bronchitis, mostly in the winter time he believes is a result of the tonsillitis he had while in service is the reason why he wants that in. Whether he gets any rating out of this remains to be seem, but he wants it in there.

As far as his head injury goes, he intends to say that he was plagued with this head injury since 1944 to this present day. He will let them know that he has had headaches with memory loss, dizziness, concussions, as residuals of head injury, as well as blackouts/fainting spells, falls, a right leg injury because of blacking out/fainting and falling resulting in a rod being place in leg, stroke, heart condition, depression, etc. from it. He was operated on in 2003 for one of his head injury because of bleeding. He has a report from Rehab stating about all his earlier falls from 1944 on as well as this last operation. He intends to attach this report to his application. He also has prostrate cancer, which he saids is from atmospheric testing, spraying of chemicals in North Africa, etc. Diabetes, and Glucoma. He has medical evidence that can prove all of his treatments that have been done privately by his doctor. When time comes and need be his wife will write a letter stating that when she met in him 1944 and started dating him then, how he acted with the headaches with memory loss, the dizziness, etc. She also have come home and found him laid out in the basement, and he wouldn't be able to explain what happen as to how he got there or fell. Also, his next door neighbor will write as well, telling how he would black out and they would come home and find him laid out on the ground.

These are the things that we hope they will consider. Please let me know what you or anybody reading this topic thinks.

Thanks!

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gmasters gave you excellent advise Charleese---

all I could add it that- even though there is documentation of a head injury in service- so much time has passed that this veteran would certainly need to prove a nexus to that injury and to his present problems.

I thiink the VA could well consider that his problems stem from another cause.

"He has had a major operation on his head because of bleeding in the head."

This could be a hemmoragic stroke and he does show symptoms of transcient brain ischemia.

These could be found as secondary to his diabetes-if he was diabetic for many years and not to the inservice injury.

As far as the diabetes , heart condition and glaucoma -it appears he is claiming these are due to

"atmospheric testing, spraying of chemicals in North Africa, etc."

This will take a lot of research to prove. The approximate date of the testings or spraying, what chemicals he was specifically exposed to, proof that his MOS put in there ,exposed to these specific conditions, and then he will need a strong medical opinion to link his service exposure to his present disabilities.

With his service records you can track his duties in North Africa and then see if there is any evidence at all of any use of chemicals or atmospheric testings that could have caused any of his disabilities.

There is some potential for the prostate cancer to be found as service connected as this case shows:

http://www.va.gov/vetapp03/files/0305135.txt

"The record indicates that the veteran may have been exposed

to ionizing radiation during his participation in atmospheric

testing of nuclear weapons. Prostate cancer became manifest

during the applicable presumptive period after putative

radiation exposure. The Board notes that prostate cancer is

a radiogenic disease pursuant to 38 C.F.R. § 3.311. The

Defense Reduction Agency reported that the veteran was

present at atmospheric tests code-named WIGWAM and REDWING,

and that the radiation dose level was 0.0 rem gamma at

WIGWAM, and 0.11 rem gamma at REDWING, reconstructed to read

0.0 rem gamma as well."

There is a presumptive period however for prostate cancer in radiogenic veterans (his medical records with first diagnosis of prostrate cancer would have to be compared with the specific regs on that and then the fact remains that he would have to identify the testing that exposed him to radiation and all of that would have to be verified.

This will be a difficult claim -but nothing is impossible. Yet it will take much research.

This site has some information on US atomospheric testing from 1945 to 1963:

http://www.cddc.vt.edu/host/atomic/atmosphr/index.html

I feel with his history of diabetes- the VA could well state that his symptoms were not due to a head injury in service but due to a longstanding diabetic medical profile.

Did he exhibit these symptoms from the head injury in service? As well as treatment for the injury?

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This is just my personal opinion, but I think it would be better if the veteran would just concentrate on one type of claim for compensation initially. In this case, the head injury. From there, depending on the outcome of the first claim, the veteran can try and seek compensation for the other conditions, but as a secondary to the initial.

Meanwhile, you can gather information for the other conditions, but sat that aside for now. You're trying to do too much at once and it's taking away from trying to get compensation for the first initial claim.

As far as the letter from the wife, neighbors, friends, or other family members, doctors etc.., don't wait. Gather and provide that information as soon as possible. The more the better.

Once again, if you have not already done so, contact all and any treating physicians for the veteran, and ask for a copy of his complete medical file. You want to provide as much information as possible pertaining to the head injury, and see if they would be willing to write a letter on the veterans behalf.

*****It is imperative that you use your state senators or congressman's help and have them contact the National Archives or Archives II facility in Washington, D.C. on the veterans behalf. They get the ball rolling quicker. Ref. the following:

Name

Address

Phone Number

SS/DOB

Branch of Military/Rank etc

Dates Served

Service Number and VA File number if you have one

State Unit name (don't forget to check for attachment(s)) Ask for copy of unit roster, morning reports, after action reports, duty officer logs, sick call records, and hospital records....

Provide a specific 2-3 month window.

Have veteran sign this information authorizing senator or congressman's office to request this information and have it sent off ASAP. It's going to take a minute because all of this information is on paper, and someone will have to manually retreive this information, so don't wait.

Also if you get your information, this is proof in the pudding that the injury did occur.

National Archives and Records Administration

8601 Adelphi Road

College Park, MD 20740-6001

(301) 837-3510

If you don't provide this information personally, you can almost bet that the VA will come back and say that the records were destroyed in the fire back in 1973 and they could not verify proof of the information, request for service connection denied.

