Among all of the outrageous effects of the government shutdown, perhaps the most offensive is the withholding of a death benefit to the families of fallen troops. That benefit is used for funeral and travel expenses, among others. Military.com News reports:
The families of four soldiers and one Marine killed in Afghanistan over the weekend have been told that they will be denied death benefits while the government shutdown continues, leaving at least one mother in despair and disbelief. The families will also be denied travel re-imbursement should they choose to go to Dover Air Force Base, Del., for the solemn return of the caskets of their loved ones, Pentagon officials said Tuesday.
Marine combat veteran Rep. Duncan Hunter is leading the fight to restore the death benefit immediately, writing to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel today and appearing tonight on “The Kelly File.”
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Update: It looks as though a fix could be passed in the House as early as tomorrow; unfortunately, the Senate and president would have to act as quickly to make a difference.