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Glens Homepage for Disabled Veterans Benefits

Disabled Vet Peppy, The Wonder Dog
Glen
Peppy


At this site I plan to provide information to disabled veterans which will allow them to make informed decisions on issues which affect their benefits.
Information included here will be links for such places as VA benefits, legislation pertaining to veterans issues, how to obtain representation for VA benefits claims processing, and any other information I feel would be useful to disabled veterans.


Let me start by telling you a little about myself.
I am a 38 year old disabled veteran of the U.S. Air Force (1981-92).
I first encountered severe low back pain in 1990 after doing some jogging.
After several months of the typical military medical red tape I finally got an appointment with a specialist.
He examined me and ordered an MRI which helped him diagnose accelerated degenerative disk disease in my lower back, L3/4 through L5/S1.

I was discharged in July 1992 as part of the military drawdown. I received a separation pay as a result of being discharged. Prior to discharge I applied for disability compensation with the VA.

Once out of the military the VA scheduled me for a compensation exam. After nearly a year of more red tape, exams, etc. I was found to be only 10% service-connected disabled.
Along with the rating was a letter explaining that due to receiving the separation pay I was not entitled to disability compensation.
I immediately appealed this decision.

In August 1995 I was increased to 40% disabled due to an aggravation of my condition.
As a result, I have been unable to work at any occupation since December 1995.

I applied for and was eventually recently approved for Social Security Disability.
Social Security found that there is no occupation in the national workforce that I am able to perform due to my disability.

I again appealed my current VA rating and also added an application for 100% disability due to unemployability. This was done in December 1996.
After nearly a year I have heard nothing from the VA.
Recently they told me that there is NO time limit in deciding appealed cases which tells me they can work on it, or not work on it, whenever they want.

With what the VA has put me through is the main purpose for me creating this page.
I would like to try to help other disabled veterans to hopefully avoid some of the beauracratic nonsense I have been subjected to.
If you are in a similar situation as I, or know someone in a similar situation, please feel free to write me at the address below or put a note in my guestbook.
I check both daily.

Also, if you know of other disabled veterans sites, I would love to have the address so I can visit.

I plan to update this site as time permits.
Any suggestions on how to improve this page, or questions in general, can be directed to the address below or to my guestbook.

Thank you for visiting my page and don't forget to please SIGN my guestbook....

UPDATE
As of December 1997 my service connected disabilities were increased to a total of 70% combined rating.
I was also granted a 100% rating due to unemployability which I suppose is a mixed blessing. I would much rather be healthy enough to work, but since I am not at, least the VA is finally acknowledging that fact and compensating me accordingly.

So.. for all you disabled veterans out there still fighting for compensation... DO NOT give up.
It can and will happen for you but may take some time.
Make sure you have good representation.
I don't know if I would have ever gotten the benefits I am entitled to, at least this soon, without the assistance of the DAV.

UPDATE as of January 2002
After several years of fighting the VA.. and with the hard work of my DAV Representative.. I finally was awarded 100% Permanent and Total disability.

Everyone reading this.. PLEASE do not give up on your claims for benefits.
Good things CAN happen.. if we continue to fight for what we are entitled to.

More to follow.. soon

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