Helicopter Dedicated in Dover, Congressmen Address VA Scandal - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Helicopter Dedicated in Dover, Congressmen Address VA Scandal

DOVER, Del. (WBOC)- On Monday afternoon the Kent County Chapter of Vietnam Veterans of America dedicated the newly installed UH-1 Huey helicopter at the Veterans Memorial Park in Dover. The helicopter arrived in Delaware this past fall and underwent significant preparation for its new home. Hundreds of people showed up for the event.

The three members of Delaware's congressional delegation were in Dover at various points Monday to check out the chopper. WBOC  questioned them on the federal government's response to the recent scandal at VA medical facilities nationwide.

Issues at veterans affairs have sparked outrage across the country in recent weeks. They're brought into even starker relief on this day set aside for honoring those who have served.

The VA medical in Wilmington is not currently one of the facilities under investigation. But Rep. John Carney, D-Delaware, says he's concerned about VA problems even if they're not in Delaware.

"If it's happening anywhere, it's unacceptable. It's not worthy of the sacred obligation we have to our veterans. Memorial Day is a reminder of that."

Allegations at various facilities nationwide include falsification of records to cover up care delays. Allegations also are that delays may have contributed to the deaths of a number of veterans, who were stuck in massive backlogs and awaiting care.

"If things were done wrong, bad judgement was used, and veterans suffered as a result, people will be held accountable," said Sen. Tom Carper, D-Delaware.

Many lawmakers, especially Republicans, are calling for the VA Sec. Eric Shinseki to resign. Delaware's congressmen - all Democrats - did not join that chorus. Last week Sen. Chris Coons, D-Delaware, sent a letter to the Wilmington VA hospital asking for assurance cover up and serious delay issues weren't occurring there. That was among other things Sen. coons did last week.

"As a member of the appropriations committee I voted to fully fund a thorough and searching investigation of the VA backlog problem," he said.

Sen. Coons tells WBOC the entire congressional delegation will be meeting with leadership at the Wilmington VA later this week to get more information in person about the current situation there.
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