October 3rd, 2008

Pensions and employment for WWII veterans

Googled: "u.s. military pensions," "veterans' benefits," "military pension cut-off," variations thereof, and spent a significant amount of time tooling around on various military websites.

I have a character who was in the Navy during WWII, got sent home after being blinded in one eye, and presumably collects some form of pension or benefits. Would this last for the rest of his life/be enough to live on? If he then gets a decent job, does the government cut him off?

(Sorry about the barrage of random questions lately.)

fat impeding diagnosis?

My story isn't entirely realistic, but I'm trying to make certain elements realistic when possible.

My MC is at the hospital and she has some mysterious flesh problem that has essentially made a nasty looking green-black hole in her skin.

One of the doctors is going to say something that, somehow, implies that she has too much body fat for them to really tell the extent of the problem.

Now I need any, any, any vaguely believable reason why fat would distort their ability to measure the severity of this.

I've googled various combos of fat, injury, distort, distortion but haven't found anything. This is present-day, btw, so the scientific answer, sadly, does not involve wizards.

Meh. Blood and DNA.

Searched google with about 30 different combinations of human blood, blood, DNA, decompose, deteriorate, decay, time, timeframe, time limit...

Here's my question. If a fairly large amount of human blood was spilled/bled/whatever onto a wooden floor (not sealed, if it's important, but pretty nonporous), and left open to the air (and humidty/temperature changes - the door of the room is left open to the outside), how long after it's left there will it be possible to get a DNA result?

I'm not looking for 'courts will accept this', just if it will come out well enough to confirm suspicions of who might have bled on said floor.

There's copious amounts, if it matters, and three different people bled on the floor. There might be some mixing of the blood, but if they took samples from several different places, they'd be able to get an uncontaminated sample.

The floor hasn't been swept or washed in about 2 years, and the room had been sealed up for that time, so it's probably pretty dusty, if that helps.

I'm hoping it will be a week or so, maybe less... but who knows?