JULY 29, 2020
Dale K. Graham Veterans Foundation Weekly Newsletter
A LETTER FROM DALE K. GRAHAM
Today we would like to pay tribute and honor the late Colonel Joseph S. King, as our Veteran of the Week. Colonel King was one of the rare individuals who was always ready to do whatever he could to help his fellow man. He passed away on June 24, 2020, surrounded by his loving wife Jeanne, their six children and extended family.
His service to his country included a distinguished 28-year military career in the US Army, including a combat tour in Vietnam. He received several awards and decorations, among them the Bronze Star and three Air Medals. He was inducted into the University of Oklahoma ROTC Wall of Fame for his Army service to the United States.
“I am a very lucky man,” King wrote in a memoir. “I am lucky in the things of life that are the most important — my family, my faith and my country.” We are proud to honor Colonel King as one of our own.
As most everyone is aware, the virus continues to prevent our volunteers from being at our foundation each Tuesday and Thursday to assist the many veterans and surviving spouses who need assistance with their VA claims and questions. One of the things that has not changed is the number of veterans whose claims are in the appeals process. These can either be at the Board of Veterans Appeals in Washington DC or with the Decision Review Officers.
BVA video conferencing is occuring with the judge, the veteran, and us at our location. Since the first of January, we have had approximately 100 of these where we represent the veteran or their surviving spouse with their application for VA benefits. We also have hearings with the Decision Review Officers that are done by phone where we describe in detail why we believe that the VA failed to grant service-connection of a disability.
During one our recent hearings, a surviving spouse received back pay to 2013. This was in response to our request for the VA to substitute her in her husband’s veteran claim after he had died. She will also be eligible to receive DIC benefits along with the Champ VA medical insurance.
We are continuing to work veterans claims that are mailed to our PO Box 592, Washington, Oklahoma 73093 address. When you are sending your DBQ’s or other types of medical evidence, please include a photocopy of your DD-214 and a copy of your last percentage letter from the VA in your packet. If you have been denied for any claim prior, also send a copy of the denial letter from the VA. Before sending us your DBQs or other medical evidence, please complete the 3 forms located on our website.
As it takes significantly longer for our volunteers to process each claim, it is going to be a while before we are caught up. We are not open for veterans and surviving spouses and will not be until it is deemed safe for both the veterans and our volunteers.
Dale K. Graham, VA Accredited Claims Agent
Dale K. Graham Veterans Foundation
BY THE NUMBERS
Last week 10 veterans received a disability rating of 100% for their service-connected disabilities. This group will receive a combined annual $418,776. They will also be eligible for the state benefits of sales tax exemptions, property tax exemptions, and other benefits that our state provides for disabled veterans.
13 veterans were awarded disability ratings from 10% to 90% and will receive a combined annual $263,432. This group of men and women will be eligible for VA Health Care, and some of them may also be eligible for other state benefits. 1 surviving spouse was awarded benefits totaling $15,757 a year.
If you would like to help us make a difference, we welcome your support. We spend over $30,000 each month in direct support of the veterans and family members we serve. We transport many homeless veterans to our Norman location each week to help make a difference in the lives of the men and women who have served in the military.
As you know, we are a 501 (c) 3 non-profit and are wholly dependent on donations from the people we serve and local grants. We are not funded by a government entity, all the funds it takes to operate our facility and to assist veterans with medical testing, and other expenses come in the form of grants from local companies or other veterans.
For those of you who would like to support the program, your gifts are always appreciated and may be tax-exempt. You can shop items from our Amazon charity list to stock our food pantry and shop AmazonSmile with us as the charity – we will receive .5% of your eligible purchases.
If you are interested in including us in a gift, please contact Lora at 405-550-8806, ext. 101. Monetary donations can be made online or mailed to PO Box 592, Washington, OK, 73093.