Gen. William J. Gothard (right) receives a spent shell casing as part of his 2014 retirement ceremony at Fort Jackson, S.C.  Gothard says his 36 years of service left him with hearing loss and tinnitus.
Shantelle Campbell / U.S. Army

The Pentagon Has Settled A Lawsuit Over Allegedly Defective Earplugs. Now Veterans Are Suing, Too.

The settlement with earplug manufacturer 3M has focused attention on service-related hearing loss, one of the most common health problems among veterans.

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A Building Boom for Veterans Cemeteries

Jun 24, 2015
Jay Price/WUNC

The Veterans Administration and state governments have embarked on the largest expansion of veterans cemeteries since the Civil War.

A massive data breach at the federal Office of Personnel Management has exposed the Social Security numbers and personnel records of nearly every federal worker. The implications for federal employees, military service members and the intelligence community could be extraordinary.  

But at a very basic level U.S. service members have been at high risk for identity theft for decades.

War widows can be seen as a living symbol of patriotism. A reminder of the ultimate sacrifice of service.

But practically speaking, life for military widows and widowers is awash in grief, uncertainty and paperwork.

A group run by widows in Washington state has created a supportive social network to ease that burden. 

John Ismay

After being chained and padlocked for decades, the gate to the West Los Angeles VA Campus's Grand Lawn has re-opened.


Spc. Nikayla Shodeen/U.S. Army

At Georgia's Fort Benning, female soldiers are fighting a two-month battle. Their enemies? Hunger, fatigue, even hallucination. They're fighting their way through the Army's notoriously hard Ranger School, trying to make history by becoming the first women to graduate from it.

NPR — along with seven public radio stations around the country — is chronicling the lives of America's troops where they live. We're calling the project "Back at Base."

Caring for the nation's veterans at the end of their lives can be a complex task. Service members — especially combat veterans — can struggle with guilt, abandonment and regret.

George Patterson and Dave Cable

More than a thousand service members remain listed as Missing In Action from the Vietnam War. The brother of one of them still holds out hope.


U.S. Marines who fought long and bloody battles to drive insurgents out of the cities of Ramadi and Fallujah watched with disappointment as the cities fell to the self-described Islamic State.

Susanica Tam for KPCC

Local housing officials need the cooperation of landlords to comply with the federal government's goal of ending homelessness among veterans.


NPR — along with seven public radio stations around the country — is chronicling the lives of America's troops where they live. We're calling the project "Back at Base." This is the second of four reports this week about the National Guard.

Inside the hangar at Washington state's Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM), the Army National Guard mechanics are busy maintaining a neat line of Blackhawk and Chinook helicopters.

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