It is with great sadness that we have to report that an unidentified U.S. military veteran committed suicide in the waiting room of a Veterans Affairs hospital in St. Louis.
Michelle Woodling, a city police officer, said the 62-year-old killed himself inside the John Cochran VA Medical Center about 4:19 a.m., the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
A U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs spokeswoman told the paper that the agency was “grieved’ to confirm that the veteran was found deceased.
“We are grieved to confirm that a Veteran was found deceased in our medical center early this morning,” spokeswoman Marcena C. Gunter said in an email. “Our deepest sympathies are with the Veteran’s family and loved ones, our medical center staff and the members of the community affected by this tragic incident.”
The circumstances leading up to the suicide remain unclear as well as how he killed himself.
Meanwhile, embattled Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin continues to hold the post. On Monday, a White House spokesman said President Donald Trump had confidence in Shulkin’s leadership “at this point in time,” Fox News reports.
Shulkin, the lone Obama administration holdover in Trump’s Cabinets fate has been in doubt since a blistering February report by the VA’s internal watchdog that found he had improperly accepted Wimbledon tennis tickets and his staff had doctored emails to justify his wife traveling to Europe with him at taxpayer expense.
Rest in peace and thank you for your service.