Showing posts with label Tennessee. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tennessee. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 4, 2023

“Thoughts and prayers are useless to dead children"

Nashville police: School shooter planned attack for months

April 3, 2023

The crowd outside the Capitol echoed chants such as “thoughts and prayers are not enough” and sang along to songs like “All You Need is Love” – adding to it, “and action!” At one point, they sat for a moment of silence, raising posters above their heads that read, “Thoughts and prayers are useless to dead children,” “Book bags not body bags,” and “2nd graders over 2nd amendment.” Some students wore orange shooting-target stickers on their shirts.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — As students across Nashville walked out of class on Monday to protest gun violence at the Tennessee Capitol following a school shooting last week, police said the person who killed six people, including three 9-year-old children, had been planning the massacre for months.

Police have not established a motive for the shootings at The Covenant School, a small Christian elementary school where the 28-year-old shooter was once a student, according to a Monday news release from the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department. Both Nashville police and FBI agents continue to review writings left behind by Audrey Hale, both in Hale’s vehicle and home, police said.

“It is known that Hale considered the actions of other mass murderers,” police said.

The three children who were killed in the shooting were Evelyn Dieckhaus, Hallie Scruggs and William Kinney. The three adults were Katherine Koonce, 60, the head of the school, custodian Mike Hill, 61, and 61-year-old substitute teacher Cynthia Peak.
read more here

When will it ever be enough? When will people understand that doing nothing to prevent children from being killed in school is part of the cause?

We are raising multi-generational survivors of mass murderers who were given the guns to do it. There is absolutely nothing any politician can say, no one else to blame, no other finger to point toward anyone else but themselves. Tennessee just made it easier for them to get more guns!

Thoughts and prayers change nothing when they are not followed by action. The next time you hear one of the lawmakers say thoughts and prayers, try chanting that our thoughts will be known with our votes and we pray you never hold office again! When all those kids walked out of classes to stand up for themselves, they showed more courage than the cowards too afraid of the NRA to take a stand for the sake of the children they claim to care so much about. Remember these are the same freaks screaming about books to fear, drag shows to be horrified by, births they want to force, and words they don't want to hear. Parents have words they don't want to hear too. Like their child will not need to worry about their grades anymore because they didn't make it home from school alive!

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

GOP Rep. Burchett said, "You can't legislate evil," with serious face?

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
March 29, 2023

Tennessee congressman says Washington is ‘not going to fix’ school shootings NBC News 

A politician said, "You can't legislate evil." Apparently, he does not understand that is exactly what people are elected to do. If it was not their job, then they wouldn't have a job.
"As per the Constitution, the U.S. House of Representatives makes and passes federal laws. The House is one of Congress’s two chambers (the other is the U.S. Senate), and part of the federal government’s legislative branch. The number of voting representatives in the House is fixed by law at no more than 435, proportionally representing the population of the 50 states."

The fact that there are courts to hold people accountable under the laws they have legislated and punishment under the laws they legislated, seems to have evaporated when they are asked to do something to stop schools from being turned into slaughterhouses. Parents shouldn't have to worry about their kids coming home alive at the end of their classes. Their classes shouldn't have to include active shooter training because legislators refuse to do a damn thing to protect children!

They want to claim that evil people do the shootings. That mentally ill people are the ones using the weapons created to slaughter as many as they can as fast as they can. Why is no one asking them why they feel the need to legislate the ability of the evil and mentally ill to get more guns then? Why would it make sense to them to arm those they point their fingers at?

There would be no prisons if they couldn't legislate evil. There would be no need for law enforcement if the legislators did not legislate and fund them. There would be no lawyers holding the accused people accountable and defending those charged with the crimes that were legislated.

