Permanent and Total Disability, Denis McDonough, Clifford Worthy, Jesse Brown MOH

February 02, 2021


Welcome back to another episode of 4 Minutes With LHFV! This week, 2/23/2021, VA Disability Lawyer Jim Fausone brings four more interesting topics for you to consider. We will discuss Permanent and Total Disability Ratings; Denis McDonough; a Veterans Radio Podcast featuring Colonel Clifford Worthy (ret.); and a Medal of Honor heroic story about Jesse LeRoy Brown during the Korean War, courtesy of Home of Heroes.

Permanent and Total Disability

A very popular question our office receives is in regard to being 100% Permanent and Totally Disabled. Many veterans think being labeled 100% P&T is a good and easy process to get into, but we’re here to say be careful what you wish for.

First, let’s breakdown what Permanent and Total status means. “Total” means that your disabilities equal a 100% Veterans Benefits rating. “Permanent” means VA expects the veteran’s disability to continue throughout their life without significant improvement.

Some disabilities recognized by the Department of Veterans Affairs cannot be rated up to 100%. For example, a Thumb problem or Tinnitus would not grant you a 100% rating by VA. But, if you can stack multiple ratings equaling up to 100%, then that would be considered a Total Rating.

We always remind clients asking this question that they don’t really want to be rated 100%, you don’t really want to have that kind of problem. But for those who do, Legal Help For Veterans, PLLC can assist you with your claim.

The next question becomes will that disability improve over time? If not, VA will assign your 100% Permanent and Total rating, and you will be off on your way. But you may have a problem that does indeed get better over time, and if so, VA will have you come back in for an exam and re-rate you depending on the improvement of your disability – but we will discuss this situation in-depth on a future episode.

Denis McDonough

In the news, we have discussed in a previous episode the recent appointment of Denis McDonough as Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs. McDonough marks the second VA Secretary ever appointed that is not a veteran.

Secretary McDonough recently shared his first message to veterans on the VAntage Point Blog after his swearing-in ceremony on Monday, February 8th. From what we have been hearing, Secretary McDonough is well-versed in making Washington work, so let’s hope he makes it work for the veteran-community.

Veterans Radio Podcasts – Col. Clifford Worthy

As we reach the end of February and the end of Black History Month, we wanted to share one more of our favorite Veterans Radio Podcasts. Last year,Veterans Radio Podcast Host Jim Fausone interviewed Colonel Clifford Worthy (ret.), born the great-grandson of slaves, Col. Worthy was one of the few African-American men of his generation to be accepted and excel as a Black Knight of the Hudson, a traditional nickname for West Point cadets.

In the late 1940s, the doors to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point were closed to most young African-American men. The few that would attend the prestigious military academy were subjected to relentless abuse, with fewer cadets surviving. Worthy took the chance of reaching out to U.S. Rep. John Dingell Sr. who had been a proud part of the New Deal in Washington, D.C., and was ready to unlock those doors.

Colonel Clifford Worthy’s commitment to faith, family, and service included his loving support of his son Mark, who was born with developmental disabilities at a time where they were not widely understood. Learn more about Col. Worthy’s story that spans five decades and the countless lessons he has learned.

Read Col. Worthy’s book “The Black Knight: An African-American Family’s Journey from West Point” on Amazon.

Home of Heroes – Jesse LeRoy Brown

We want to bring another story with you from our friends at Home of Heroes. Home of Heroes hosts countless heroic stories spanning every conflict and era in American History, this story comes from No Man Should Die Alone during the Korean War.

On December 4, 1950, Ensign Jesse LeRoy Brown was supporting ground troops at the Battle of Chosin Reservoir when his F4U Corsair aircraft came under heavy fire and crashed on a remote mountaintop. Brown’s wingman, Lieutenant Thomas Hudner, intentionally crashed his own aircraft to rescue his friend. Despite Hudner’s efforts, Jesse Brown would ultimately succumb to his wounds.

Jesse LeRoy Brown was the first African-American U.S. Navy officer to be killed in the Korean War and would be posthumously awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Purple Heart, and the Air Medal. While Lieutenant Hudner would receive the Medal of Honor for his actions.

The story of Jesse LeRoy Brown makes you think about how the military in the past – and possibly present – has treated its African-American service members. But we highly recommend reading this story, it will give a great perspective.

VA Disability Appeals | Legal Help For Veterans, PLLC

Thank you for tuning in this week on 4 Minutes With LHFV! We look forward to bringing you four more interesting topics to consider. In the meantime, stay up-to-date with Legal Help For Veterans, PLLC and the latest news at Veterans Affairs by following us on social media! Our links are below.

If you have any questions about a potential VA Disability Claim or are interested in an increased disability rating, reach out to us at Legal Help For Veterans, PLLC by calling our office at (800) 693-4800.

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