• Veteran places VA-bashing billboards in central Florida


    ORLANDO, Fla. - A local veteran is footing the bill for a billboard bashing Veterans Affairs and health care.

    The investment is a big price to pay, but Roger Gagnon is hoping it will attract more people to a national movement advocating improved health care for veterans.

    A sign in Orlando cost Gagnon $775 and the one in Daytona Beach was more than $1,400.

    One of the billboards was placed along Goldenrod Road and State Road 408.

    The sign reads "VA is Lying, Veterans are Dying."

    There are 12 billboards placed across the nation.

    "It's literally a life or death situation," said Gagnon.

    Gagnon served his country as a U.S. Marine in Beirut in the 80s. Now, he serves fellow veterans from all over the nation who he meets on a Facebook page called "The VA is Lying."

    "I help guys get their claims through, help them though the process," said Gagnon.

    Gagnon said he learned how to do that the hard way when he needed regular visits, so that doctors could review his bloodwork to help control a seizure condition.

    Gagnon said he should have seen a doctor every three to four weeks, but instead, he had to wait six.

    "The VA says they have the waiting period down to less than 30 days. There's another lie," Gagnon said.

    Ultimately, he collapsed on a road just outside his home. Gagnon said one of his neighbors found him.

    Gagnon said he spent weeks in a coma and then he had more trouble.

    "When I was let go from the hospital, I was told see a neurosurgeon in three days. I saw a neurosurgeon three months later," said Gagnon.

    Gagnon said his story is not unique, and that's why the Facebook page has more than 10,000 likes.

    But local VA representatives said with more than 100,000 vets enrolled in the Orlando region, the number of likes on the Facebook page is low. Plus, they're from followers across the nation.

    For those struggling with the system, the VA said reaching out to the medical center does help.

    Gagnon insists he tried that.

    "The VA is killing people every single day," said Gagnon.

    Three signs went up in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on Monday. Those are expected to catch the attention of people attending a veterans' conference there on Tuesday.

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