These same people claim to be religious, however, their actions cause them to fail the bite test.
Unraveling the Forbidden Fruit Apple Motif In the next chapter of Genesis in the Old Testament, this stanza describes the temptation of Adam and Eve: "When the woman saw that the tree was good for eating and a delight to the eyes and that the tree was desirable as a source of wisdom, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave some to her husband, and he ate.” These two sentences have been used since they were first written down as a metaphorical reference to any indulgence or pleasure that the dogmas of religion deem illegal or immoral. The Hebrew word used for fruit here is “peri,” a generic term referring to the fruit hanging from the Tree of Knowledge. And they are still heavily referenced today in conversations, novels, and films. Modern scholars and historians believe that a bastardization and possible misinterpretation of Latin might answer the question, “Why the Apple?” The Latin word mălum signifies “ evil,” while the Latin word mālum, from the Greek μῆλον, means “apple.”
Watch the video for yourself and hear what Rep. Burchett said about not being able to legislate guns. He said, "You can't legislate evil." They seem to act that way when it comes to guns but not when it comes to everything else, like the personal freedom of parents to raise their kids as they see fit. The personal freedom to decide the moral code they want to live by. They seek to legislate every day on what matters to them, what will give them the most support/donations from their supporters, but not when it comes to doing anything for the sake of what this country was supposed to stand for.

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

We hear them say the empty words "thoughts and prayers"

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
March 28, 2023

Yesterday another school shooting and yet again, politicians offered empty thoughts and prayers. 

Thoughts and prayers without action are as worthless as thinking and praying you'll win the lottery but never buy a ticket!

That's all they did. What is more appalling is that they are the ones passing laws to remove all restrictions. We need to ask ourselves what it will take for them to actually care enough to save the kids. Will it take it happening to one of their children or grandchildren before they decide to value their lives enough to do something?

This is a poll from The Hill taken in February.
Among political party lines, 54 percent of Republican or Republican-leaning Independent respondents said they are satisfied with the nation’s laws and policies on handguns, while 44 percent of those surveyed expressed their dissatisfaction with current law.

On the other side, 84 percent of Democrats and Democratic-leaning Independents expressed their dissatisfaction with the nation’s laws and policies, while 14 percent of those surveyed said they are satisfied with the nation’s current policies.

Around 60 percent of Independent respondents express their dissatisfaction with the nation’s laws and firearm policies, while 36 percent of those surveyed said they are satisfied.
As you just read the majority of people in this country want the laws changed, but Republicans, on the other hand, are satisfied. Seriously? Satisfied with what? Of the results?

Over and over again, we hear them say the empty words "thoughts and prayers" from Republicans but have no desire to do something about proving they care. Why should they when the majority of their party is happy with the results?

Aren't they the same people screaming about moral values? Moral values when it comes to wanting to control what you do in your own private life? Moral values when they want to control what your kids read in schools and in the local library but not the number of bullets that can be shot into their bodies while in those schools? Moral values when they want to prevent your right to free speech when you say things they don't want to hear? Moral values when they want to control what you believe because you don't have the same "faith" they do? Moral values when they want to control who gets to be able to vote and if that vote gets counted should it go against them?

These same politicians seem to have no problem blaming mental illness to explain why mass murders happen but never seem to be able to explain why on earth would they want to expand their ability to purchase weapons created to kill as many as possible as fast as possible. Not that that is an acceptable excuse since mental illness is a human illness and is across the globe but we are the only country that allows our kids to be slaughtered to the point where parents cry dropping them off at school because they don't know if their kid will go home again.

So what do we do? Do we turn our thoughts and prayers into action? Do we flood their offices, emails, and social media accounts with demands they do something about this or do we just toss our hands in the air and say it isn't time to talk about it? Guess they're too busy offering thoughts and prayers while loading their own guns!

The Daily Mail covered this guy's Christmas card and added what he said about the Covenant School shooting. Stunning!
The Covenant School was already full of thoughts and prayers since it is a private Christian School.

This is from NPR
Mayor John Cooper said Nashville was joining the "dreaded, long list" of cities and towns that have suffered school shootings.

"My heart goes out to the families of the victims," Cooper said. "Our entire city stands with you."

