I am committed to the health and well-being of our veterans. If you are a veteran encountering issues with your military benefits, an existing VA claim, awards and commendations earned but not received, or other service or separation related issues, my Rochester staff may be able to help you.
General information about veteran’s issues: Visit the Department of Veterans' Affairs website.
21st Century GI Bill: Information can be found here.
Request a copy of your military records: You must fill out the form SF-180. This form can be downloaded by clicking here. If you have completed the SF-180 and have not received a timely response, my office can check on the status of your request.
File a claim: If you have not yet filed a claim for benefits you may have earned as a result of your military service, your County Veterans Service Office (CVSO) can help you file your claim. To locate your CVSO, click here. If your claim has been incorrectly processed by the VA, lost or delayed in the review process, my office may be able to help rectify the situation. Please call my Mankato office at 507-388-2149 and ask to speak with the Veterans Affairs Constituent Advocate.
Please contact our office for assistance with any questions or problems you may have.
Frequently Asked Questions:
- How can I contact the Department of Veterans Affairs?
- How can I get education benefits under the Montgomery GI Bill?
- How can I get medical benefits?
- How can I get information on suicide prevention?
- How can I get a home loan?
- How can I get life insurance?
- How can I get vocational rehabilitation and employment benefits?
- How can I get survivor benefits?
- What drug benefits are available?
- How can I get a copy of my military records?
- How can I apply for a medal, award, or decoration that I earned while in the service?
- What other services are available to me?
More information and help
- Where can I get more information on Federal benefits for veterans?
- Where can I get more information on Minnesota benefits for veterans?
- Where can I get help getting my veterans benefits?
Information for Military Personnel.
The following are examples of assistance I've provided to southern Minnesota veterans:
Patricia Borowski called my office regarding her late husband, Staff Sgt. Robert Borowski. Robert served our country valiantly during WWII, earning two Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star Medal for his service. Robert, however, never received his Bronze Star. After Patricia's call, my office worked with the United States Army to break the logjam and was able to award the medal, along with a certificate, so that Patricia Borowski could have them in her possession for Memorial Day.
Patricia Borowski holding her late husband's Bronze Star
“Thank you. With you it is not just what you say but what you do. As a Vietnam veteran, my husband’s service to his country had finally been recognized and rewarded.” – Gerry Penrose, wife of Chief Warrant Officer Richard Penrose, Retired.
It just wasn’t right that after serving in Vietnam and suffering the effects of PSTD and Agent Orange, Chief Warrant Officer Richard Penrose (Retired) should have to fight to receive the service related disability and VA benefits to which he was entitled. My office worked with the VA to get Mr. Penrose’s disability increased to 100%. I also corrected a problem Penrose had with receiving his previous benefits retroactively. Now Richard and his wife Gerry are receiving the full disability and concurrent military pension.
Private Jay Haugesag, a Vietnam Veteran from Mankato, had a disability claim pending with the Department of Veterans Affairs. Mr. Haugesag was experiencing financial hardship as a result of not receiving payment for this claim. My staff and I were able to help expedite his disability claim with the VA and Mr. Haugesag was mailed a check for the $34,000 of payments that were owed to him by the VA.
Private First Class David Mahlke III, of Winona, was injured in the line of duty during the initial invasion of Iraq in March 2003. After returning home to Winona, David discovered that his discharge papers did not reflect his service in Iraq and had not been awarded any of the medals he had earned for his service. These errors prevented David from obtaining or displaying the Minnesota State Iraq War Veteran license plates that he wanted for his pickup truck. My office contacted the Army and asked them to correct David’s discharge papers. The Army corrected its mistake, added David’s service in Iraq to his discharge papers and awarded David the medals he had earned in service to his country. David now proudly displays his Iraq War Veteran license plates. I presented David with his medals in May 2007.