To the Editor:

Once I carried my step grandfather, a World War Two veteran for an appointment for a checkup of his heart and a refill of his medications to the V.A. in Birmingham. Although the man had an extremely weak heart, we had to sit there 17 hours before he was seen by a doctor. It’s a thousand wonders the stress of such a long wait had not brought on a heart attack.

Another time I went to visit my friend’s dad, who was a Korean War veteran in U.A.B’s ward for veterans. Due to frostbite during that war he had over time lost appendages from his body and was a diabetic.

He could not get any of the numerous V.A. nurses to bring him anything. It seemed they were all too busy yakking and gossiping to do the jobs they were being paid to perform. My friend and I finally found his father a phone for his bedside.

I think I speak for a number of veterans when I say, we are not animals to be herded to and fro and treated with such a lack of care or interest. We gave up trying to deal with all the red tape and bureaucratic B.S. years ago as we got tired of trying to jump like circus poodles through the governments flaming hoops to which they continually added more and more hoops in the hope it would discourage veterans who really need this care.

It scared me away as I had insurance through my employer. However, my heart bleeds for my fellow veterans who are really deserving and in need of this care but cannot jump through enough flaming hoops to qualify for it on the mere pittance of a budget the federal government allocates to the state each fiscal year.

My solution would to be to fire everyone from top to bottom at every V.A. installation and reassure veterans that they would be replaced with health care " workers " who are there to work and serve veterans instead of standing around waiting for their next government paycheck.

Even if I did not have health care insurance I would have to seriously consider going to see a veterinarian before risking my life under the care of the Veterans Administrations or Obamacare; both are the same train wreck waiting to happen and crash all over Americans.

Billy E. Price, Ashville