September is Suicide Prevention Month. As Dr. Keita Franklin, director of the Defense Suicide Prevention Office, said, “Every suicide is a tragic loss to our nation and those impacted. The family and friends left behind who must deal with the aftermath of the event and put those events in perspective may, in some cases, never know why the service member or veteran took their life.”
Is your family prepared for a natural disaster, like a major flood or earthquake? It’s hurricane season, and, with memories of devastating storms like Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina, you might already be stockpiling supplies or planning an evacuation route. But there’s something else that should be on your list, too: emergency financial planning. And one way to do that is to think like an action hero.
During my Army service, I developed a medical condition that required foot surgery while I was deployed to Iraq (stubbornly, I insisted it would be better to be operated on in a tent than leave my team during the deployment). When I left the military in 2005, a veterans service officer walked me through the process of applying for disability compensation for the lingering problems I was experiencing (and had me document exposure to burn pits in case I developed additional problems later on). I was lucky: my exam was not difficult and my claim was decided swiftly.
“Three decorative pillows or just two?” my daughter Anna asked in front of a colorful display of bedding at a local Homegoods store. It was 7 p.m., and we had been shopping since the stores opened that morning.