|| Bronx, NY || Submitted: 2008-05-10
|| Total Cost:
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Veteran Moving for Medical Reasons
To Whom It May Concern:
Please help us. Please understand that if I sound a bit scatterbrained, it is because of my Traumatic Brain Injury which affects memory, focus, and organizational abilities. Some days are better than others, so please bear with me.
I am an Iraq war combat veteran. I was an infantry officer and served the country proudly in combat. However, I returned with several problems that have gotten progressively worse. I have Tuberculosis, Hepatis C (with serious damage to my liver), various other injuries (including spinal injuries), and I was just told I have TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury).
Between the TB treatment and the Hepatitis, most days I'm so weak and so sore all over that I can hardly get around. My wife has to help me out of bed. I'm 41 years old. I still have the chemo to look forward to.
My wife makes a small income which is our sole support. Our new baby girl arrived on the 29th of April and she is a blessing. She had the cord wrapped around her neck three times and if she had been delivered naturally would have likely died. She is very beautiful and a real good baby.
I'm disgusted with the fact that my love (the Military) has abandoned me when I need them the most. I have applied for VA benefits, but I don't know when I'll be approved.
With the baby here, it is way too cramped for us in the efficiency unit we're in. For months we have fought with the landlord over things like not having hot water all the time. Also, the windows to the fire escape don't work. You can't control the heat. There are roaches and mice and rats from the neighbors. No matter how clean we are, we can't control what comes from next door. Also, it is a long distance from the VA hospital where I have to be on a regular basis.
There is an apartment right across the street from the VA. It would be really good because when I'm most sick or hurting, I can't drive. But I could crawl a block if I had to to the hospital. Often, also because of the high price of gas I just can't afford to put gas in my car. So I sit at home when I should be at the hospital.
I'm not a New Yorker, so don't even think that I can do the Subways alone especially with the way I get confused these days. The apartment is also a lot bigger so it would be great for our baby. And the place just smells clean when you walk in. All around, it would be a godsend for us if we could get into that apartment.
However we need first month's rent money, which we can't swing because we are paying rent here too. We can pay the deposit. But because we are paying other bills, too, it will be near impossible to pay all of the money required to get into the place.
This is all so demoralizing. I was a strong INFANTRY Officer. Now, I'm depending on others.
The VA disability will come and I will have 2 years of back pay, but there is no guarantee of when that will happen.
I was always a proud National Guardsman and, in my civilian job, I worked on offshore oil wells. Unfortunately, I can't do either of those things now.
I'm just asking that you please consider helping us. We really could use a hand UP. We need this apartment so we can take the next step - not only in dealing with my health, but in being a little closer to eventual independence. The Iraq war coordinator at the VA told me I need to be there every day to speed up my claim. There's just no way I can be unless I'm close buy.
There is plenty I could say and plenty going on. But as I said, I get scatterbrained. It took me a couple days just to get this typed out. It's frustrating that I used to be able to make command decisions and have 50 different things working out in my head and now its physically and mentally hard to even type an email.
Also, I see that a lot of times it's just small donations that make a difference. So, I want to see if we can help too. I feel like even if I'm in need of so much, I can still spend 5 or 10 dollars here and there. I mean, when your broke anyway, what's a few dollars? Especially if it could be the couple of dollars that helps someone else.
So I will close with the following: Thank you for everything you've done and what you may be able to do. It is amazing to know there are still good people in this country that I love so much. Thanks.
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