Real Life "Private Ryan" Screwed By Military
Posted by Pile
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|Forced to leave the combat zone after his two brothers died in the Iraq war, Army Spc. Jason Hubbard faced another battle once he returned home: The military cut off his family's health care, stopped his G.I. educational subsidies and wanted him to repay his sign-up bonus.|
It wasn't until Hubbard petitioned his local congressman that he was able to restore some of his benefits.
Now that congressman, Rep. Devin Nunes, is leading an effort to pass a bill that would ensure basic benefits to all soldiers who are discharged under an Army policy governing sole surviving siblings and children of soldiers killed in combat. The rule is a holdover from World War II meant to protect the rights of service people who have lost a family member to war.
"I felt as if in some ways I was being punished for leaving even though it was under these difficult circumstances," Hubbard told The Associated Press. "The situation that happened to me is not a one-time thing. It's going to happen to other people, and to have a law in place is going to ease their tragedy in some way."
Hubbard, 33, and his youngest brother, Nathan, enlisted while they were still grieving for their brother, Marine Lance Cpl. Jared Hubbard, who was 22 when he was killed in a 2004 bomb explosion in Ramadi.
At their request, the pair were assigned to the same unit, the 3rd Brigade of the 25th Infantry Division in Hawaii, and deployed to Iraq the next year.
In August, 21-year-old Cpl. Nathan died when his Black Hawk helicopter crashed near Kirkuk. Jason was part of the team assigned to remove his comrades' bodies from the wreckage.
Hubbard accompanied his little brother's body on a military aircraft to Kuwait, then on to California. He kept steady during Nathan's burial at Clovis Cemetery, standing in dress uniform between his younger brothers' graves as hundreds sobbed in the heat.
But Hubbard broke his silence when he found his wife, pregnant with their second child, had been cut off from the transitional health care the family needed to ease back to civilian life after he was discharged in October.
"This is a man who asked for nothing and gave a lot," said Nunes, R-Calif., who represents Hubbard's hometown of Clovis, a city of 90,000 next to Fresno. "Jason is one person who obviously has suffered tremendously and has given the ultimate sacrifice. One person is too many to have this happen to."
Hubbard went to Nunes, who began advocating for the former soldier in December, after hearing the Army was demanding that he repay $6,000 from his enlistment bonus and was denying him up to $40,000 in educational benefits under the GI bill.
Posted by Elise on 2008-05-20 12:16:00
|the military does not care who they kill or what families they destroy, I feel he was betrayed by the army he put his life on the line to protect.|
the army screws over millions of familes in many ways, and they must be stopped. march forward Pink! and let's get that GI bill passed.