Helping veterans with paperwork, questions and other concerns is what brought the Disabled American Veterans mobile van to St. Joseph. Joseph Braun says they focus mainly on VA benefits. He says in some cases, veterans qualify for benefits but don't know about them.
"A lot of veterans we deal with are Vietnam and there's certain conditions out there related back to Agent Orange exposure from being in Vietnam that some of them veterans are not even aware of," said Braun, senior national service officer for the DAV.
Kim Brown says her husband has a chronic illness after being exposed to Agent Orange. Brown says she wasn't sure what to do but with help from the DAV her husband now receives proper care.
"Everyone involved in my husband's health situation has been remarkable. They're there for us 24 hours a day both physically and emotionally," added Brown.
Despite what's happening with the VA on a national level, here in Missouri the DAV says they want to serve as many veterans as possible.
Braun says this week they've helped 50 veterans get aide through mobile services. That's 50 people they otherwise would not have been able to reach.
"That's what's good about the DAV and the mobile service office. We get the opportunity to go out throughout the state to some of the smaller towns to inform veterans," added Braun.
For other veterans, it's simply a chance to see what they have to offer including assistance with tuition
"I'd get a chance to see my kids go to college they would get the benefits of a college education," said Darrin Parton, a retired veteran.
But whatever the reason for the visit, they say they're grateful.
"It makes me feel proud that there are people who still care about our vets. There are still a lot of vets that need help all the time and it's nice to know there are people that will come out and help us," stated Parton.
"It's just mind boggling the beauty of people who genuinely care and you can tell if it's the job or if they really are backing you," commented Brown.
The DAV is the most long-lasting veterans advocacy and assistance group in the country.
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