Republican Congressman Tom Latham has emailed supporters today with an appeal for donations to a group that has offered to help pay for military funerals.
Because of the government shutdown, the Pentagon is not covering the costs of military funerals or paying out the 100-thousand dollar death benefit to the families of soldiers killed while on active duty. That means the families of four soldiers who were killed in Afghanistan last weekend are not getting those benefits. In an email to supporters, Congressman Latham says it is “absolutely wrong and disgusting” for the Pentagon to employ such a “heartless political strategy” during the shutdown.
Latham is urging his supporters to make a donation to The Fisher House Foundation, which is covering funeral costs and travel expenses so families “may receive the remains of their loved ones who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country,” Latham says. The Fisher House Foundation manages a scholarship program for the children of veterans and it runs the “Hero Miles” program that takes donated frequent flyer miles so the family members of injured soldiers can travel to a military hospital.