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North Carolina veteran inaccurately declared dead

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FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Federal officials have discovered a North Carolina veteran isn't dead yet.

The Fayetteville Observer reported that 81-year-old Charles Covell of Fayetteville was surprised to learn that he had been declared dead by the Veterans Affairs Department last month.

Covell's wife realized something was wrong when a monthly disabilities payment was not deposited in their account. They learned a death certificate for a Charles Covell was filed in January.

Covell spent 12 years in the Army, serving with the 82nd Airborne Division and the 5th Special Forces Group at Fort Bragg.

A spokeswoman from U.S. Rep. Richard Hudson's office said Tuesday the VA has said the mistake had been corrected.

A VA spokesman said the department has an accuracy rate of 99.8 percent in halting payments to those who die.

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