McLennan County Veteran’s Service Officer Steve Hernandez said the veteran was a patient who had been enrolled in the Phoenix program at the Olin E. Teague Veterans’ Medical Center in Temple and was discharged, but somehow his case was transferred to the Austin facility.
“When he found out he couldn’t get the help he needed there, he chose to take his own life,” Hernandez said.
Suicide inside Austin Veterans Affairs Clinic shuts down building
Posted: Apr 09, 2019
AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin's Veteran Affairs Clinic shut down Tuesday as detectives investigated a suicide in the first-floor waiting room.
Witnesses reported hundreds of people were inside the room when a man shot and killed himself shortly after noon.
Ken Walker, who's been going to the VA Clinic on Metropolis for more than two years, said he continued with his group therapy class for nearly an hour after the shooting before he learned what happened.
"All of a sudden, over the intercom, they have this statement about everyone must clear the building including staff, so it was a little surprising," Walker said.
Despite signs prohibiting weapons, the VA does not have metal detectors in the building. Instead, VA police do random bag searches.
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They gave up for themselves but when they do something like this, they do it for all the other veterans.
Have we heard enough of them to know we have to change what we are doing?
To our veterans: #BreakTheSilence with words...not a gun! #TakeBackYourLife and fight to heal...not to leave!