Filipino Veterans Got $214 Million from U.S. Last Year

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MANILA--Thousands of Filipino World War II veterans or their family members last year received $214.4 million in benefits and services from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), according to the U.S. Embassy.

More than 18,500 veterans or their survivors received pension payments ($186.5 million); one-time equity compensation payments ($15.07 million); medical services ($10.7 million), and education-related funds ($2.12 million), a VA report said.

For this year, the U.S. government has allocated $192 million (about P8.25 billion), or $16 million (about P688 million) per month, in disability payments to approximately15,000 beneficiaries.

“These monthly payments are in addition to the one-time lump sum payments made to Filipino World War II veterans or their dependents as part of the Filipino Veterans Equity Compensation Program (FVECP),” the report said.

Since 2009, the VA has released over $221 million in one-time FVECP payments to some 18,530 eligible veterans who served under U.S. command in World War II.

Ambassador Harry Thomas, Jr. cited the “unparalleled service and sacrifice” of both American and Philippine war veterans. Speaking at a Veterans Day rites at the American Cemetery in Taguig City, Thomas said, “We owe our service members and veterans a debt of gratitude.”