Tennessee state Rep. Bob Freeman, whose district includes the school, said it was "an unimaginable tragedy for the victims, all the children, families, teachers, staff and my entire community. I live around the corner from Covenant and pass by it often. I have friends who attend both church and school there. I have also visited the church in the past. It tears my heart apart to see this," WPLN reported.

State Sen. Jeff Yarbro, who represents Nashville, said on Twitter: "My heart breaks for the families at Covenant. As a parent, I both ache for them and rage with them that fear of this kind of tragedy is just accepted as just part of what it means to raise kids these days."

Monday, March 27, 2023

Tennessee more afraid of books than bullets in schools?

Feel free to use this!

Consider this!
Pulitzer Prize-winning novel banned:'Maus' sales soar after book is banned by Tennessee school board

On April 28, the Tennessee House and Senate passed legislation that gives Tennessee control over what books are offered in schools. This gives school boards the power to veto and alter curriculum decisions.
That was from USA Today about when libraries were fighting back against the school board banning books they didn't like.

Think about how much time they took to review the books they didn't want anyone else to read. Now think about how much time they didn't use to protect kids in schools from being shot to death!

It happened again today in Nashville Tennessee. This time it was an elementary school. Not just a school for little kids, but a private Christian school. The same people use their "moral values" to attack personal choices and then say the problem in schools today is God was kicked out of public schools can no longer use that as something to hide behind.

The fact that we are supposed to be free from any politician pushing their own faith over everyone else has no longer dawned on them they not only have no right to control the faith of anyone else, but God also gave all of us the free will to decide for ourselves.

When they are so afraid of words in books but not bullets in guns, they have no moral values!

Now consider this, Gun bill that allows for long gun carrying, lowers permit age to 18 passes House committee was reported on March 16, 2023 by WKRN News!
This week House Bill 1005 by Rep. Rusty Grills (R—Newbern) would allow Tennesseans with an enhanced or a concealed carry permit to carry long guns, including AR-15 rifles or shotguns. Currently, state law prohibits people with those permits from carrying anything more than handguns. The proposed bill would replace all instances of “handguns” in the code to “firearms.”

6 killed in Nashville Christian grade school shooting; police believe suspect was former student

A female shooter wielding two “assault-style” rifles and a pistol killed three students and three adults at a private Christian school in Nashville on Monday in the latest in a series of mass shootings in a country growing increasingly unnerved by bloodshed in schools.

Police said they believe the 28-year-old female shooter was a former student at The Covenant School, a Presbyterian school founded in 2001. Police shot and killed her. Investigators were searching her Nashville-area home.

The attack at The Covenant School — which has about 200 students from preschool through sixth grade, as well as roughly 50 staff members — comes as communities around the nation are reeling from a spate of school violence, including the massacre at elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, last year; a first grader who shot his teacher in Virginia; and a shooting last week in Denver that wounded two administrators.
read more here

Thursday, February 2, 2023

The late Captain James ‘Dustin’ Samples of the Cleveland Fire Department may still save lives

TN lawmakers name act after firefighter who died after long PTSD battle

FOX 17 Nashville
by Sydney Keller
Monday, January 30th, 2023

"We can’t legislate away traumatic accidents and emergencies, but we can remove obstacles to getting support when firefighters need it. Addressing the crisis of PTSD and suicide in the fire service requires a commitment to both prevention and treatment from all stakeholders and that’s what SB856 aims to do."

Two Tennessee Republican lawmakers filed an act Monday which aims at providing support for firefighters who are diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

State Sen. Paul Bailey (R-Sparta) and Rep. Johnny Garrett (R-Goodlettsville) filed the James ‘Dustin’ Samples Act in honor of Captain James ‘Dustin’ Samples of the Cleveland Fire Department who sadly committed suicide in 2020 after a long-time battle with PTSD.

