Patriotic, bright and brave, Nicolas came from a military family and signed up after 9/11. However, after many harrowing and horrible experiences, especially in Iraq, his solid base of sensitivities became shaken. His best friend was killed in front of him in battle. When he was returned to the United States, he was so traumatized he could not face simple everyday life. When he did not show up for service, the military declared he did not deserve being called a veteran, erased his service and took away his benefits.
William E. Cassara of William E. Cassara, PC, in Augusta, came to his rescue and convinced the military that Nic did not need to be ostracized, but needed medical help for his breakdown. He fought for Nicolas’ status and benefits and got him help. His efforts helped changed military regulations and helped many others suffering from PTSD.
William Cassara has a private practice, William E. Cassara PC in Augusta, Georgia, devoted to representing current and former military members in military-related matters. He has been defending service members around the world his entire career.
Nicolas was a soldier who was discharged with an “Other Than Honorable Discharge” in spite of evidence that his AWOL was due to the existence of severe PTSD brought on by his time in combat. William was successful in getting Nicolas’ discharge upgraded, allowing him to use the VA for treatment for his post-traumatic stress disorder. The case set a precedent that will help others suffering with PTSD.
He remembers his time with Nicolas, “I think Nicolas would agree—I was a comrade to him of a different kind, but I fought for him nonetheless. It was the least I could do, to help a soldier who was willing to die for this country, regain what he was owed.” Cassara adds, “and it is extremely rewarding to know that Nic’s case will affect future deserving veterans who suffer from the same.”