The chart was created from data in VetPop2011: https://www.va.gov/vetdata/Veteran_Population.asp
The highest number of deaths of WWII veterans has peaked. Korean veterans are dying in larger numbers in this period. Alarmingly, Vietnam veteran deaths are climbing steadily even though they are still relatively young.
Certainly poverty, disabilities, and homelessness are major factors in veteran mortality regardless of age. From a VA Special Report on Homelessness veterans:
Veterans are over represented among the homeless population:
In 2010, Veterans account for 10 percent of the total adult population and 16 percent of the homeless adult population.
SHIV tended to be older, more male and more disabled than non-Veterans
The takeaway from the chart above is that Korean and Vietnam veterans have no time to spare. Waiting patiently or impatiently for the government and veteran service organizations to voluntarily address the real needs of these veterans in the magnitude necessary is a pointless now. What positive actions can we take as individuals?
This Sunday post is dedicated to those suffering in the cold right now.