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Honoring Our Heroes: Meet Robert Thelien

Nov 10, 2021
Press Release


Friends,
 
It has been a privilege to share with you a few stories highlighting our local veterans. Our veterans each come from different backgrounds and lived experiences, but a common value that they all share is incredible bravery. I would like to take the time to highlight a special hero:
 
Meet Robert Thelien, a veteran from Bakersfield. As a young man, Robert enlisted in the Army where he became a member of the 82nd Airborne Military Intel at Fort Bragg.
 
Since 2020, Robert has been in contact with the VA about having a medical procedure performed which would improve his mobility, decrease his severe pain, and allow him to once again be more active.

Over the last year, Robert has spent countless hours on the phone with the VA working to have his surgery approved. But every step of the way, he has faced burdensome VA bureaucracy, including contradictory information and never-ending telephone transfers which have made the road to recovery long and challenging.
 
Robert had enough and contacted my office earlier this year for help. I reached out to the VA Greater Los Angeles Care System on his behalf to obtain authorization through the VA’s Community Care Program. In less than 30 days, his surgery was scheduled and it took place last week. 
 
Robert was very appreciative for the help, and shared this: “Thank you for your time and kindness Congressman McCarthy in helping to get the V.A. to authorize this procedure. So I may stand on my own two feet again without severe pain and live an active life with my family.”

Robert
 

Robert has spent the last several years of his life in extreme pain. Our veterans should not have to be nearly bedridden in order to be taken seriously by the VA. 
 
It was a privilege to help expedite Robert’s case, and it would be a privilege to help any other veteran in our community who finds themselves in a position where they need a little extra help in getting a prompt answer from the VA.
 
If you or a loved one is facing similar challenges, please contact my office at (661) 327-3611. It would be an honor to help you.
 
May God Bless our American heroes,

Kevin McCarthy