If at all possible, just try and avoid that before it happens. Don't even waste your time with the office in MO. They now want to charge for information that may or may not be available on microfish.

Other Suggestions:

Go and hang out at a local VA hospital facility. Meet and mingle with other veterans and their family members. You could possible learn valuable information that would be helpful with your claim...etc...What DAV REP etc.. is one of the best and will go above and beyond to try and help your claim, and which you need to stay clear of etc....

You may also want to search the net for old unit members if they are still living or place an add in one of the local VA publication mags available at most VA medical treatment facilities.

Good luck. My family and I are still waiting. I just wish we knew some of these things up front.

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Hi everyone,

I have a World War II VET who wants to file a VA compensation claim. He had a head injury in 1944 while in service and it has affected him ever since. He is 87 years old. He presently gets SSA and railroad retirement medicare. He does not get a check from the railroad just medicare. He retired from work in 1996.

1. Does anyone know whether he can file a compensation claim with him receiving railroad medicare and not having railroad mess with his medicare.

2. What is the Regulation Code that can be used whereas they would look at his claim right away.

Thanks!

CHarleese,

Here's the info on expediting WWII claimants adjudications, taken from congressional testimony:

"One of our most successful initiatives has been the Tiger Team, which is located at the Cleveland Regional Office. The Secretary implemented the Tiger Team in November 2001 in order to process the oldest claims in VBA and to focus on claims from veterans age 70 and older that have been pending over one year. The emphasis was to be on War World II and Korean War veterans whose claims were mired in the system."

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Charleese,

I'm thinking that with the veteran's advanced age and not having much documentation, is it possible that it might be better for this veteran to apply for pension versus disability compensation ?

Just a thought.

carlie

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Charleese,

I'm thinking that with the veteran's advanced age and not having much documentation, is it possible that it might be better for this veteran to apply for pension versus disability compensation ?

Just a thought.

carlie

Hi Carlie,

I don't know what you mean by pension. What are the requirements? If it goes by income how much income is he suppose to have.

Thanks!

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CHarleese,

Here's the info on expediting WWII claimants adjudications, taken from congressional testimony:

"One of our most successful initiatives has been the Tiger Team, which is located at the Cleveland Regional Office. The Secretary implemented the Tiger Team in November 2001 in order to process the oldest claims in VBA and to focus on claims from veterans age 70 and older that have been pending over one year. The emphasis was to be on War World II and Korean War veterans whose claims were mired in the system."

Thanks Objee.

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gmasters gave you excellent advise Charleese---

all I could add it that- even though there is documentation of a head injury in service- so much time has passed that this veteran would certainly need to prove a nexus to that injury and to his present problems.

I thiink the VA could well consider that his problems stem from another cause.

"He has had a major operation on his head because of bleeding in the head."

This could be a hemmoragic stroke and he does show symptoms of transcient brain ischemia.

These could be found as secondary to his diabetes-if he was diabetic for many years and not to the inservice injury.

As far as the diabetes , heart condition and glaucoma -it appears he is claiming these are due to

"atmospheric testing, spraying of chemicals in North Africa, etc."

This will take a lot of research to prove. The approximate date of the testings or spraying, what chemicals he was specifically exposed to, proof that his MOS put in there ,exposed to these specific conditions, and then he will need a strong medical opinion to link his service exposure to his present disabilities.

With his service records you can track his duties in North Africa and then see if there is any evidence at all of any use of chemicals or atmospheric testings that could have caused any of his disabilities.

There is some potential for the prostate cancer to be found as service connected as this case shows:

http://www.va.gov/vetapp03/files/0305135.txt

"The record indicates that the veteran may have been exposed

to ionizing radiation during his participation in atmospheric

testing of nuclear weapons. Prostate cancer became manifest

during the applicable presumptive period after putative

radiation exposure. The Board notes that prostate cancer is

a radiogenic disease pursuant to 38 C.F.R. § 3.311. The

Defense Reduction Agency reported that the veteran was

present at atmospheric tests code-named WIGWAM and REDWING,

and that the radiation dose level was 0.0 rem gamma at

WIGWAM, and 0.11 rem gamma at REDWING, reconstructed to read

0.0 rem gamma as well."

There is a presumptive period however for prostate cancer in radiogenic veterans (his medical records with first diagnosis of prostrate cancer would have to be compared with the specific regs on that and then the fact remains that he would have to identify the testing that exposed him to radiation and all of that would have to be verified.

This will be a difficult claim -but nothing is impossible. Yet it will take much research.

This site has some information on US atomospheric testing from 1945 to 1963:

http://www.cddc.vt.edu/host/atomic/atmosphr/index.html

I feel with his history of diabetes- the VA could well state that his symptoms were not due to a head injury in service but due to a longstanding diabetic medical profile.

Did he exhibit these symptoms from the head injury in service? As well as treatment for the injury?

Thanks Berta

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Charleese,

I'm thinking that with the veteran's advanced age and not having much documentation, is it possible that it might be better for this veteran to apply for pension versus disability compensation ?

Just a thought.

carlie

Charleese,

Carlie has a very good point! Check VA pensions out at: http://www.vba.va.gov/ro/philly/disnewnonservice.htm

You can file a pension claim independent of any compensation claim. Your vet's situation is so old and complex that a pension would at least get him some more $$$$ sooner if he qualifies.

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