Marine veteran Brian Tally has been fighting for the last three years.

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Photo courtesy of Brian Tally

It's been three years since doctors misdiagnosed an infection that was devouring the spine of Marine Corps veteran Brian Tally.

It's been two years since his hopes for damages from the Department of Veterans Affairs were dashed when he was informed that the doctor who made the mistake was a contractor — and the statute of limitations for legal action against the care provider had passed just weeks before he got the news.

And it's been a little under a year since he drafted the first "Tally Bill," a piece of legislation that he and a handful of vets and advocates stitched together — before that first bill died quietly in Congress in Sept. 2018.

Now, Tally might finally have a chance for closure.

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FILE PHOTO: The Carl Vinson VA Medical Center iin Dublin, Georgia

RIVIERA BEACH — When a distraught patient opened fire at the VA Medical Center in February, Albert Gaines' long ago military training kicked into gear.

"When I saw the arm come up, I knew what was next, pow, pow, pow," said Gaines, who was doing his job, cleaning patient rooms, when gunfire erupted. "I hit the deck to minimize the target."

Now, three months after what his bosses at the hospital call "the active shooter incident," the 65-year-old Riviera Beach man still feels like a target is on him.

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Dr. Keita Franklin, Defense Suicide Prevention Office director, speaks to a crowd about the Department of Defense's plan to combat the issue of suicide among military members at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, Jan. 30, 2017. The 15th Wing clinic was recognized for its superior efforts to prevent suicide in 2016. (Kaitlin Daddona/U.S. Air Force)

Editor's Note: This article by Richard Sisk originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

In the wake of a troubling trend of veteran suicides and at least one shooting on the premises of Department of Veterans Affairs facilities in recent weeks, VA leaders are preparing for congressional scrutiny and hearings on the matter.

What they're not doing, however, is planning to ramp up security at VA centers through the use of metal detectors. While incidents at individual VA facilities may prompt local reviews, the majority of security decisions are not made at the national level.

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The Trump administration is looking into offering grants to connect veterans who are not already getting care from the Department of Veterans Affairs with the outside support they need as part a new initiative to tackle veterans suicides, a senior administration official said on Tuesday.

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Remember Navy Rear Adm. Ronny Jackson? He was President Donald Trump's doctor who said the president had "great genes" and was later nominated to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs, although he withdrew his nomination in April 2018 over allegations that he overprescribed certain drugs and created a hostile working environment.

Well, he's up for his second star while still being investigated by the Defense Department Inspector General's Office, officials said on Friday.

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