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Thieves Drained The Savings Of America's Oldest Living Veteran. The Bank Made It Right
Bank of America has restored funds stolen from 112-year-old veteran Richard Overton's account, his family said.
Overton, a World War II veteran who lives in Austin, learned his bank account had been drained Friday, his third cousin Volma Overton said.
Volma Overton said the family was shocked when the bank called and asked them to come in and sign for the restored funds.
"Man, I teared up," he said. "I couldn't believe it. They made it happen. The executive of the company said he'd take care of this, and he took care of it."
A Bank of America spokeswoman confirmed Wednesday that the bank was investigating the issue and had credited Overton's account. Austin police were also investigating, along with federal authorities.
"Everyone wants to get to the bottom of this. I don't think it's going to be long before we know," Volma Overton said.
Money wasn't the only thing stolen from Richard Overton, his cousin said. His identity was taken, too.
"Someone set up a bogus account, got his Social Security number and accessed his personal checking account," Volma Overton said.
His bank account wasn't tied to his GoFundMe account, which funds his in-home care. The campaign has raised more than $430,000 since it launched in December 2016, but a large portion has been spent. The funds go toward his medical care — Overton requires 24-hour care and four caretakers switch off between 12-hour shifts.
The fundraiser saw a huge spike in donations since the news broke about Richard Overton's account being drained, his cousin said.
"It's been a true blessing in disguise for us," he said.
Now, the oldest man in America can spend his days as he always does: sitting on his front porch, where he smokes 12 cigars a day and sips on whiskey and coke.
"Everything's back just like it was," Volma Overton said.
©2018 The Dallas Morning News. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
MONS, Belgium (Reuters) - The United States will send 20,000 troops to Europe next April and May in its biggest military exercises on European soil since the Cold War to underscore Washington's commitment to NATO, a senior allied commander said on Tuesday.
Days after a NATO summit in London at which U.S. President Donald Trump called low-spending European allies "delinquent", U.S. Major General Barre Seguin said the exercises, centered on Germany, will be the largest of their kind in 25 years.
"This really demonstrates transatlantic unity and the U.S. commitment to NATO," Seguin, who oversees allied operations from NATO's military headquarters in Belgium, told Reuters.
Gold Star family members might finally see an end to the so-called "Widows Tax" thanks to the National Defense Authorization Act of 2020.
The top Pentagon watchdog has announced it would be investigating all deaths of recruits during initial military training over the past five years, the agency said in a statement last week.
In a Dec. 4 memo, the DoD Inspector General said it was changing the scope of an investigation it had opened on Nov. 18 that was titled Evaluation of Medical Resources and Guidance to Trainers at Recruit Training Centers in the DoD. Its new title, the IG said, would be Evaluation of Medical Protocols and Deaths of Recruits in the DoD.
While its original objective of looking into the medical resources available to recruits would remain the same, the IG said it would now also review all deaths of recruits at military basic training facilities between Jan. 1, 2015 and Dec. 31, 2019.
The move comes in the wake of several deaths at basic training facilities over the past year. In April, the Navy announced a safety review after two prospective sailors died at its recruit training facility in Great Lakes, Illinois. Seaman Recruit Kelsey Nobles died after a fitness test that month; Seaman Recruit Kierra Evans also died after the run portion of the fitness test.
In September, an 18-year-old soldier died following a "medical emergency" before a training drill at Fort Jackson, S.C.
Meanwhile, the Marine Corps has disciplined more than 20 Marines over misconduct at its San Diego boot camp since 2017, according to The Washington Post. The action came in the wake of a scandal involving the death of a 20-year-old Muslim recruit named Raheel Siddiqui, who fell 40 feet to his death at the Parris Island training facility, where he and other Muslims were targeted for abuse by their drill instructor (the instructor was later sentenced to 10 years in prison at court-martial).
According to the IG, Pentagon investigators will visit all DoD recruit training facilities and interview personnel from each service's education and training commands. They will also speak with personnel at military medical facilities, the Defense Health Agency, and those assigned at the Military Entrance Processing Command, which does the initial intake for civilians going into military service.
The number of substantiated allegations of sexual misconduct against senior Army officials increased this year, according to an Army Inspector General report recently presented to service leaders and obtained by Task & Purpose.
The document, which lays out broad details of IG investigations undertaken in fiscal year 2019, looks at investigations specific to senior Army officials, which includes "promotable colonels, general officers and senior executives," according to Army spokesman Lt. Col. Emanuel Ortiz.
Marine Corps senior leaders have begun to express cautious openness to the idea of making the service's boot camps fully co-ed. But if Congress has its way, the service may be pushed toward full integration sooner than expected.
The final conference version of the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act includes a provision that would require the service to integrate both its East Coast and West Coast entry-level training facilities within the next eight years.