A-76785, JULY 28, 1936, 16 COMP. GEN. 77

A-76785: Jul 28, 1936

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ARE NOT ENTITLED TO PRIVATE MEDICAL AND DENTAL TREATMENT AT PUBLIC EXPENSE. 1936: THERE ARE BEFORE ME FOR CONSIDERATION THE CLAIMS OF THE CRAWFORD CLINIC AND SOUTH MISSISSIPPI INFIRMARY. THERE APPEARS BUT ONE CLAIM OF $5 ON ACCOUNT OF CAPTAIN MOORE WHICH CLAIM IS ASSERTED TO REPRESENT CONSULTATION SERVICE RENDERED BY DR. OF WHICH $145 IS CLAIMED BY THE CLINIC AND INFIRMARY. ATTACHED TO THE VOUCHERS COVERING CLAIMS ON ACCOUNT OF FIRST LIEUTENANT EVANS ARE CERTIFICATES AS FOLLOWS: CERTIFICATE I CERTIFY THAT THE INCAPACITY OF 1ST LT. IN THIS CASE WAS NOT THE RESULT OF MISCONDUCT ON HIS PART. THAT THE INDEBTEDNESS FOR TREATMENT (MEDICAL) WAS INCURRED IN GOOD FAITH. THAT THE CHARGES ARE REASONABLE.

A-76785, JULY 28, 1936, 16 COMP. GEN. 77

MEDICAL TREATMENT - PRIVATE - ARMY RESERVE OFFICERS INJURED WHILE MAKING VOLUNTARY FLIGHTS ARMY RESERVE OFFICERS ON ACTIVE DUTY INJURED WHILE VOLUNTARILY FLYING AT THEIR OWN RISK, NOT UNDER ORDERS, AND WITHOUT ANY SPECIAL AUTHORITY FOR SUCH FLIGHT FROM AN APPROPRIATE MILITARY SUPERIOR, ARE NOT ENTITLED TO PRIVATE MEDICAL AND DENTAL TREATMENT AT PUBLIC EXPENSE.

DECISION BY ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL ELLIOTT, JULY 28, 1936:

THERE ARE BEFORE ME FOR CONSIDERATION THE CLAIMS OF THE CRAWFORD CLINIC AND SOUTH MISSISSIPPI INFIRMARY, W. W. CRAWFORD, M.D., ETHEL CALLIHAN, LOIS JAMES, AND GRACE WARD, NURSES, AND OF THE DAVIDSON DENTAL SUPPLY CO., FOR HOSPITALIZATION, PROFESSIONAL SERVICES AND DENTAL EQUIPMENT ASSERTEDLY FURNISHED CAPTAIN VINCENT B. MOORE, AIR CORPS RESERVE, AND FIRST LIEUTENANT LEA A. EVANS, QUARTERMASTER CORPS RESERVE, U.S. ARMY, BETWEEN APRIL 11, 1935 AND MAY 2, 1935. BOTH OFFICERS ENTERED THE CLINIC OR INFIRMARY APRIL 11, 1935. MOORE DEPARTED APRIL 12, 1935, AND EVANS ON MAY 2, 1935.

THERE APPEARS BUT ONE CLAIM OF $5 ON ACCOUNT OF CAPTAIN MOORE WHICH CLAIM IS ASSERTED TO REPRESENT CONSULTATION SERVICE RENDERED BY DR. CRAWFORD. THE CLAIMS ON ACCOUNT OF FIRST LIEUTENANT EVANS AMOUNT TO $317.53, OF WHICH $145 IS CLAIMED BY THE CLINIC AND INFIRMARY; $35 BY DR. CRAWFORD PERSONALLY; $25 BY ETHEL CALLIHAN; $70 BY LOIS JAMES; $37 BY GRACE WARD, AND $5.53 BY THE DAVIDSON DENTAL SUPPLY COMPANY.

