Broken Soldier's story:

"Dear Veterans, Friends, & Families' of...

Along with the Broken Soldiers documentary film crew, Dale Stevens and I visited Fabien for two days at VAC HQ in Charlottetown, PEI. This is, by far, the most difficult thing I have done as a Veteran advocate. My heart is breaking for Fabien.

Fabien is a wonderful, soft spoken, and artistic young man who should be spending his days in his home doing his artwork and living a relatively normal life. However, he has embarked on his hunger strike journey to express his discontent with VAC over the handling of his payment/deposit errors, which caused a ripple effect that essentially caused him to lose his home. He wants a public apology from VAC. He wishes to receive compensation from the gov't of Canada for damages due to VAC's bungling of his file. He should get both, but for the second, Fabien needs an attorney to file suit against the crown. I am not sure if Fabien understands this and it frightens me, because he is willing to go the distance. I do not believe he has an exit strategy other than death.

This is painful for me as his veteran brother, because I have been where Fabien has been, as many of us have.

Fabien is receiving great support from close friends and Captain [Retired] Sandy Brace. Sandy is not a disabled veteran, but a veteran that served an entire career looking after his own troops I am sure. I wonder where all the other older Veterans are who could be out supporting him? Bravo Zulu, Sandy.

Let me tell you who is not supporting him. THE ROYAL CANADIAN LEGION. In fact on Monday during a D-Day memorial at the cenotaph, which is almost across the street from Fabien, legion members and veterans gathered for this event. They marched/walked past Fabien at one point and not one of the vets/legion members acknowledged Fabien. No one from the legion has visited Fabien yet. I did see two RCL members tear up their membership cards in disgust.

During my time sitting with Fabien, a Korean War veteran stopped in front of us in his car. He had $20 in his hand and wanted to give this money to Fabien who, of course, declined. This man had spent 9.5 months in Korea and said that he two has been battling VAC for 50 years.

I will say that Fabien is being monitored by VAC security to ensure his safety and health. In my time with him, I had a few conversations with VAC staff, who say that the majority of employees inside of HQ are supportive of what he is doing. Dave from the VAC district office has been checking on Fabien every morning to monitor his health and well being. I want to say thanks to him and to security for watching over him.

Members from Veterans UN/NATO are visiting Fabien to check on him. Members of the CAV as well. Thank you.

Fabien gave a powerful interview for the Broken Soldiers film documentary. I hope he is around to see it next year when it comes out. For me I am home with my family now, but I am torn inside due to my loyalty to a fellow veteran brother who continues to hunger strike, but deserves better.

Dennis
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