Sen. Bailey says that lawmakers owe it to firefighters and those who work to save lives to do all they can to prevent any risk of injury on the job.
read more here

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Minnesota’s lieutenant governor, Peggy Flanagan lost Marine veteran brother to COVID-19

Minnesota Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan says coronavirus killed her Marine brother

Fox News
By Robert Gearty
March 24, 2020
“THIS is why we must #StayHome,” Flanagan wrote. “If you feel fine, that’s great. But please consider the possibility that you’re carrying the virus and don’t know it, and then you walk past the next Ron, my big brother, in public. COVID-19 now has a personal connection to me. Please do all you can to prevent one for you.”

A man who died of the coronavirus in Tennessee over the weekend had served in the Marines and was the older brother of Minnesota’s lieutenant governor, Peggy Flanagan.

She shared the sad news in an Instagram post Sunday night, Fox 9 Minneapolis reported.

“To many, he’ll be a statistic: Tennessee’s second COVID-related death,” she wrote. “But to me, I’ll remember a loving, older brother, uncle, father and husband.”
read it here

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Female veteran with PTSD from sexual assault rejected 11 times for service dog!

Service dog helps military sexual assault survivor

News 5
By: Alexandra Koehn
February 23, 2020
"I received 11 rejection letters from programs across the country because my PTSD came from military sexual assault and not from combat. With every one of those rejection letters, it felt more and more crushing." Stefanie Marvin-Miller
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WTVF) — A military sexual assault survivor said a service dog has helped her heal from post traumatic stress disorder.

Stefanie Marvin-Miller was the first female in her family to serve our country, but that service led to a dark time in her life.

"In January of 2016, I was the victim of a violent sexual assault by another service member," Marvin-Miller said, "Military sexual assault, PTSD is very intense. It’s very real, and it’s valid. It’s a real problem."

Dealing with the impact of the traumatic event has been hard.

"It was a very difficult thing to do, and to speak up for, and say that happened," Marvin-Miller said, "For me specifically, it will be disassociating, so going back into a memory, and not feeling like I’m in the present anymore, or connected to the present."

She decided to apply for a service dog that would be capable of getting her to a safe place during an episode.

"I received 11 rejection letters from programs across the country because my PTSD came from military sexual assault and not from combat," Marvin-Miller said, "With every one of those rejection letters, it felt more and more crushing."
read it here

Saturday, February 1, 2020

Tennessee boasts 32 of the Medal of Honor Recipients

A look at Tennessee's Medal of Honor recipients and their stories

Chattanooga Times Free Press
by Sabrina Bodon
February 1st, 2020
The state of Tennessee boasts 32 of the medal's 3,525 honorees thus far, including a Signal Mountain native for whom the new Charles H. Coolidge National Medal of Honor Heritage Center is named.
Medal of Honor awards are displayed during the third annual Celebration of Valor luncheon at the Chattanooga Convention Center on Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019, in Chattanooga, Tenn. / Staff file photo

On multiple occasions, while awarding the Medal of Honor, President Harry S. Truman remarked, "I would rather have the blue band of the Medal of Honor around my neck than to be president of the United States." But when Congress attempted to award the badge to him in 1971, he wrote to the House that he did " ... not consider that I have done anything which should be the reason of any award, Congressional or otherwise."

Truman continued, saying the medal was for combat bravery, and awarding it to him would detract from that significance.

"This does not mean I do not appreciate what you and others have done, because I do appreciate the kind things that have been said and the proposal to have the award offered to me," Truman wrote. "Therefore, I close by saying thanks, but I will not accept a Congressional Medal of Honor."
Fifty-two medals have been awarded for acts of valor that occurred in and around Chattanooga, including one to Mary Edwards Walker, the only female recipient. read it here

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Wynonna Judd welcomed paralyzed veteran to new home

Paralyzed veteran gets free home in Murfreesboro

by: Stassy Olmos
Posted: Sep 22, 2019

“Five years ago, get a call two in the morning that he was in an accident all the way up in St. Louis,” Camacho’s friend Liam Cronin said in the ceremony Saturday, “Drive up the next day and spend the next day, and spend the next week sleeping on a hospital cot beside him.”
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) – It’s the simple things many of us take for granted, like getting in and out of bed or taking a shower all by ourselves, that paralyzed Army Sergeant Bryan Camacho hasn’t been able to do in years. ‘But, thanks to the nonprofit Homes for Our Troops, the solider now has a brand new home in Murfreesboro, with special amenities to help.

