Stutsman County veterans office serves area vets in need

Veterans can apply for services and assistance through the local Veterans Service Office located in the Stutsman County Law Enforcement Center.

David Bratton
The Veterans Service Office is located in the basement of the Stutsman County Law Enforcement Center. Veterans should call to make arrangements to be allowed into the secured area. Keith Norman / The Sun

Veterans make up about 5% of the population of Stutsman County and they often turn to David Bratton, Stutsman County veterans service officer, when they need assistance.

"We help veterans of the county and surrounding area access state and federal benefits," he said. "Our bread and butter is helping file disability claims."

There are 1,344 veterans in Stutsman County who utilize service from the U.S. Veterans Administration. That agency pays out about $12 million per year in disability compensation and pensions to veterans in the county. Medical services provided to veterans in the county amount to an additional $6 million each year.

"The most important thing is getting the veteran population what they deserve," Bratton said.


Bratton, himself a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom campaign where he served as a gunner on an M1 Abrams tank, said his agency is geared to provide service to veterans at all stages of their life after military service.

"For the newer vets, we help them arrange educational benefits," he said. "If we can't help them, we can put them in touch with the agency that can help."

Assistance also extends to people who sometimes want to know more about the military service of a family member. This can include identifying the unit the family member served in, what campaigns or battles the unit was involved in and any medals or commendations the family member may have received.

Access to the Veterans Service Office and other offices in the lower level of the Stutsman County Law Enforcement Center has recently changed for security reasons. The door to the stairs from the main floor of the building is now locked and people are asked to call the offices downstairs to be escorted to the lower level.

"We are open for business," Bratton said, "but it's a matter of letting us know you are here so we can let you in."

Reach the Stutsman County Veterans Service Office at 252-9043.

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