Local veteran group moves to end government shutdown

Newport, Tenn. (WVLT) Millions of veterans from across the nation are planing to come together in Washington D.C..

They're demanding their monuments be reopened.

A group of Cocke County vets aren't able to make the trip so, they're supporting the Million Vet March in their own way.

Chuck Bean is a World War II Veteran, he served in the military for more than two decades.

Now, his disability benefits are at risk and he wants to be heard, so he wrote a song, it's called "This Freedom isn't free."

"Every verse, every word of it tells the truth, tells it just like it is," says Bean

He sings, "Let's stand together now, like our forefathers did. They died for you and me, too bad it had to be, the freedom in this land sure ain't free."

But it's not just his livelihood at risk, these vets feel dishonored.

David A. Turner is an Officer for the Disabled American Veterans Chapter 102 in Cocke County, "A lot of the veterans have been shot, a lot of them have lost legs, they've lost arms and the current veterans we've got coming back from Afghanistan and Iraq, what's in their future?"

If a deal isn't reached soon, more than 3 million vets may not get their disability compensation.

"We have a lot of veterans in the county, that's what they live on," says Turner, a veteran himself.

Sgt. Roy Messer is a Vietnam Vet, he's worried about paying his bills if his benefits stop, "I''m going to have to move into a tent, back to Vietnam again."

"This is not just a show for the veterans but it's a show to get America working again, period!" says Turner.

And while this group in Newport can't be with the millions of vets in D.C. they're coming together at a Cocke County monument to remember those who lost their lives, their fellow soldiers and friends.

"The names on the monument right here are people that sacrificed their lives for our freedom," says Turner.

A freedom these vets will continue to fight for.

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