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TOPEKA – A high-level, Topeka-based Veterans Affairs official has been fired following an investigation into inappropriate conduct involving sexually charged correspondence.

Hundreds of messages, most made during regular business hours, reveal that former Health Resource Center director Robert Downs and a female VA employee exchanged salacious chat messages for more than two years. The two used an internal VA system from at least March 21, 2014, to April 29, 2016.

“It was a pathetic action of a middle-aged man trying to rediscover his youth,” Downs said in an interview on Thursday. “I’m ashamed of myself.” More

Latest News for Vets

Vets Views

  • Congressional bills recognize Cold War service and assist Purple Heart recipients
    Congress is also considering a bill, H.R. 1379 that would make all Purple Heart Medal recipients eligible for Post-9/11 GI Bill education benefits. More

    Afghanistan vet fought to get his dog back, now he’s fighting to help other vets
    After returning to civilian life, Pond struggled to find his footing as he waded through school, only breathing again when he was reunited with the bomb-sniffing dog he served with.   More

    Oxytocin For PTSD? Researchers Begin Clinical Trial To Test 'Love Hormone'-Based Therapies
     A team of researchers that has previously studied the potential for the use of the so-called "love hormone" More

    Local vet urges changes in Department of Veterans Affairs rules on foreclosures Gonzalez, a 62-year-old Vietnam War veteran, is on the verge of homelessness, due to a string of circumstances that could   More

    State VA says judge can fire officer
    Little River County Judge Mike Cranford was within his rights when he recently terminated Veteran Service Officer   More

    Combat Veteran Opens Up About His Traumatic Brain Injury And Post Traumatic Stress Disorder In His Book “BRAIN PAIN.”
    Major Jones began this project as a cathartic journey and to share his lessons from years of fighting his "Brain Pain." That's how he’s described the headaches and anxiety to his doctors since first being hit. More

    Vet who once spiraled now supports, connects comrades with similar struggles
    Adam Armstrong knows about conflict – the global kind and the internal kind. More

    Albany area vets get less VA therapy, but support each other
    They don't get as much professional help with their PTSD as they used to, but a dozen or so Vietnam veterans are doing what they can to keep each other strong. More

    Changes in Veterans Benefits Ahead: Plan Accordingly
    The Veterans Administration offers assistance to low-income veterans and surviving spouses, 65 years and older, through its Special Pension or Aid and Attendance programs. More

    What Is Something Veterans Can Do To Help Reform Veterans Affairs?

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