HEBRON, Conn. (WTNH) — It was a day to honor veterans at Hebron Elementary School. Those who served were invited into several classrooms to mark the holiday.
The veterans shared their stories with students and News 8 asked them to also share their hopes now that a new administration is about to lead the country. President-elect Donald Trump takes over in January and they hope improvements with how veterans get their benefits will follow.
“We hope that the system that they get away with the backlog,” says veteran Paul Tardif. “The backlog right now is… the years it’s like three to five years.”
“By the time they actually get their benefits unfortunately some have either passed away or don’t have the opportunity to use those benefits,” says veteran Tim Fournier.
“They need to hire more people to deal with all the stuff we have going on,” says Tardif who served in the army and then later with the National Guard in Afghanistan.
“Well hopefully that they’re going to take care of the veterans especially those that have PTSD and make sure they feed the veterans, housing,” says veteran Don Doucette. “There’s a lot of them that are still on the side of the road that people have forgotten.”
“The hope with any administration is to continue to serve and support our veterans here in Connecticut in particular and then across the nation,” says Commissioner Sean Connolly. He says the Department of Veterans Affairs is working to make sure those who served have a place to live, a job, and the medical benefits they need.
“When there are particular cases where we can help, where I can pick up the phone and kind of get that log jam moving, I will do that,” says Commissioner Connolly.
He was among the veterans who visited the Hebron school. After they spoke with students they were then honored and entertained by the band and other students during a school-wide assembly.