VA holds claims clinic to help veterans who never received it

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ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - The Department of Veterans Affairs held a veterans benefits clinic to help dozens of veterans on Friday.

They went to get help from a woman who promised to get them what they needed, but they say she never followed up.

Army veteran Joseph Tyree knows filing benefits with the VA can be a complicated process, so he asked for help from Charlotte Krantz.

"About a month later, she told me I've been approved for a grant for a new home and that everything was proceeding accordingly," recalled Tyree.

WSLS 10 met the Buchannan woman last year after she opened a veteran's services office to help vets navigate through the process; however, months after filling out his paperwork, Tyree said he got the runaround.

"I finally started looking into it myself and come to find out nothing has ever been filed," said Tyree

He's not the only one. Dozens of veterans said they went through the same thing with Krantz.

"I was very disappointed. I mean I thought the lady was on the up and up. And I don't like being tricked like that," said William Wells, a US Air Force veteran.

"We wanted to make sure we could do what we could to fix the situation. That's the bottom-line," said Keith Wilson, the director of the Roanoke VA Regional Office.

Wilson said in order help veterans with claims, the VA requires an individual or group to go through an accreditation process.

"So we verify that the individuals and groups have the skills that they need to assist the veterans properly," continued Wilson.

He said Krantz never did.

We wanted to ask her what happened but couldn't. Krantz is being held in the Botetourt County Jail, charged with three felonies; two for bad checks and one for receiving money under false pretenses.

When we talked to her last year, she said she didn't get paid for the work she did for veterans.

"I am in this to make sure these veterans get the benefits they deserve," said Krantz during the previous interview.

It's still unclear why veterans claims were never filed.

"They had no record of anything from her being filed in my name. They didn't even know who she was," said Tyree.

The charges filed against Krantz are unrelated to her work with the VA.

The clinic is open until 8 p.m. at the Fellowship Hall at Buchanan Baptist Church.