American Veteran News 03.02.16

Former Marine, Wife Use Experience Of Traumatic Injury To Help Others — FOX NEWS Justin and Dahlia Constantine had only known each other for a few months when he was deployed with his Marine Corps unit to Iraq in summer of 2006. They had met while taking a Spanish class in Argentina, where he had mentioned that he was a lawyer in the Marines but hadn’t been deployed before. Less than two months after arriving in Al Anbar Province, Justin was shot by an enemy sniper behind his left ear, with the bullet exploding while exiting through his mouth. “I talked to everyone who was involved that day, apparently I was awake and I was still functioning at the time, trying to fight when I was in shock,” Justin, 46, told “I remember a little from that morning but I don’t remember from the site when I was shot, I don’t remember walking in to the aid station and communicating with doctors or anything like that.” A medic performed an emergency tracheotomy on Justin, saving his life during the live firefight. He was eventually airlifted to Landstuhl, Germany, which is when Dahlia, then enrolled in a doctoral program in Cambridge, England, would learn about his injury.

List Of Suicides At Phoenix VA Shows Exactly How These Veterans Were Let Down — DAILY CALLER A group known as the Concerned Employees of the Phoenix VA has issued a letter Sunday containing a list of veteran suicides at the hospital, as well as the specific lapses in care which led to veteran despondency. After giving several examples of abysmal failure at the Phoenix VA, the group decided to lay it all out on the table in a single bold pronouncement, according to the letter, obtained Tuesday by The Daily Caller News Foundation. “The Phoenix VAMC is the worst VA medical center in the country. It is an embarrassment to those brave men and women who have served who try to get care here … Can you imagine getting the courage to go to the Phoenix VA after hearing the horrible but true stories day after day over the past two years?” “Below are a small sample of veterans who have committed suicide … Please look at their obituaries, look at their faces,” the letter continued. “This is what happens right here in Phoenix when veterans are lost in a broken system and administrators lie to cover it up much harder than they do to try and first admit there is a problem but then actually fix it.” Concerned Employees want veterans at the Phoenix VA who committed suicide never to be forgotten and for their lives to mean something.

At Minimum It Will Take Nearly A Year to Fire Drunk VA Nurse Who Operated On Veteran — DAILY CALLER The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has commenced disciplinary action against a drunk nurse who operated on a veteran, but what officials didn’t say is that it will take almost an entire year of administrative procedure to actually punish the nurse.

Officials confirmed to the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs it will take no less than 270 days to punish Richard J. Pieri, the 59-year-old nurse who was charged with reckless endangerment, driving under the influence and being drunk in public, according to an email obtained by The Daily Caller News Foundation.

Pieri operated on a veteran after he had chugged back at least four or five beers while at the Mohegan Sun Pocono casino.

“I wish I had an easier answer but I do not,” a VA official said in the email.

“The minimum amount of time that it takes is 270 days from the date of issuance of the proposed major adverse action, but it takes time to gather the evidence and write the proposal notice prior to its issuance,” the official continued. “Extensions of these timelines are often granted during the reply period to the proposal notice and during the appeal process, at the appellant’s request, in order to ensure the appellant’s due process is not violated so as to cause a 3rd party to overturn the decision in federal court.”

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