Law Students Team Up to Help Vets in Detroit

For two years, Hugh Rowan, a Vietnam-era veteran, tried unsuccessfully to get his Social Security disability benefits restored.

“To say that Social Security representatives are not very receptive to you by phone would be an understatement,” said Rowan, 55, whose health problems crippled his ability to walk and to work.

Now, Rowan is no longer homebound and credits a University of Detroit Mercy law student and professor for turning his life around. Shortly after contacting the law school’s pilot veterans clinic, Social Security officials agreed to not only restore Rowan’s monthly benefits, but also to award him pay for the two years his benefits were wrongfully cut off, he said.

“It was very dramatic,” said Rowan, a Detroiter who served in the Air Force. “Two years without having income and the (resolution) happened almost instantaneously. I felt it was a true blessing.”

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