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Former POW, head of Ohio's vet services is retiring
Tom Moe says his successor will have to focus on unemployment rates for vets and speeding up VA services
by WKSU's STATEHOUSE BUREAU CHIEF KAREN KASLER


Reporter
Karen Kasler
 
In The Region:

The head of the state’s Department of Veterans Services has given Gov. John Kasich his two weeks’ notice, saying he’ll retire later this month. Col. Tom Moe says it’s been tough keeping up with the challenges of his job and with the needs of his family.

LISTEN: MOE ON RETIREMENT

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"It's just become more and more difficult to do both effectively and family comes first," Moe says. "After a long hard thought, I thought 'I need to make sure that somebody in this job can put in the continued attention that it needs.' It's really that simple and that hard, actually. It wasn't an easy decision."

Moe says one of his chief objectives has been to connect veterans with the benefits they are entitled to, and has been working through a pilot program with the Defense Department to identify veterans more quickly. That program will be expanded nationwide in the next year.

Moe says his successor will have to deal with the unemployment rate for veterans and with the bogged-down claims process with the Veterans Administration.

Moe was a prisoner of war in Vietnam for five years and has won many awards, including two Silver Stars, two Purple Hearts and the Bronze Star Medal for Valor. Moe retires on July 22; no word on who will take his place, but state law requires the Veterans Services’ head to have military experience.

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