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NEW HAVEN, CONN. — A federal judge in Connecticut has rejected a U.S. Army bid to dismiss a lawsuit by a Vietnam War veteran who claims he is wrongly being denied health care benefits.
Judge Warren Eginton ruled Tuesday in favor of 65-year-old William Dolphin of West Haven. The Army argued the lawsuit should be dismissed on technical grounds.
Dolphin was seriously wounded in combat in Vietnam in 1968 and received the Purple Heart. He was given a bad conduct discharge in 1974 after being accused of going AWOL. But he says he didn’t realize he was considered AWOL after leaving a hospital to convalesce at home.
Dolphin is suing for a discharge upgrade to honorable that would give him federal benefits to help treat his post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury.