News Brief for 8 September 2014

Marine Recon

Recon Marines believe they can fly during their pre-deployment training. — U.S. Marines @USMC News Brief

Some Veterans Find Peace Thanks To Scuba Gear, Quiet Waters >> NPR
For veterans like Tim Maynard, scuba diving provides relief from symptoms of PTSD. Maynard goes diving once a week, exploring the Florida Keys and shipwrecks off the coast of North Carolina.

Female veterans learn fly-fishing to cope with trauma >> San Francisco Chronicle
The only sound in this one corner of Golden Gate Park is the whirring "zzzzzz" of fishing lines, as they arc out over a deep green pond, sending rippling concentric circles toward shore.

Amputee shares his story of hope with airmen >> Air Force Times
After the accident, after the surgeries that took his foot and then his leg, Capt. Ryan McGuire imagined a future confined to a wheelchair.

In place of 'boots on the ground,' US seeks contractors for Iraq >> Stars and Stripes
Wary of putting combat troops in Iraq, the U.S. government is gauging contractors’ interest in advising the Iraqi Defense Ministry and Counter Terrorism Service in a range of capacities, including force development, logistics and planning and operations.

1st Lt. in contest to launch with private Mars mission >> Army Times
When it comes to post-service plans, 1st Lt. Heidi Beemer has a clearer picture than most: She's going to win a global contest, get launched into space, become one of the first humans to land on Mars, and stay there.

War veteran finds PTSD complicates the workplace >> Houston Chronicle
The past several months have given Xavier Watt the opportunity to ferry his 10-year-old daughter to and from school, take her to visit her grandparents and go out for ice cream. He does the grocery shopping and keeps the house clean for his wife and little girl. He has time left over to play video games.

Two candidates, Marines alike, sense new call to service >> Boston Globe
This is a tale of two Marines. One a Democrat, the other a Republican. Both running for Congress. Seth Moulton's attempt to take out an entrenched incumbent Democrat on Boston's North Shore has received considerable attention. Cormick Lynch's bid for the Republican nomination for the congressional seat in Rhode Island's District One has attracted considerably less.

BLS Reports Slight Decrease in Unemployment Rates for Post 9/11 Veterans >>
Today the Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) reported that the August unemployment rate for Post 9/11 veterans decreased to 8.1, down from 9.2 percent in July. Unemployment for all veterans also decreased, from 6.0 in July to 5.6 in August. The national unemployment decreased only slightly, from 6.2 percent in July to 6.1 in August.

With wars winding down, VA's brain research failed to launch >> Austin American-Statesman
On the morning of July 1, 2008, Department of Veterans Affairs officials gathered to unveil a state-of-the-art brain scanner they predicted would help revolutionize the understanding of traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder in combat veterans.

Feds respond to KARE 11 VA investigation >> KARE; Minneapolis
Sources say the Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General is flying an investigator to Minnesota next week to interview whistleblowers who told KARE 11 News they were pressured to falsify patient records at the Minneapolis VA medical center.

Congress to Press VA on Claims Appeals Process >>
Congress will meet with Veterans Affairs Department officials next week to demand answers on how the agency is handling appeals filed by veterans whose compensation claims were denied.

The VA: Trouble from the start > Boston Globe
This summer's revelations about the Veterans Administration have tarnished the image of a cherished national institution. One of the nation's largest health care systems, the VA provides a lifetime of medical services at no personal expense to military veterans. But recent events suggest the system is broken.

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