Bill introduced to honor disabled veterans

MICHIGAN (WPBN/WGTU) -- A new bill was introduced in Lansing in hopes of honoring the lives of disabled veterans.

The new legislation would allow a widow or widower to keep their spouse's disabled veteran license plate.

Current law requires the plate to be returned to the Secretary of State office.

Calvin Murphy, a Vietnam War veteran with a disabled license plate said he had no idea that was the case, but is glad to see it might be changing.

"A veteran passes away, mainly disabled veterans, and they're forgotten," said Murphy. "So this is a way for that family, as they heal, to remember the deceased veteran."

Michigan Rep. Curt VanderWall introduced the bill.

"To keep that plate in memory of their spouse is just a meaningful and tangible piece of their spouses identity that they now can keep," said Rep. VanderWall.

Rep. VanderWall said he didn't understand why spouses couldn't keep the plates from the start.

"They gave their life and became injured for our country and their spouses lived through that," said Rep. VanderWall. "Now it just allows that spouse to keep another piece of their life connected to them."

If the bill goes through the spouses would be able to keep the plate on their cars and just renew it as if it were a normal plate.

"This is a step forward," said Murphy. "Curt is showing that he does have concern for veterans overall and we would like to see more of the more important issues dealt with, but this is a start."

The bill has been referred to a Transportation Committee where it will be further considered.

Rep. VanderWall said he hopes to see this bill go to the house floor within the next few weeks.

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