ATTACHED TO THE VOUCHERS COVERING CLAIMS ON ACCOUNT OF FIRST LIEUTENANT EVANS ARE CERTIFICATES AS FOLLOWS:

CERTIFICATE

I CERTIFY THAT THE INCAPACITY OF 1ST LT. LEA A. EVANS, Q.M. C.-RES., IN THIS CASE WAS NOT THE RESULT OF MISCONDUCT ON HIS PART; THAT THE INDEBTEDNESS FOR TREATMENT (MEDICAL) WAS INCURRED IN GOOD FAITH; THAT THE CHARGES ARE REASONABLE; THAT TREATMENT WAS AN ACTUAL EMERGENCY; THAT THE PATIENT, 1ST. LT. LEA A. EVANS, Q.M. C.-RES., WAS ON AUTHORIZED PASS FROM 1:00 P.M. 4/11/35 TO :00 P.M. 4/11/35; AND THAT THE CHARGES COME WITHIN THE PROVISIONS OF LETTER FROM THE ADJUTANT GENERAL, APRIL 3, 1934 (APPARENTLY CHANGED TO JUNE 1, 1934.)

(SIGNED) VINCENT B. MOORE,

(RANK AND ORGANIZATION) CAPT., AC-RES.

COMMANDING OFFICER.

THE ORIGINAL VOUCHERS COVERING THE VARIOUS ITEMS CLAIMED ALSO CONTAIN CERTIFICATES BY CAPTAIN MOORE THAT FIRST LIEUTENANT EVANS' STATUS "WAS ON AUTHORIZED PASS.' THIS OFFICE HAS HELD THAT UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES, AS WHERE THE CONDUCT OF THE INDIVIDUAL IS SUCH AS TO INCREASE THE POSSIBILITY OR PROBABILITY OF INJURY, AN OFFICER OR ENLISTED MAN ON A PASS OF 24 HOURS OR LESS MAY NOT BE ENTITLED TO CIVILIAN HOSPITALIZATION AND MEDICAL TREATMENT AT THE EXPENSE OF THE UNITED STATES AS IN A CONSTRUCTIVE DUTY STATUS. 10 COMP. GEN. 40; 15 ID., 689. SEE ALSO THE DECISION OF THE UNITED STATES COURT OF CLAIMS IN MORROW V. UNITED STATES, 65 CT.CLS. 35.

CAPTAIN MOORE SUBSEQUENTLY EXECUTED NEW CERTIFICATES WHICH ALSO ARE ATTACHED TO THE VOUCHERS AND READ AS FOLLOWS:

I CERTIFY THAT THE INJURIES OF 1ST LT. LEA A. EVANS, QM-RES WERE INCURRED IN PERFORMANCE OF DUTY AND NOT AS A RESULT OF HIS OWN MISCONDUCT; LIEUT. EVANS WAS NOT ABSENT FROM HIS STATION WITH OR WITHOUT LEAVE AT THE TIME OF THE ACCIDENT. PREVIOUS CERTIFICATES CERTIFYING THAT LIEUT. EVANS WAS ON AUTHORIZED LEAVE AT THE TIME HIS INJURIES WERE INCURRED WERE SIGNED BY ME THROUGH MISAPPREHENSION.

BOTH OFFICERS WERE ON ACTIVE DUTY WITH THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS AT CAMP MISSISSIPPI F-7, NEW AUGUSTA, MISSISSIPPI, ON THE MORNING OF APRIL 11, 1935. WHETHER THEIR INJURIES WERE INCURRED UNDER CIRCUMSTANCES ENTITLING THEM TO CIVILIAN HOSPITALIZATION AND MEDICAL TREATMENT DEPENDS ON OTHER FACTS.

