Disability Grant To Help Diabetic Navy Vet Amputee Get His Own Home
by Raymond Blathers
(Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA)
I am a 54-year-old African American with Type I diabetes. I'm a single father living alone.
After serving in the US Navy for 13 years and nine months, I was discharged and went to work as a Security Officer in California, where I was living upon discharge.
I was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
My 18-year-old daughter, in college studying cosmetology, recently graced me with a granddaughter.
I had been going to college online at Kaplan University for my Associates Degree and recently at Ashford University for my Bachelors.
I was unable to complete my studies though because my financial aid ran out. I can't afford to pay my student loans off and complete my last six courses.
Since moving back to my home state about four years ago I have had six surgeries. At present I am with one leg. As a result, I have a hard time with mobility and the ability to get required suitable necessities.
I am a veteran, so I do receive medical assistance at the Veterans Hospital (Clement J. Zablocki Medical Center, Milwaukee) and I do receive Social Security Disability of $1392 a month.
I am also listed with high blood pressure and high cholesterol, for which I am taking medication.
Regarding the loss of my leg… I had gone in for an amputation of my left foot and two toes. The wounds had gotten infected.
I had an appointment on August 3, 2011 that resulted in my consultation with my primary care doctor. He called the hospital doctors for a second opinion of an odor coming from my foot. The hospital doctor stated there was no odor and sent me home.
I went back to the VA hospital for another wound care appointment. That is when I was admitted into the VA hospital and my left leg was amputated on August 14, 2011.
I had tried to discuss this with others such as the VA Advocate and Chaplain. They explained to me that I had passed the time to turn in any grievance.
I had spent approximately 13 days in isolation drugged up, unable to tell what day was what. I was put into a single bedroom, moved into a room with another vet and then discharged September 22, 2011.
I have the Veterans Hospital which provides my medical, ears, eyes and throat needs, but not dental.
I feel I should have a bridge for the missing teeth in my mouth so I can properly process and digest food.
I live in a one-bedroom apartment alone and I pay my rent, electric/gas and phone/Internet/cable (bundle).
I applied for and receive $30 from Wisconsin food share and a helpful "food-box" delivered to me weekly by the Veterans Services.
I have tried to get housing, but at present I'm still on the waiting list.
I have tried to get compensation from the Department of Veterans Affairs, but unfortunately there is no record of my diabetes during my time of service.
I'd like a grant that would help me buy my own home so that my daughter and her child can come and live with me.
I would need an electric wheelchair, a ramp, large doorways and bathroom accessibility, along with an accessible vehicle for me to drive to appointments, shopping and laundry.
I hope to open a business of my own, most likely a computer repair and installation store. I'd like the funds to expand into a growing business for helping others to open their own business.
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