The Murfreesboro community welcomed their new neighbor on Saturday morning.
This homecoming much more encouraging than the last one 12 years ago when Sgt. Camacho returned from Iraq.

Camacho was first injured in 2007 as an Infantryman deployed with the 10th Mountain Division in Iraq. He was paralyzed from the waist down when his vehicle ran over an IED.
Slowly recovering in the U.S., Camacho was in another accident in 2014. His adapted truck spun out on ice and rolled, paralyzing him from the neck down.
read it here

Friday, September 20, 2019

Bodycam captured moment police officer saved man who jumped off bridge

Dramatic body camera video shows officers catch man who jumped off bridge

Emily Van de Riet, Digital Content Producer
Sep 18, 2019

(Meredith) – Newly-released body camera video shows officers in Tennessee clinging onto a man who jumped off a bridge.

The officers who saved the man in April are now being recognized for their quick actions.

Knox County Deputy Brian Rehg and Knoxville Police Lieutenant Chris McCarter both said they were at the right place at the right time.

Rehg, a 13-year police veteran, said he is used to being called to a scene after something tragic has already happened, but he’s not used to a situation where he saves someone from jumping.

“After 13 years of service and seeing all kinds of things, to actually save somebody like that… it feels good,” Rehg told WATE.
read it here

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Puppy with Missing Leg Adopted by Amputee Veteran

The military veteran, who lost his leg after an IED exploded, adopted a dog who had lost its leg

By Matt McNulty
August 03, 2019
Puppy with Missing Leg Adopted by Amputee Veteran: 'It's Impossible to Not Smile Around Him'

“It’s impossible to not smile around him,” Ferguson said. “Everybody’s so happy to see him, then they notice he’s got 3 legs. He’s happy you were overjoyed to see him, don’t pity him!”
A military veteran from Tennessee who lost his leg after an IED explosion found a new best friend after adopting a dog with a missing leg.

Joshua Ferguson took home three-legged Scooter on Thursday, after adopting the pup from the Humane Society of Dickson County in Dickson, according to WTVF in Nashville.

“He makes it easier for me to remember, hey it’s still a beautiful day,” Ferguson said Scooter. “You realize really just how tremendous a journey life is.”

Scooter was discovered with a severed leg in a wooded area at Johnson Creek near Burns, Tennessee, in June, with veterinarians believing the dog got his leg stuck and was forced to gnaw it off in order to free himself and find food, WTVF reported.

The dog’s mangled leg was eventually amputated at the Animal Medical Hospital.
read it here

Saturday, June 15, 2019

Abused Pit Bull and Disabled Veteran find healing together

New Beginning for Abused Pit Bull, Franky, and Combat Veteran

Clarksville Now
By Jessica Goldberg
June 15, 2019
Retired Sergeant Major Chris Self, is no stranger to overcoming adversity. An Army Special Forces veteran, Self has also served as a military police K-9 officer. In 2005, Self sustained gunshot wounds to both his legs. In 2006, he had to have his right leg amputated to return to active duty.
CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. (CLARKSVILLENOW) – What some thought may be the end of one dog’s life, turned into a beautiful new beginning. Courage, tenacity, and the strength to overcome brought one Fort Campbell solider and man’s best friend together. Franky, the pit bull discovered earlier this year suspected of being used as a bait dog, has finally found a forever home.

On Friday, Retired Army Sergeant Major, Chris Self, was surprised at Nashville International Airport with 18-month-old Franky. “It’s a boy,” shouted Dana Self, Chris Self’s wife. Chris Self bent down to meet his new companion.

