Saturday, February 25, 2017

Veteran's Wife Gets Justice When He Couldn't Fight for Himself

VA awards full benefits to veteran with Alzheimer's and PTSD after wife shares his story
By CB Cotton/Lindsay Oliver
Feb 23, 2017
"We had to have one of our examiners review that medical report, review the other evidence that they may have had, and really render an opinion that the veteran had PTSD," says Mark Bilosz, the director. "They were not able to disassociate the symptoms between the PTSD and the Alzheimer's, but basically once they diagnosed PTSD, we rated that and were able to grant 100 percent disability based on all the veteran's symptoms."
ONSLOW COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) - A local woman is facing a difficult battle - she is losing the man she loves. He's a man who served our country for more than 20 years in the Marines and now he's battling Alzheimer's disease.

After fighting to get benefits for her husband's care from the VA, things changed for the better after sharing her story with WITN.

"I asked him, 'Is my name Jeanette' and he said 'No' and I said, 'Well, am I your wife?' and he said 'Yes'," Jeanette Martinez says.

She says she and William were a happy family, raising two daughters, one adopted and one biological with Down syndrome. They've been married for 43 years.

She says in 2006, William, who served more than 20 years in the Marines, was starting to forget.

"We got the diagnosis in the 2008 that he had early onset dementia," Jeanette says. "It was devastating to both of us. It was the first time I saw my husband cry."

William was just 55 years old when diagnosed and was put on memory medications, medications that Jeanette says bought them time.

"As it progressed, the bad days were getting longer, but you could see the frustration, it's like he knew he didn't know and it frustrated him terribly," she explains.
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