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FAMILY OF SIX BREATHES SIGH OF RELIEF

VFW assistance a blessing for a couple in financial crisis.

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Sgt. Jason Hyde with his wife Michele and three of their four kids.

After two tours of Afghanistan and years of battling Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Sgt. Jason Hyde medically retired from the Marine Corps in 2010.

Unfortunately, Jason’s retirement pay never came through. Suddenly he had no income.

“Jason had panic attacks and was angry all the time,” said Michele Hyde, Jason’s wife. “He lost interest in doing anything as a family and couldn’t concentrate enough to accomplish anything.” 

Since then, Jason has struggled to maintain consistent employment. As a husband and father of four, he quickly fell behind on bills.

“Right now I am the only one working,” said Michele. “I’m also trying my best to take care of the house, the kids and my husband. It can be very overwhelming at times.” 

Jason was eventually rated 80% disabled by the VA, but, once again, his benefits were taking longer than expected to come through.

As the bills piled up, Michele got worried. She did some research online and came across VFW Unmet Needs. She submitted an application and was approved. The Hydes received a grant for over $2,000, which they used to pay their past-due car, water and power bills.

“The grant has alleviated a lot of stress,” said Michele. “Having one less worry has allowed me to focus on my husband—making sure he gets the care and support he needs.”

With debt off his mind, Jason was able to complete an inpatient PTSD program at the VA Hospital in Milwaukee.

“After the VFW awarded the grant, they followed up to make sure we had a solid plan to get back on track. It’s amazing how much these people care,” said Michele.

Jason and Michele are still working through some issues, but their family is growing stronger.

“We are going to couples therapy to learn who we are again,” said Michele. “I still love him very much but he is very different now, so we are making a new normal.”

Michele is forever grateful to the VFW for helping her family of six through hard times.

“Without these grants, so many families would suffer much more,” said Michele. “Sometimes we just need that little break in our lives to catch up and get ahead.”

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