Guest columnist Alaina Foster serves as program administrator at the Alfred Lerner Veterans Service Center at the Eastern Campus of Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C(r)), in Highland Hills. The U.S. Air Force veteran followed in the footsteps of her father and grandfather, who both served in the military.
The U.S. Air Force taught me how to defend and serve my country. After four years in uniform, I felt confident in my skills and prepared for whatever challenge might present itself while on active duty.
Then I became a civilian veteran, and answers suddenly seemed a lot less clear.
I returned to Northeast Ohio after my tour of duty and — with a new baby to care for — focused on raising my family. As a veteran, I knew I had resources available to me. Unfortunately, I didn’t know how to access them.
For my daughter’s six-week checkup, I drove from Cleveland to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton so that she could be seen. The drive there and back covered more than 400 miles and took nearly seven hours.
It was also completely unnecessary.
I incorrectly assumed that I had to go to a base to use my military health care benefits. The doctor at…
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