Montgomery County Animal Control received a call April 14 to pick up a dog. What they saw shocked everyone. A pit bull with gruesome head injuries, including half his scalp missing and ear flaps ripped off. Maggots infested the open wounds. Bite marks surrounding his head, neck, and legs, coupled with the other injuries led authorities to believe this poor creature had been used as a bait dog in dog fighting.
read more here

Thursday, May 9, 2019

26 year old bit off finger of 71 year old Vietnam veteran he was fighting?

Tennessee man accused of biting off Vietnam vet's fingertip during argument

By: Bob D'Angelo, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
May 8, 2019

A Tennessee man is accused of biting off the fingertip of a Vietnam veteran during a fight outside a Dickson County convenience store, WKRN reported.

Dylan McKinney, 26, was arrested after the Sunday incident in Charlotte, Tennessee, the television station reported. The district attorney is investigating whether to charge McKinney with a hate crime after the alleged attack on the 71-year-old man, according to WKRN.

McKinney was charged with resisting arrest, disorderly conduct, public intoxication and aggravated assault. He remains in the Dickson County Jail in lieu of a $62,000 bond.

McKinney, who told the television station he had been drinking when the incident occurred, said the victim put his finger in his mouth. That’s when McKinney said he bit down.

“It sounds gruesome, but I don't regret biting a man's finger off when he stuck it in my mouth and tried to tear my jaw off,” McKinney told WKRN.

McKinney said he was wearing a hoodie with a Confederate symbol and the veteran, who is black, took offense and cursed at him.

The verbal fight soon turned physical, McKinney told the television station.

“My first thought, maybe he has a gun in there, and so I did everything I could to make sure he couldn't get to anything inside his truck,” McKinney told WKRN. “As far as the confrontation, I guess you would say, maybe I started that.

“We were fighting. I didn't have time to put his finger in my mouth and eat it. I'm not a cannibal or anything like that.”
read more here

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Tender moment when blindfolded son hears Dad's voice

Soldier surprises son with tearful homecoming during Taekwondo practice

March 19, 2019

LEBANON, Tenn. (WTHR) - A soldier posed as a sparring partner to surprise his young son in a tear-jerking homecoming surprise.
Nine-year-old Luca Cesternino had a blindfold on as he sparred during his Taekwondo class near Nashville Monday night. He had no idea his partner was his dad.

Once Tennessee Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Rob Cesternino called his son by his nickname, the boy stopped, asked "Daddy?" and ripped his blindfold off.

After seeing his father, Luca jumped into his arms for a tearful reunion.

SSG Cesternino was home after spending ten months serving in Jordan and southern Syria. He came home a few days earlier than Luca expected, setting the stage for the big surprise.

go here if video does not load because it is one that you'll be happy you watched.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Disabled Gulf War Veteran has VA benefits restored because reporter cared!

Disabled Campbell County veteran's VA benefits restored

By: Don Dare
Posted: Feb 14, 2019

LAFOLLETTE, Tenn. (WATE) - A disabled Campbell County veteran has had his VA benefits fully restored following a WATE 6 On Your Side investigation.

Mike Sanders is a Gulf War-era veteran. The former Army sergeant badly injured his back during his service and is now unable to work. From 1987-1994, he served as a research lab assistant with the Chemical Corps, and later as a field medic.

Two weeks ago, WATE reported that Mike Sanders was losing his benefits after earning 18 cents in salary in 2017. The VA took quick action to correct a mistake.
read more here

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Double amputee OEF OIF veteran driven to inspire!

Double amputee veteran chases truck driving dream

By: Adam Snider
Posted: Feb 14, 2019 12:07

CHRISTIANA, Tenn. (WKRN) - A dream decades in the making was nearly taken away from a local veteran.

"There's dark days out there. Depression, I've had to fight through them. But man, lately I've kind of forgotten about them." Erin Schaefer

Outside of Christiana though, for the last several weeks, he's worked to achieve this goal.

"My dad was a trucker so that's all I've known," said Erin Schaefer, an Army veteran who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan. "I just love the open road, being out there with the truck. Just myself and my thoughts."

