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Shelbyville veteran's adaptive home remodel remains unfinished

'They don’t really give a darn about the veterans'
Jim Bott
Posted at 5:54 PM, Jun 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-02 06:38:15-04

SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF)  — A Tennessee veteran has been waiting a couple of years for his adaptive home remodel to be finished. It still isn't.

Veteran Jim Bott loves living in Shelbyville. He's known in town as the "pecan man."

“I have a hobby of selling pecans," Bott said.

It helps him cope.

"I did three tours in Vietnam. It’s where I came in contact with agent orange, which gave me the multiple myeloma cancer," he said.

That's why he said he was awarded a $100,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to adapt his home to his medical needs.

"I was told at that time it would be 90 to 100 days complete this,” Bott said.

Unfortunately, it's been two years and the construction is still a mess.

"Like they don’t really give a darn about the veterans," Bott said.

He cried because it's unlivable.

“Well, I have terminal cancer,” Bott said, “And I’d like to have this done.”

NewsChannel 5 called the contractor, and he would not go on camera. He said the delays are due to structural issues and other factors.

"At 5:45 last night somebody finally came out and fixed the air conditioning, so my paralyzed granddaughter has the AC now," Bott said.

His case manager at the VA told NewsChannel5 on the phone that they're slammed with demand.

“Some of the construction here is just so shoddy," Bott said.

He said he felt that taxpayer money is being taken advantage of, and he's even come out of his own pocket to help the project move along.

“Because of the cost overruns and the lack of initiative," Bott said.

NewsChannel 5 also reached out to the Veterans Benefits Administration about the situation. We're waiting to hear back from the Nashville office.