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‘It Meant a Lot’

Unmet Needs grant a ‘big relief’ for Army veteran

March 06, 2019



The VFW’s Unmet Needs program helped an Iraq War veteran who was unable to work while he was hospitalized.

Keith Mitchell, an Army Veteran who served in Iraq with the 10th Mountain Division in 2004, and his daughter, Athena, were helped by a $1,350 grant from VFW’s Unmet Needs program. Mitchell needed assistance after spending a week in the hospital last year. Photo courtesy of Keith Mitchell.

Keith Mitchell is an Army veteran who served with the 10th Mountain Division, stationed at Fort Drum, N.Y. He served in Iraq in 2004, but was medically discharged in 2005 because of health problems. 

Due to issues with his spine, as well as developing anxiety and tinnitus while on active duty, he is rated 40 percent disabled by the VA. However, this wasn’t enough to support him and his daughter, Athena, when he had to go to the hospital last year.

“I had a bad pain in my chest,” Mitchell said. “They told me it was because of my anxiety and that my blood pressure was through the roof. They had to keep me there for a week until everything went down. That one week without pay really hurt.”

Mitchell said the VFW’s Unmet Needs program helped him pay his rent while he was unable to work. He received a $1,350 grant. He said he was glad that he applied for the grant, and that the process was “very easy.”

“It only took three weeks to get help,” Mitchell said. “I’m very thankful, and I’m very blessed that it only took that long. It meant a lot; I was desperate.”

Since receiving the grant, Mitchell said it has helped him get back on track. He has been able to start working again to support his family.

“After getting the grant, it was a big relief,” Mitchell said. “I really appreciate what VFW did. They really came at the right time – it was all perfectly timed.” 

Learn more about the Unmet Needs program at www.vfw.org/unmetneeds.