Those thoughts sometimes take him back to the Army and his final term in Afghanistan.

It was on this trip in 2010, that he was in the wrong truck at the wrong time.

"Was out on a convoy taking supplies from one base to the next. Came to a halt because the other truck in the rear of our convoy had become disabled," he explained. "Started moving again, and the IED blast went off."

Erin is now an amputee, losing both his legs below the knee.

"There's dark days out there," he said. "Depression, I've had to fight through them. But man, lately I've kind of forgotten about them."

He's found new life, thanks in part to an old passion.

Erin is now seeking his CDL, at the Truck Driver Institute (TDI) outside Christiana.
read more here

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Representative Phil Roe thinks oversight of VA is waste of time?

Oversight of the VA is not a waste of time!

“That’s a waste of time,” Representative Phil Roe of Tennessee, the highest-ranking Republican on the committee, said in an interview last week about the group. “If they go big on that, it won’t be good.”
Mr. Roe, how the hell can you sit on this committee and say anything is a waste of time considering what the outcome has been for our disabled veterans?

This attitude is part of the reason veterans do not trust the government to do the right thing, or honor their side of the deal for the blank check they wrote on their lives.

Selling out the service of our veterans is deplorable and this investigation is part of what was pulled off against their best interest.

We have watched and waited after a long line of Administrations made speech after speech while our community heard excuses for the speeches turning out to be empty words delivered seeking our votes.

Enough! Someone has to start being held accountable for all that has gone wrong at the VA, just as what has gone right needs to be rewarded.

You say it is a waste of time? Is it a waste of time to learn exactly who benefited by these meetings? Is it a waste of time to discover why our veterans are still committing suicide and no one has a clue, or interest, in doing anything more than settling for speeches claiming they care or "awareness" campaigns that spread the misery instead of healing?

Maybe you also consider it a waste of time while for profit healthcare business make money while for years members of the Congress have been telling citizens how lousy our healthcare is, but now it is OK to kick veterans into the same system and it will be good for them?


Your waste of time is FUBAR! Maybe you should read exactly what the House Veterans Affairs Committee is actually responsible for?
Our Jurisdiction
Committee on Veterans’ Affairs is as follows:

(1) Veterans’ measures generally.
(2) Cemeteries of the United States in which veterans of any war or conflict are or may be buried, whether in the United States or abroad (except cemeteries administered by the Secretary of the Interior).
(3) Compensation, vocational rehabilitation, and education of veterans.
(4) Life insurance issued by the Government on account of service in the Armed Forces.
(5) Pensions of all the wars of the United States, general and special.
(6) Readjustment of servicemembers to civil life.
(7) Servicemembers’ civil relief.
(8) Veterans’ hospitals, medical care, and treatment of veterans.

House Democrats, Newly Empowered, Turn Their Investigations on Veterans Affairs

New York Times
Jennifer Steinhauer
February 8, 2019

According to a report last year by the nonprofit investigative news organization ProPublica, the three pressured Mr. Trump’s first veterans secretary, David J. Shulkin, then peppered him with demands before ultimately working with personnel in the department to oust him. The group also pushed — in most cases, unsuccessfully — for certain vendors to manage health care records, and had a direct line to the president.

WASHINGTON — The new Democratic leadership of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee said Friday that it would investigate the influence exerted by three members of President Trump’s Florida beach club on the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The move was viewed as an early, and powerful, indication that the committee, which has always been known as among the most bipartisan on Capitol Hill, could adopt a harder edge under the new Congress as empowered Democrats move to scrutinize the administration.

The investigation was announced in a letter to Robert Wilkie, the secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, from Representative Mark Takano, Democrat of California, the new chairman of the committee. Mr. Takano requested documents and “information about alleged improper influence” of the members, Isaac Perlmutter, Bruce Moskowitz and Marc Sherman, “over policy and personnel decisions of the Department of Veterans Affairs.”

Mr. Takano said the three men exerted inappropriate influence over procurement at the sprawling department.
read more here

Thursday, January 31, 2019

"It doesn't go away at the end of the shift."

