WASHINGTON – Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie called his own department’s suicide hotline last night after yet another in a long line of scandals rocked the Department of Veterans Affairs last week, sources confirm.
Wilkie’s administration was already reeling from reports of 11 suspicious deaths at one facility, an alcoholic doctor who misdiagnosed more than 3,000 cases, and Captain America killing himself in a VA parking lot, when the latest scandal made headlines.
“Sounds about fucking right, a doctor sexually assaulting his patients,” Wilkie said as he took a swig of whiskey and changed a sign in his office to reflect zero days since the last scandal. “I haven’t had a decent night’s sleep since I took this job. Now I’m just one neo-Nazi physician assistant or spice-smoking nurse practitioner away from suck starting a pistol.”
Wilkie, a Navy Reserve veteran, current Air Force Reserve Colonel, and longtime Civil War buff, has been a cabinet member in the Trump administration for a near-record-shattering 13 months. To his credit, Wilkie has championed innovative technologies, medications, and an executive order to help combat what many argue is an epidemic of veteran suicides. But after the revelation that a VA doctor in West Virginia had sexually assaulted more than 10 patients, Wilkie called the very suicide hotline he helped establish.
“He was muttering to himself about handsy lab techs and drug-addled pharmacists when he picked up the phone and reached out for help,” said a VA staffer, who wished to remain anonymous. “The next thing I know, he’s sobbing loudly and there is a pistol on the floor.”
“I didn’t even know Air Force officers knew what guns were.”
Though Wilkie spoke briefly with a counselor on the VA’s hotline, sources say he was placed on hold for several hours and eventually just gave up. Witnesses claim another veteran talked Wilkie down and ensured he received the care he needed from a veteran run not-for-profit.
(Paul Sharpe and Addison Blu contributed to this article).