In this final episode, we want to suggest veterans lessen the burden for their loved ones who will make arrangements after their death, by considering some advance planning. Matthew Marini, Advance Funeral Planning Director for Dignity Memorial, informs us of some of the benefits that may be available -- as well as the key document to show eligibility, the DD-214.
Veterans are usually reluctant to discuss their experiences in military service, especially combat related. Many have avoided interaction with government organizations, like the Veterans Administration, due to mistrust. So, it is incredibly difficult for many families to engage their veteran in discussion about funeral arrangements and knowing which choices to make can be overwhelming. Military funeral? Where to be buried? And if you don't have some up front tips, you may lose out on some reimbursement or assistance from the government. We strongly urge you to talk to your veteran and, if they do not want to discuss arrangements with you, at the very least, obtain a copy of their DD-214 and protect it so it is available for you later. The DD-214 is proof of service and is the key to obtaining veterans benefits after a death.
Food for Thought: Even if you or the veteran feel a military themed memorial service is too much, or the Presidential Certificate that can be requested is unnecessary, please consider children and grandchildren. This will remain in their memories as a special moment and a letter signed by the President can be passed on for generations as a legacy - something to be proud of.
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Music by Kevin MacLeod