Veterans Benefits Information guide to VA benefits

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Veterans Benefits Information

VA Posts Online List of Ships Associated with Presumptive Agent Orange Exposure

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Veterans who served aboard U.S. Navy and Coast Guard ships operating on the waters of Vietnam between January 9, 1962, and May 7, 1975, may be eligible to receive Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) disability compensation for 14 medical conditions associated with presumptive exposure to Agent Orange.

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VA's Telephone Service Helps Family Members Encourage Veterans to Seek Medical Care

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The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has launched a telephone service, Coaching into Care, to provide assistance to family members and friends trying to encourage their Veteran to seek health care for possible readjustment and mental health issues.

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Wounded Vets Try Paragliding From Wheelchairs

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New programs have sprung up offering extreme sports for the disabled, many of them veterans, whose bodies are badly injured but whose souls still crave adventure.

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Wounded Iraqi Veterans Oppose Law Cutting Benefits

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Former soldiers and police officers in Iraq oppose a new law that raises the salaries of those on active duty but reduces benefits to the wounded.

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Walmart CEO: ‘Renewal is about jobs’

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Walmart U.S. President and CEO Bill Simon, who spent 25 years in the U.S. Navy, says he will never forget what the "salty old sea captain" of his first destroyer told him when he reported for duty at the age of 22. "He sat me down. He looked me in the eye. He said, ‘I want you to know I trust you, that your country is counting on you, and that while we might make mistakes, we're all in this together.' Then he said, ‘Get out there and do your job.'"

Simon called those words "one of the most enduring gifts I got from my service. The confidence we gained in ourselves, the ability to do things we never thought imaginable, and what we can do together, is what America needs today. It's what we need to bottle and deliver to our country."

Now responsible for more than 3,700 Walmart stores and 1.3million employees across the United States, Simon urged thousands of veterans gathered Wednesday for the 93rd National Convention of The American Legion in Minneapolis to help lead an "American Renewal" that can spring from the talents and capabilities of the newest generation of veterans.

Walmart's commitment to that effort, he explained, includes approximately 100 new and expanded stores and 15,000 new jobs across the country this year, with more growth expected to be announced in October. He said Walmart and the Walmart Foundation will also double its commitment to veteran job-training and entrepreneurship programs from $10 million to $20 million through 2015.

"We love to hire veterans," he said. "Veterans not only have a record of performance under pressure, but they are educated and technologically savvy, quick learners, and team players."

Simon said the corporation is using a dedicated website - - to attract veteran applicants and hire them. Among its features, the site provides searchable job listings as well as guidance about how to convert military experience into fulfilling careers. He added that whenever the spouse of a servicemember has to leave a Walmart job due to a military transfer, the spouse is offered another Walmart job in the new location.

"Today, after 10 years of war, there's a new group of American men and women coming home, ready to lead us in the next American renewal," Simon told the Legionnaires. "I've got to tell you about this generation. They are incredible. When I signed up to serve, we knew combat was a possibility. For this generation, it's a probability. Two, three, four deployments, and still they answer the call of duty. They are why I am confident everything is going to be OK."

He said it is up to the nation at home "to create conditions for their success, so that when they come home, they can lead us to a better day. With respect to jobs, now is not a time to retreat or wait. Now is the time to tackle our problems head-on.

"I am proud of the jobs we have at Walmart," he added. "Inside our stores every day, the American dream comes to life. Last year, we promoted more than 140,000 hourly associates, which is like giving all of Dayton, Ohio, a promotion.

"We're not waiting on government, businesses, or anyone else," Simon said. "Frankly, if your business plan involves waiting for somebody else, I wish you all the best."

There are some things the government could do to "put the wind at our backs," Simon explained. "First and foremost, we can start by taking care of our veterans when they come home. It's our moral obligation, yes, but they have so much to offer our country. We need to promote American exports because more exports mean more jobs; there's a couple of free-trade agreements that are ready to go. Let's pass them and get on with it. Third, we need a comprehensive reform of our corporate tax code to broaden the tax base and lower the overall tax rate. This will unleash America's job creators."


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Did you know?

A veteran’s family must request a United States flag.

A flag is provided at no cost to drape the casket or accompany the urn of a deceased veteran. Generally, the flag is given to the next of kin. Only one flag may be provided per veteran. Upon the request of the family, an “Application for United States Flag for Burial Purposes” (VA Form 21-2008) must be submitted along with a copy of the veteran’s discharge papers. Flags may be obtained from VA regional offices and most U.S. Post Offices.