Posted by: Idioma Extra | February 7, 2012

The Weird and the Wonderful

“I’m very alive”: Army veteran declared dead 4 times


PALM BAY, Fla.  — Despite rumors to the contrary, Army veteran Jerry Miller is still very much alive.

“I’m alive. I’m very alive,” Miller told WESH 2 News.

The U.S. Veterans Administration has declared him dead four times, but Miller, a Brevard County resident, has refuted the claims.

“To me, it’s stupid. I can’t die but one time. They have killed me four times,” he said.

Miller, a former drill sergeant, served 10 years in the Army. He said he lives on a government pension and Social Security.

The confusion started in July 2010 when he received a letter addressed to his estate that expressed sympathy for his death and politely explained that, as a dead man, he was not eligible for the veterans benefits he was paid.

Miller said he informed the VA that he was still alive, and his benefits were restarted. But the letters kept coming, each one stopping his benefits.

“I’m alive, you see. This can’t keep going on and on,” Miller said.

He said a letter came this month — addressed to his estate — requesting repayment of more than $94,000 in benefits he shouldn’t have received, because he was dead, and that it included polite instructions how to make the payment.

Miller said he has no idea why he was declared dead.

A VA spokesman told WESH 2 News that the organization was looking into the case.

Miller said he asked his congressman to do the same, but so far, being alive has not been sufficient proof that he is not dead.

Word of the Day

refute \ri-ˈfyüt\
transitive verb
1: to prove wrong by argument or evidence : show to be false or erroneous
2: to deny the truth or accuracy of <refuted the allegations>

More Vocabulary

Declare: v. to say or state (something) in an official or public way
Drill sergeant: n. a rank in the Army; someone who trains new soldiers
Eligible: adj. able to do or receive something
Estate: n. all of the things that a person owns
Rumor: n. information or a story that is passed from person to person but has not been proven to be true
Sufficient: adj. having or providing as much as is needed; enough
Veteran: n. someone who fought in a war as a soldier, sailor, etc.

Love those Phrasal Verbs!

Go on: to continue

  • This bad behavior can’t go on any more. You need to stop!

Look into: investigate

  • We will have to look into why prices have rising so quickly the past three months.

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