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VA pays tribute to employees from Fort Hood

By Ed O'Keefe

The Department of Veterans Affairs on Tuesday paid tribute to two employees who were among those killed during last Thursday's shootings at Fort Hood, and a third who was injured. All three employees were preparing to deploy overseas as uniformed members of the military.

Russell G. Seager, 51, a nurse practitioner at the Clement J. Zablocki VA Medical Center in Milwaukee and Juanita L. Warman, 55, a nurse practitioner at VA’s medical center in Perry Point, Md. were killed. Dorothy Carskadon, 47, a social worker and team leader at the VA Vet Center in Madison, Wis., was injured.

Seager was a captain in the Army Reserve set to leave on his first overseas deployment, according to a VA statement. Warman was a lieutenant colonel with the Maryland National Guard preparing to deploy to Iraq at the time of her death. Carskadon is an Army officer who was also preparing for her first deployment.

"I offer heart-felt condolences to the families of these dedicated VA employees,” Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki said in a statement. “They devoted their working lives to care for our veterans, and they died in uniform, preparing to safeguard our Nation’s freedom.” Shinseki will join President and Mrs. Obama and other government officials at Tuesday's memorial service at Fort Hood.

There are 18 VA employees stationed in a civilian capacity at Fort Hood, working at clinics and benefits processing offices. None of them were injured in the shooting, agency officials said.

More than 850 VA employees serve military commitments with the Reserve or National Guard units across the country each day, according to the department.

By Ed O'Keefe  | November 10, 2009; 10:00 AM ET
Categories:  Agencies and Departments  
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