A BOARD OF OFFICERS, CONSISTING OF TWO CAPTAINS AND ONE FIRST LIEUTENANT, CONVENED TO INQUIRE INTO THE INJURY OF FIRST LIEUTENANT EVANS REPORTED ON APRIL 18, 1935, AS FOLLOWS:

1. DATES COVERING PERIOD OF ENCAMPMENT OR AUTHORIZED INSTRUCTION: NOVEMBER 15, 1934 TO MAY 14, 1935.

2. DATE OF INJURY: APRIL 11, 1935.

3. PLACE: AIRPORT, CAMP. MISS. F-7, NEW AUGUSTA, MISS.

4. CIRCUMSTANCES: INJURIES DUE TO AIRPLANE CRASH AT ABOVE-NAMED FIELD. AT ABOUT 6:00 P.M. APRIL 11, 1935, AT C.C.C. CAMP MISS. F-7, NEW AUGUSTA, MISSISSIPPI, CAPTAIN V. B. MOORE, A.C. 399TH ATK.SQ. AND LIEUT. LEA A. EVANS, Q.M.C., RESERVE, WERE INVOLVED IN AN AIRPLANE ACCIDENT OR CRASH IN WHICH BOTH WERE PHYSICALLY INJURED; LIEUT. EVANS BEING THE MOST SERIOUSLY INJURED OF THE TWO. THE AIRPLANE USED FOR THE FLIGHT WAS PILOTED BY CAPTAIN MOORE. LIEUTENANT EVANS ALONE WAS A PASSENGER DURING THE FLIGHT WHICH RESULTED IN THIS ACCIDENT. THE AIRPLANE USED WAS PRIVATELY OWNED AND WAS PROPERTY OF MR. JOHN B. BEAUMONT, A CIVILIAN WHO LIVES AT HATTIESBURG, MISSISSIPPI. THE FLIGHT WAS CONDUCTED AS A DEMONSTRATION FOR A CLASS OF CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS ENROLLEES WHO ARE ENROLLED IN THE CAMP EDUCATIONAL SCHOOL UNDER THE SUPERVISION OF THE CAMP EDUCATIONAL ADVISOR AND CAPTAIN V. B. MOORE, WHO IS COMMANDING OFFICER OF C.C.C. CAMP F-7, NEW AUGUSTA, MISSISSIPPI. NO RENT OR HIRE WAS INVOLVED AND NO ONE CONCERNED WAS BENEFITTED BY PERSONAL GAINS SINCE THE PLANE WAS BORROWED WITH THE CONSENT OF THE OWNER FOR THE DEMONSTRATION ABOVE MENTIONED. THE AIRPLANE CRASH OR ACCIDENT WAS APPARENTLY CAUSED BY (WHAT IS COMMONLY CALLED) THE FLIPPER CONTROLS JAMMING, FORCING THE PLANE DOWN AT SUCH AN ANGLE AND AT SUCH A RATE OF SPEED AS TO CAUSE THE PROPELLER TO STRIKE THE GROUND BEFORE THE LANDING GEAR, THEREBY CAUSING CONSIDERABLE DAMAGE TO THE PROPELLOR. THE SPEED OF THE PLANE AND IT'S POSITION ON THE LANDING FIELD AT THE TIME NECESSITATED AN ATTEMPTED TAKE-OFF IN ORDER TO AVOID COLLISION AT THE EDGE OF THE FIELD. THE PLANE CRASHED ON IT'S LEFT WING AND NOSE IN A POTATO FIELD, APPROXIMATELY 75 YARDS FROM THE NEWLY CONSTRUCTED FLYING FIELD ON THE FOREST PROJECT, C.C.C. CAMP F-7, NEW AUGUSTA, MISSISSIPPI. BOTH OFFICERS CONCERNED WERE ON AN ACTIVE DUTY STATUS AND NEITHER WAS ABSENT WITH OR WITHOUT LEAVE. CAPTAIN MOORE AND LIEUT. EVANS WERE BOTH RENDERED UNCONSCIOUS AND WERE IMMEDIATELY REMOVED TO THE SOUTH MISSISSIPPI INFIRMARY, HATTIESBURG, MISSISSIPPI. NEITHER OF THESE OFFICERS WAS UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF INTOXICATING LIQUOR OR DRUGS AT THE TIME OF THE ACCIDENT AND BOTH WERE VOLUNTARILY FLYING AT THEIR OWN RISK, NOT UNDER ORDERS, AND WITHOUT ANY SPECIAL AUTHORITY FOR SUCH FLIGHT FROM AN APPROPRIATE MILITARY SUPERIOR.

