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Brown Pushes Bill Extending Benefit for Gold Star Fathers

Friday, July 4, 2014 at 9:17 AM

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Scott Warner speaks to media outside the Soldiers and Sailors Monument at Cleveland's Public Square. (Nick Castele)

On the eve of Independence Day, Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown was trying to drum up support for a bill directed at the parents of soldiers who have died or become disabled.

Spouses and mothers of soldiers killed or seriously wounded in the military get a special preference when applying for federal government jobs. 

Brown’s bill would expand that to benefit to fathers. Such parents would only be eligible if they’re single or taking care of a seriously disabled spouse.

Joining the senator was Scott Warner, a Canton man who lost his son in Iraq. Though not eligible for the benefit, he advocates for families who have lost children in the military.

“The population that it is going to impact is going to be small,” Warner said. “But it’s really, what I’m looking at is the bigger picture. And the bigger picture is how do we help the surviving families of the next generation, of the next wars.”

Brown introduced the bill in May. It’s been referred to committee. An identical bill was introduced last year in the House, but hasn’t been brought for a vote.

(Story by ideastream’s Nick Castele)

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