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NC PBA turns their back on me and my children

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Posted about 7 years ago

 

Well, it's been almost a year since the untimely death of my husband , Sgt. James Heath Hardin,35. Heath suffered Sudden Cardiac Death while on foot pursuit of a convicted felon that just stolen gas. The foot chase lasted approximately 2 miles . When the terrain became unpassable the officers stopped to regroup. Heath then collapsed and CPR was started. Heath passed away on scene. Heath was what appeared to be in excellent shape. The reason I'm writing this blog is to make the Law Enforcement Family and general public aware of the injustice that me and my children and possibly other families may have gone through. Heath was a member of The NC PBA. He had the utmost faith in that organization .That no matter what, they would stand behind him ,if it was a legal issue or if he died in the line of duty ( or so he thought). A few months after his passing I contacted them in reference to his death. Needless to say the cancelled his membership and put me through to their staff Attorney , Mr. Dukes . He explained to me that according to their provisions that Heath did not meet the criteria for a Line of Duty Death. Imagine that... Honestly, they never even sent a condolence card or sent a representitive to his Wake or Funeral. I had to pay for my husbands funeral out of my pocket , still waiting to hear from the DOJ in reference to the PSOB claim and I had to hire and attorney to fight for workmans compensation that I have been denied. All over stolen gas. My husband gave his life to protect the citizens of our town . It's not that I'm looking to capatalize on the passing of my husband. I'm trying to take care of my two small children who now have no father. Fighting for my husbands benefits is the last thing that I should have to do. I need to be able to focus on being a mother to my children and trying to put the pieces back together of what's left of my family. It's a hard pill to swallow. So, if your planning on joining the PBA ... I hope this makes you think twice.

Auguste_gusteau_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 7 years ago

 

My condolences on the passing of your husband. If you have not contacted Concerns of Police Survivors I would recommend you do that immediately. There are some provisions that exist for officers who die in the line of duty as a result of a heart attack. I am not familiar enough with them to tell you exactly what they all are.

the website is www.nationalcops.org You can also find information on the local NC chapter of COPS along with chapter contact information for NC there.


"Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway"
John Wayne 1907-1979

Tn_1__max50

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Rate This | Posted about 7 years ago

 

May husband rest in peace.

Pa010032_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 7 years ago

 

I hope it all works out and my condolences

Img_3413_sq90_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 7 years ago

 

shellyhardin, I am sorry for your loss. Did the PD rule it Line of Duty? What about the Medical Examiner? I ask these questions because we had an Officer with the RPD (Tom Clark) who died last year from a heart attack that also fits into the the Hometown Heroes Act your husband does. Many Departments aren't even aware of the Hometown Heroes Act. Mine wasn't until I called the Chief's Office the day after Tom died to inform them it was Line of Duty. Since I was working for the RPD at the time and am the VP of WNY COPS, I was in the Chief's Office daily assisting with the filing. Unfortunately the PSOB is only starting to rule on these deaths. It became law in 2003 and as I said onl;y now are they starting to rule. Be aware they do intense background medical history. With Tom, they have asked for the last 10 yrs medical history. They denied NYSP Investigator Tom Oneill who was on duty and wrestled with a POS that was robbing a store. After the suspect was arrested he collapsed at the scene and CPR was done. He died and the PSOB denied the claim because he had minor blockage to the heart, so they said he could have had a heart attack at any time. This Investigator was due to retitre in three weeks! There is an appeal in place, but who knows?

I can only imagine your frustration, and you will remain in my thoughts and prayers.

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Rate This | Posted about 7 years ago

 

WOW. I am so sorry for your loss and the troubles you are going through.

We need to start sticking up for each other! make phone calls, write letters, something!!

This is uncalled for!!

STAND UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1979_max50

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Rate This | Posted about 7 years ago

 

Shelly, first and foremost you have my deepest condolences on the loss of your husband. Know that he was a real hero simply for performing his duties throughout his career. It is a shame what is being done to our Officers and their families once they are hurt or killed. This is one more reason that the Police Officers Death & Disability Act needs to be passed. Check it out folks and copy and print this and fax it and mail it to your Congressmen and Senators. We can get this passed and help people like Shelly and her kids.

“Police Officers Death and Disability Act”

As Americans of the United States, we pride ourselves on the fact that we are a supportive nation; one that stands strong and fights for freedom in our country. When we hear this we immediately think of those in the military, rightly so. However, there is another group of men and women that face the same adversity and immediate danger everyday that go unnoticed. The police officers, the men and women in blue, that serve and protect us civilians 24/7. These individuals do their jobs just as honorably as those in the military, but yet, are not given the same respect or viewed on equal grounds as to those who are actively serving in either the Army, Air Force, Navy and Marines. Why? Some of these same individuals did serve their country and then chose a life style that is parallel to the military in many respects, but are not entitled to the same benefits should he/she become injured to the capacity of no longer being able to perform their job or worse killed in the line of duty. Who protects those that protect us? What happens to these individuals that are taken down in the prime of their lives and leave a family behind or have a whole new other lifestyle to adjust to? One of continuous physical pain, mental anguish, and the memory of what was at one time, what life used to be like prior to “that day.”

It is out of respect and gratitude to those individuals that risked their lives and lost theirs while performing their job as they were trained, to serve and protect. Two little words, (serve, protect) that have such a powerful message and sometimes tragic consequence is the result. Who knew that those two words (serve, protect) came with just as much of a high price as freedom does?

Therefore, a proposal supporting these men and women is being put into place, called the, “Police Officers Death and Disability Act.” This federally funded act would provide protection to those who did the protecting and can no longer actively serve in that role. Through this proposal would enable these police officers to have their medical bills paid for by the government and that their families’ medical expenses are covered as well. We, as a nation, do this for our Veterans, why not police officers who have provided the same service, but only right next to us, not overseas, not 3 states away or on a gulf coast somewhere, but as local/state police officers that patrol our street/city at night while we are sleeping and during the day when we are at work. These men and women are protecting us, where ever we may be and our neighborhoods while we are not there. In this line of duty, these men and women work 24/7 for us civilians, to protect us and our families. By having this act supported, this would be the greatest, “thank you” to give back to these police officers at the local and state levels and provide us civilians the opportunity to turn around and protect those that did the protecting.

The following provisions will apply to the “Police Officers Death and Disability Act:”

If a Law Enforcement Officer should become injured in the line of duty to the extent that they are no longer able to perform their duties as a Law Enforcement Officer and must retire due to disability, then the Officer shall be determined to fall under this act. Disabled/retired Officers will become eligible for 100% paid medical coverage at the date of retirement paid for by the Federal Government under this bill. The Officer, spouse and children 18 years of age and under, or those who are 21 years of age and under if they remain a full-time student will also be covered under this provision. Those covered under this Bill shall be issued a medical identification card at no cost and it will serve as an insurance card accepted by all licensed medical practitioners and facilities and all charges are to be paid by the United States Government.

If the police officer should be killed in the LOD, the surviving spouse and children under the age of 18 or 21 if the child is in school will continue their medical coverage 100%. After 1 year, from said date, the medical coverage for the surviving spouse would terminate, however the children would remain covered fully 100% until the ages of 18 or 21, if the child is in school.

Should the surviving spouse remarry before the 1 year said date, coverage for the spouse is terminated immediately upon remarrying. However, the children would maintain 100% medical coverage until the ages of 18 or 21 are reached if the child or children are still in school.