Hometown Heroes - Paul Labbe

Vietnam veteran
Published: Aug. 3, 2023 at 5:00 AM CDT
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - A veteran who spent years fighting for his disability benefits now spends his time helping other vets in the same situation. Paul Labbe was in Vietnam from 1968 to 1969 and was injured.

“The Veterans Administration lied about my service medical records and hospitalizations,” said Labbe. “They denied my disability. It took me years. My family had to struggle. I don’t other veterans to go what we went through.”

Labbe served his tour of duty and came home with not only head and hand injuries, but exposure to Agent Orange.

“A convict in a penitentiary can get into a court and have his case solved within 2 or 3 years,” said Labbe. “My veterans, it takes me 13, 17 years to finally get justice for them.”

Frederick Brouchet was in the 82nd Airborne and was severely injured in a parachute training accident in 1979. Paul has been helping him fight for benefits since 2007.

“It’s a blessing to all our veterans that’s got his attention,” said Brouchet. “That’s who he’s working for. The VA is not fighting like they should for us.”

“Veterans throughout the United States go through one court,” said Labbe. “Then they come back with an excuse that they’re trying to get you processed as soon as possible. If that were true, you would allow the veteran to go get his right from any court the same way any citizen can. Veterans are being discriminated against.”

Labbe tells veterans he’ll stay with their case until they win it or he dies. Brouchet is still fighting for his benefits, but feels confident with Labbe by his side.