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Published: Wednesday, 1/5/2005

Toledo: House of Adonis helps disabled veterans

The nonprofit House of Adonis has added a new component to help local disabled veterans. The organization's Disabled Veterans in Europe program sends needed supplies to U.S. veterans overseas.

Organization co-founder Sherry Burden's brother, Steven T. Burden, a disabled U.S. veteran living in Heilbronn, Germany and a former Toledo resident, said he has helped American veterans overseas collect money from disability claims and plans to do the same for veterans locally.

He said that over eight years, he has helped veterans overseas win 253 medical claims from the federal government totaling nearly $10 million, despite there being no official chapter to Disabled Veterans of America in Europe.

Dan Foote, a representative in U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur's office, said he has had conversations with Ms. Burden about her brother's efforts and said there are many American veterans in Europe who could benefit from claims help.

Mr. Burden, speaking from Germany, said he plans to work through the House of Adonis, called Disabled Veterans of Europe/House of Adonis, to start assisting local veterans who need medical claims filed. He said that based on his success rate in Germany, he can help veterans who feel they have not been helped sufficiently by other veteran organizations.

Ms. Burden said the House of Adonis work with veterans will also build pride in the children they serve and encourage them to recognize the people who have paid the price for their freedom.

Mr. Burden designed and developed the Cold War Veterans Memorial in Heilbronn, Germany, in memory of the American veterans who served in the military in Europe during the Cold War years.

"It was the veterans who worked to keep this country safe," Ms. Burden said. "It's very important for us to support them anyway we can. They are responsible for us living the kind of life we do today."

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