'I remember every tragic thing I've seen' - Local firefighters open up about mental health

News Channel 9
Kayla Strayer
January 30, 2019
"The worst things that I've personally seen are burn injuries to children," Hyman said. "Trauma to children, those are some of the worst ones."
The Chattanooga Fire Department launched a peer support program in an effort to help firefighters deal with the mental stress of their jobs. (Image: Jim Lewis)

It doesn't go away at the end of the shift. 

"I remember every tragic thing I've seen, especially kids," Lewis said.

Suicides among first responders are on the rise, says Chattanooga Fire Chief Phil Hyman.

"Our firefighter suicides throughout the nation have actually exceeded the line of duty deaths that we have," Chief Hyman said. "In 2017 we had 103 firefighter suicides, and only 93 line of duty deaths."

First responders deal with death and destruction, sometimes on a daily basis.

"We expose our members to a lot of bad stuff that's the nature of our job," Hyman said. "Most of the stuff you see you can't unsee."

Dallas Bay Volunteer Firefighter and Chaplain Jim Lewis says, "It's a slideshow in your head."

A sickening slideshow of tragic images.
read more here

Monday, January 21, 2019

Unclaimed Tennessee veterans laid to rest with honor

Unclaimed veterans buried with dignity, thanks to strangers

The Associated Press
By: Adrian Sainz, Karen Pulfer Focht
January 20, 2019

Soldiers Arnold M. Klechka, 71, Wesley Russell, 76, and Marine Charles B. Fox, 60, were laid to rest in a service attended by about 700 people at West Tennessee Veterans Cemetery in Memphis on Thursday. There was a gun salute, and a bagpiper played “Amazing Grace.”
In this Jan. 17, 2019, photo, a retired U.S. Marine master gunnery sergeant salutes three Memphis veterans, Wesley Russell, 76, Arnold Klechka, 71, Charles Fox, 60, who died this past fall and whose remains were unclaimed, in Memphis, Tenn. (Karen Pulfer Focht/AP)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — When the flags were removed from the caskets and folded with military precision, there were no family members there to receive them.

So, the banners were passed, hand-to-hand, through the crowd.

Some mourners wept as they clutched the flags briefly. Others kissed them. But the three veterans laid to rest on a rainy Memphis morning were strangers to most of those who gathered to honor their memory.

The service was part of a national effort by funeral homes, medical examiners, state and federal veterans' affairs departments, and local veterans' groups to pay final respects to members of the military whose bodies were not claimed by any relatives. Since 2000, Dignity Memorial and other funeral homes in more than 30 cities have organized about 3,000 funerals for soldiers, sailors and Marines who died alone, but still deserved a dignified funeral and burial, said Jeff Berry, Dignity's general manager in Knoxville.
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Thursday, November 22, 2018

Caring for triple amputee "part of spousal duty" to VA?

Nashville VA reinstates triple amputee veteran's full-time caregiver services after Tennessean report

Nashville Tennessean
Yihyun Jeong
Nov. 21, 2018

A triple amputee veteran will have his full-time caregiver services reinstated after the Tennessean reported Wednesday that the Nashville VA initially decided to deny the level of his caregiver's benefits.
Staff Sergeant J.D. Williams lost his right arm and both legs while deployed with the 101st Airborne Division in Afghanistan in 2010.

He was discharged and sent home, where his wife, Ashlee Williams, was assigned and paid by the VA to be his caregiver.

But after six years, she wrote on Facebook on Nov. 17, the VA decided to lower her husband to the lowest tier of the program, determining that he no longer needs a full-time caregiver.

She claimed that the VA assumed that the care she provided her husband, including helping her husband with applying prosthetics and lifting him into a wheelchair about 10 times a day, was part of her "spousal duty."

"...should have been included on the marriage certificate according to the VA," Ashlee Williams wrote in a post that was shared more than 25,000 times on Facebook by Wednesday morning.
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