Al Shockley: After an 8-year battle with the VA for aid and attendance benefits, U.S. Marine finally wins.

Al Shockley fought the VA for eight years to compensate him for a seizure disorder he developed related to his service in the U.S. Marine Corps.

The Kansas City, Mo., native served in artillery in Vietnam from 1965 to 1966 and again in 1972. After he got out, he worked as a truck driver and heavy equipment operator. But a host of nagging war-related injuries began to take a toll and he ultimately was diagnosed with a seizure condition. The condition required another person to be present with him at virtually all times.

When a veteran’s service-related conditions require the aid and attendance of another person, the VA is supposed to provide the veteran extra compensation to defray the cost of that assistance. Here is the VA’s information on the benefit.

But in Mr. Shockley’s case, the VA would not grant service connection for his seizures or special monthly compensation for aid and attendance. For eight years, the VA withheld more than $60,000 in payments.

We were able to help him win a substantial award of back pay after proving to the VA that Mr. Shockley’s seizure disorder were related to a knee injury in service. Mr. Curry was also able to prove that Mr. Shockley’s Vietnam-related illnesses absolutely require the ongoing care and attendance of another person — in his case, the care of his wife. As a result, Mr. Shockley was able to collect all of the money the VA should have been paying him for the last ten years AND has increased monthly payments going forward.

No veteran should have to wait eight years for the compensation they need to live a full life. Brown & Curry applaud Mr. Shockley for persevering.

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