Congressman Helps U.S. Veteran Get Money Back For Missing Gear - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Congressman Helps U.S. Veteran Get Money Back For Missing Gear

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FAIRMONT -

United States veterans all have thousands of stories to share, but not many are like Gerrad Branum's.

Branum served in the U.S. Army from 2001-2005. On his way home from Iraq, several of his bags went missing.

"My bags were lost in Iraq. A duffel, a ruck, and another ruck. Those bags had all my gear. My equipment," Branum said.

Nearly a decade after being discharged from the military, Branum received a letter stating that the IRS took nearly $1,600 from his tax return for that missing gear.

"Every piece of paper I signed that was considerably a field loss, it is proven there is a real thing as a field loss," he said.

Branum said he has received an outpouring of support by congressmen, senators, and those on Facebook.

Congressman David McKinley was one of those people. He reached out to Branum following our first report on the issue.

After talking to several government officials, he got back to Branum with good news.

"I got my money back. This congress member went through probably more hoops than most people. This person actually helped me out."

In the letter Branum received, it said Food Hood could not validate his debt. All of his money was put back into his account on Monday.

When we reached out to Congressman McKinley's office about his help, we received this statement:

"Congressman McKinley feels strongly about those who serve to defend and sacrifice for our freedom. He was happy to help Mr. Branum."

Branum said he can't thank everyone enough for the support he has received.

"The people we elect as our elected officials are going to stand up for what is right. Not what's wrong. The proof was in the documentation," Branum said.