The Pentagon has agreed to hold off on changes to some GI Bill benefits that would have impacted long-serving troops, a congressman's office said.
The Department of Defense will delay the policy change, which was scheduled to go into effect Friday, until Jan. 12, according to a statement released Friday by U.S. Rep. Joe Courtney. The change would have prevented soldiers and other service members with more than 16 years of service from transferring their Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits to eligible family members.
When then-Chief Warrant Officer 3 Christopher C. Palumbo found out he couldn't get back to a battle in Afghanistan, he was so mad that he drop-kicked his flight helmet.
Palumbo, a Black Hawk helicopter pilot, received the Distinguished Service Cross Award on Thursday for his actions during that battle on April 11, 2005. The award is the Army's second highest for valor.
The wreckage of a C-141 aircraft at Pope Air Force Base after being hit by an out-of-control F-16 on March 23, 1994. The resulting fire killed 24 U.S. Army paratroopers waiting nearby. The aerial view, taken one day after the accident, shows the extent of the damage to the C-141 Starlifter after the F-16D Falcon crashed and hit the unoccupied C-141 parked on the tarmac. (Airman Magazine/Wikimedia Commons)
Retired Lt. Col. Jay Nelson is often asked when he recovered from a 1994 accident that killed 24 fellow paratroopers as they were preparing for a jump.
"I tell folks I'll let them know when I get there," he said.
Nelson, who was burned over about half his body in the accident, spoke at a ceremony Friday that honored the soldiers who died. The event marked the 25th anniversary of the accident, which happened on March 23, 1994, at Green Ramp on what is now Pope Army Airfield.