Tags: VA Scandal | crying | Navy | widow | health

Navy Widow Left 'Crying, Crying, Crying' as Health Coverage Eliminated

By    |   Saturday, 21 Feb 2015 04:46 PM

A Seattle Navy widow is distraught after the military revoked what she thought would be her insurance coverage for life — and informed her she may have to repay 16 years of the coverage she did receive

The woman, Cheryl May, was married to her ex-husband for 23 years, and he served for 25 years in the Navy, which would ordinarily have made her eligible for the Department of Defense's "20/20/20" plan for free healthcare for life, reports NBC Affiliate King 5 in Seattle.

An unmarried former spouse qualifies for the 20/20/20 medical benefits, as well as commissary and exchange privileges if the parties were married for at least 20 years; the service member performed at least 20 years of service; and there was at least a 20 year overlap of the marriage and the spouse's military service, explains MilitaryFamily.org

But when May went to a Navy base earlier this month for treatment, she was told she was no longer part of the health plan.

"I was just crying, crying, crying, not understanding how this could possibly be," May told USA Today. "It just didn't make any sense."

A Navy spokesperson, calling May's dilemma a "terrible situation," told USA Today that the ruling will stand, because as May's husband served for 23 years, those years were not consecutive ones. During the end of his career, he took a nine-month break to go to school, so while technically he was in the military for 23 years, he never served for 20 consecutive years.

May said the news could not have come at a worse time, because before the mix-up, her doctor told her she may have leukemia. However, she will not be able to get a diagnosis or treatment without an affordable healthcare plan.

"Over my life I did the right things to get where I was supposed to be at the
end," said May, now 68. "And now I'm at the end and the thing I thought was right is not right."

And she says that if she has to pay back the 16 years of benefits, she fears it will kill her both financially and emotionally.

"I have no recourse," she said. "You can't logic it through with them ... it's all black and white, no gray."

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A Seattle Navy widow is distraught after the military revoked what she thought would be her insurance coverage for life - and informed her she may have to repay 16 years of the coverage she did receive The woman, Cheryl May, was married to her ex-husband for 23 years, and...
crying, Navy, widow, health
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2015-46-21
Saturday, 21 Feb 2015 04:46 PM
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