NORMAN — We are recognizing a volunteer who has helped many veterans receive the benefits that they are eligible for from Veterans Administration. Robert Staples has been with us for the last four years helping veterans of all ages. Robert served in the United States Marines, enlisting as a private and retiring as a colonel. He and his wife, Cherie, make their home in Norman.
Last week, we had two emergencies where the Goldsby Fire and Rescue crew were called along with ambulances from Norman. Two men became ill and fainted. Both of them were transported to area hospitals, where they were reported in good condition. I would like to commend the Goldsby Fire Department for the quick response and treatment that both of these veterans received. Several months back, I had a couple of emergencies where Goldsby was the first responder. Guess they did pretty good, or I might not be here.
We helped 103 veterans and widows with their claims last week. Nine surviving spouses (widows) applied for DIC or pension benefits based on their husband’s military service. If you have questions about possible benefits, call Shirley at 361-9322 or me at 550-8806. We encourage all surviving spouses to stop by for a visit about possible VA benefits.
Six veterans received the 100 percent rating for their service-connected disabilities that were caused by or aggravated by military service. There also are benefits for the spouse and children of those veterans rated at the 100 percent rate. One of the best is going to be the education benefits for those who are enrolled in college. I have heard that some children of a 100 percent disabled veteran can receive up to a $1,000 per month for full-time studies. For those of you over age of 22, check with your school’s VA office.
The benevolence fund was used to assist several veterans and surviving spouses with rents, food items, medical testing and a host of other needs. We have been giving gift cards for gas purchase at Walmart stores to those surviving spouses and veterans who are in need. To assist with the benevolence fund, Jerry Baxter can be reached at 833-0773.