Should Iraq veteran’s training injury qualify for combat benefits?
WASHINGTON — Iraq veteran Tanya Towne was injured preparing for war. Now the Pentagon must explain why her training injury should be treated differently than a combat-related injury.
“She represents a lot of folks who were called up for Iraq and Afghanistan and who got hurt,” said Towne’s attorney, Scott MacKay.
A federal judge has asked the Defense Department to explain why veterans hurt during combat training don’t qualify for the enhanced benefits provided to those injured during combat. While the Pentagon’s distinction sounds clear-cut, it seemingly conflicts with another part of federal law.
Though precise numbers are elusive, the Disabled American Veterans organization estimated in 2008 that “countless thousands” would lose out on potential benefits because their training injuries weren’t considered combat-related.
Read more about Towne’s case and its importance to other veterans at mcclatchydc.com, McClatchy Newspapers’ Bureau for Washington and the world.