Marybeth from Gloucester, N.J., asked: "As a college student I am not able to help out our wounded soldiers financially. Are there any other ways I can help to make their lives easier? Are there any opportunities for work or volunteer work to help out soldiers? I am not in the medical field but I would love the opportunity to help in anyway because these men have done so much and deserve to be treated better than the conditions shown on World News."
Michelle Landay responded: Don't let them feel forgotten. If you live near a VA [Department of Veterans Affairs] hospital or military hospital, stop by and visit. Just a few minutes of your time a day means a lot to these guys. There may also be volunteer opportunities at the hospitals.
I couldn't be more grateful to the USMC [U.S. Marines] in standing behind, beside, and in front of their injured. They are doing everything in their power to assist their wounded in getting the care and treatment they need.
There is a nonprofit organization called the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund established by Marine wives who saw a need. This organization and the wonderful women who run it directly helps injured Marines and their families in their darkest hours. All funds go directly to the families in need. Without them, we would have lost our home a long time ago. Check them out online at http://www.semperfifund.org/.
Wade from Newport News, Va., asked: "Hi Cpl. Jeff Landay, my name is Wade Landes. I am a Junior at Menchville High School in Newport News, Va., and am in the AFJROTC program and plan on enlisting in the Marine Corps next year. I just saw your story on ABC News and thought it was amazing. You will always be in my prayers. How has the USMC treated you throughout all of your experiences there? How have they treated you after the accident? And i pray that you keep taking giant steps in recovery."
Jeff Landay responded: Honestly I am happy that I enlisted into the Marines because as they always have said [it's important to] take cares of all Marines! I have had great therapists to help me through my issues and they will still respect me as a Marine! It gets stressful from time to time but marine boot camp is goodl and that is half of the combat there and to build yourself up to fight through all situations.
Michelle Landay responded: The Marine Corps couldn't be more supportive of Jeff and our family during this time. They have showed great personal care and concern. Jeff's problems started with the medical retirement process and the Department of Defense, not the corps. Jeff is a very proud Marine. Thank you for your service and may God be with you on your journey. Thank you for your prayers.
Peter from Rochester, N.Y., said: "Hello Jeff, Thank you for serving our country. My question is do you have legal counsel assisting you with your claim? If not, I would be happy to discuss pro bono representation opportunities with you."
Michelle Landay responded: Jeff is currently being represented by JAG and PEBLOs. He is still dealing with medical retirement from the USMC, which means he is dealing with the Department of Defense. He cannot file a claim with the VA until he becomes medically retired. Thank you for your offer. We will be happy to consider your offer should it reach that point.
Brian from Kings Park, N.Y., said: "I work at the VAMC in N.Y. and was wondering if you put in a Claim for a Service Connection Disability through the Eligibility office in your local VAMC or maybe tried to put one in through the Regional Office. Also try with in the VAMC to see the OIF/OEF Patient Advocate for returning Iraq Veterans, they also may be helpful on who might be able to expedite your Claim(s). Good Luck, you deserve everything, EVERYTHING."
Michelle Landay responded: I'm not sure what the VAMC is. I will look it up online. Thank you for your suggestion. Also, thank you for your sentiments. Jeff, like every other injured service member we have encountered, is not looking for a "hand out." He's only asking for what he has earned.