The state Public Employees Retirement System and its board members should be scrutinized, including some state legislators, due to the unfair pension policy being used against retirees who served their country and state honorably.
In fact, Sen. Erik Wells, D-Kanawha, chairman of the Senate Military Commission, said, "The retirement board has done a very good job of denying people (veterans) pension credit."
The current approach is inconsistent and results in litigation.
Hershel W. "Woody" Williams, a Marine veteran of WWII and this state's last living Medal of Honor recipient, said: "Any policy should be applied evenly among veterans whether or not they saw combat."
Both statements from these gentlemen have been my "battle cry" going back as far as the late Gov. Cecil Underwood. I went to the Capitol every year on Veterans Visibility Day to explain my discontent towards this unfair policy.
As a retired member of PERS, with 31 years of service time and four years of active-duty time in the Marine Corps, my accreditation for military time is only 13 months - the Vietnam era.
After the many years of service as a public employee, to receive even the 13 months of accreditation at retirement cost a lot of time and much discouragement at the Capitol.
Now this issue is front-page news because some veterans are going to take PERS to court to receive credit for time served in the military.
The plans for the teachers and state police are much more adequate for their veterans credit time.
This system needs to be fixed now so all veterans are treated equally.
Mississippi honors its veterans regardless of the draft or any period of armed conflict
So is West Virginia going to continue to give veterans who served honorably the cold shoulder or will it do what is right and treat everyone fairly?
Richard G. Stone