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Veterans have benefit options

Services exist for former service members

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POSTED: August 25, 2012 6:30 p.m.

Military veterans in Coastal Georgia have a number of options for services and benefits they may qualify for through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the Georgia Department of Veterans Affairs. However, getting specific information about these options may require persistence on a veteran’s part.
Two Internet sources of information for Georgia veterans are www.va.gov and www.veterans.georgia.gov. Phone numbers also are available; however, callers are not likely to be connected to a person right away when calling the federal V.A. office for benefits information.
For the state office, though, veterans can call 404-929-5345, and they will reach a person rather a recorded message that fails to provide the specific information they need.
Brian Smith, administrative assistant with the Georgia Department of Veterans Affairs, said the VA provides benefits to Georgia veterans beyond those afforded by the federal VA, including exemptions from some taxes and fees for service-connected, 100-percent-disabled veterans. Totally disabled veterans may even qualify for free state hunting and fishing licenses.
Veterans also can call local state veterans affairs offices in Glennville and Savannah. For Glennville, call 912-654-5159, ext. 227. For Savannah, call 912-920-0214, ext. 2194.
Locally, veterans can talk to VA service representatives at Fort Stewart’s Soldier Service Center in building 253. Call 368-6950 to schedule an appointment. These representatives can explain veterans’ benefits and help with education- and disability-benefits applications.
According to its website, the federal VA is structured in three service lines, including veterans benefits administration, veterans health administration and veterans cemetery administration.
The benefits administration includes disability compensation; education and training, which includes vocational rehabilitation and employment services; home loan guarantees; life insurance; and survivors’ benefits.
The health administration provides medical treatment for veterans at VA hospitals and clinics.
The cemetery administration provides information about burial benefits for veterans, including headstones, burial flags and reimbursement for burial expenses for certain veterans.
Families of Coastal Georgia veterans also have an option to bury their loved one at the Georgia Veterans Cemetery in Glennville. For information, call 912-654-5398, ext. 221.

 

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