A Tacoma veteran died waiting for heart surgery from the VA. His family has sued

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A Tacoma veteran who needed a new heart valve died after a Department of Veterans Affairs medical center waited too long to do his surgery, his widow’s lawsuit says.

George Walker was 75 when he died at home July 1, 2016 — days before he was scheduled for surgery at the VA Puget Sound Health Care System, and a little more than a week after doctors knew he needed the operation, the complaint says.

“They absolutely shouldn’t have sent him home,” said attorney Jessica Holman Duthie, who represents the family. She said Walker should have been in surgery within a day, and that she believes that would have happened at medical facilities outside the VA system.

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