Honoring Our Nation’s Veterans

November 8, 2019
Weekly Columns

Former President Ronald Reagan once said, "Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We did not pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free." This Veterans Day week, we get to honor the men and women who have fought to protect these freedoms.

America is blessed with a rich history of people who answered the call to serve and bravely put their lives on the line to defend our freedom. I’m honored to have met many residents of the Fourth District who have served or continue to serve, and I’m so grateful to them and their families for their sacrifices.

One of my biggest priorities in Congress is assisting veterans, which is why I introduced two bills this year that would give veterans the benefits they earned and were promised. Two veterans in my district, Mr. Bill Rhodes and Mr. Horace Wynn, first brought the issue of denied benefit claims for Agent Orange exposure to my attention. Since then, I’ve heard from many other veterans who have been denied VA coverage for illnesses they contracted as a result of their service in the Vietnam War. We saw a lot of progress in this area with the passage of the Blue Water Navy Act this year, but many veterans are still unable to claim benefits. A lot of work remains, and I’m committed to getting these bills passed.

David Witte, a chaplain in the National Guard, also works in my Hot Springs district office, and he’s an incredible resource for anyone struggling with VA casework issues. If you have any questions, please contact my Hot Springs office and David will be happy to help.

To each person who has put on a uniform and signed up to defend our country, thank you for your service. Our freedom endures because of your sacrifice.