56 year-old Helen Bedford, shift manager at The Salvation Army in Ann Arbor, recently had her appeal for veteran status declined by the Veterans Administration last Friday.
“Despite myself, I figured I’d try,” explained Bedford while hanging shirts. “I thought, I need healthcare and a loan, and why not pull the whole ‘army’ spiel to try to secure the bag? But oh, well. Can’t win ‘em all.”
Bedford was not alone in her pursuit of veteran status. Miles Goodwin, a manager at Old Navy, also petitioned the VA for free healthcare several months earlier. Goodwin was denied financial veterans’ benefits on the basis of Old Navy not being affiliated with the United States Navy.
“I tried to tell them that retail is public service, and public service deserves to be recognized by the government, and those who serve their country deserve a fat pension,” said Goodwin. “But they didn’t buy it.”
At press time, a spokesperson for the The Salvation Army defended the workers’ decisions, saying, “We aren’t a real branch of the military, you gotta do what you gotta do to get that bread.”