IN 15 COMP. GEN. 1033, IT WAS HELD THAT AN OFFICER OF THE AIR CORPS OF THE ARMY UNDER ORDERS TO PARTICIPATE REGULARLY AND FREQUENTLY IN AERIAL FLIGHTS, WHO WAS INJURED WHILE MAKING A VOLUNTARY FLIGHT IN A PRIVATE CIVILIAN PLANE BORROWED FOR THE OCCASION AND ACCOMPANIED BY AN ARMY ENLISTED MAN AS A VOLUNTARY PASSENGER, FOR PERSONAL CONVENIENCE AND PLEASURE, IN WHICH FLIGHT SAID OFFICER WAS NOT REQUIRED TO PARTICIPATE BY ORDERS OF COMPETENT AUTHORITY, WAS NOT INCAPACITATED FOR FLYING BY REASON OF AN "AVIATION ACCIDENT" AND WAS NOT ENTITLED TO INCREASED PAY FOR FLYING DURING THE PERIOD OF RESULTANT INCAPACITY.

IN 19 COMP. DEC. 635, IT WAS HELD AN OFFICER OF THE MARINE CORPS SERIOUSLY INJURED DURING THE EVENING WHILE PROPERLY IN THE PURSUIT OF PLEASURE AND RECREATION AT A CARNIVAL, ALTHOUGH IN A DUTY STATUS, AS DISTINGUISHED FROM BEING ABSENT WITH OR WITHOUT LEAVE, WAS NOT ENTITLED TO CIVILIAN HOSPITALIZATION AND MEDICAL TREATMENT AT THE EXPENSE OF THE UNITED STATES BY REASON THAT THE AMUSEMENT IN WHICH HE WAS ENGAGING WAS NOT REQUIRED OF HIM AS AN OFFICER, WAS UNUSUAL IN CHARACTER ATTENDED BY MORE OR LESS DANGER AND HIS ACTION IN INDULGING THEREIN VOLUNTARILY AND ON HIS OWN INITIATIVE RESULTED IN HIS ASSUMING THE RISK OF BEING INJURED AND THE CONSEQUENCES NATURALLY FOLLOWING SUCH INJURY. MOREOVER, LIEUTENANT EVANS WAS A RESERVE OFFICER IN THE QUARTERMASTER CORPS OF THE ARMY AND NOT AN AIR CORPS RESERVE OFFICER AND IT WAS NO PART OF HIS DUTY TO TAKE AERIAL FLIGHTS EITHER AS A PILOT OR AS A PASSENGER UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES HERE INVOLVED.

THE PARTICIPATION IN FLYING HAVING BEEN VOLUNTARY AND NOT HAVING BEEN PERFORMED AS A PART OF, OR WHILE IN THE PERFORMANCE OF THEIR ASSIGNED DUTIES, THERE IS NO AUTHORITY FOR USING APPROPRIATED MONEYS OF THE UNITED STATES TO PAY THE CLAIM OF $5 ON ACCOUNT OF CONSULTATION IN THE CASE OF CAPTAIN MOORE OR THE CLAIMS AMOUNTING TO $317.53 ON ACCOUNT OF HOSPITALIZATION, MEDICAL SERVICES, AND DENTAL EQUIPMENT STATED TO HAVE BEEN PROVIDED IN THE CASE OF FIRST LIEUTENANT EVANS. THE CLAIMS MUST BE REGARDED AS THE PERSONAL PRIVATE OBLIGATIONS OF THE TWO OFFICERS WHO WERE THE BENEFICIARIES THEREOF AND THEY ARE THEREFORE HEREBY DISALLOWED.