Why the hostility by some posters towards people who are clearly distressed and upset at their (the) situation? Clearly many of the older workers at HPE were impacted by the WFR, chances are they were top performers and thus expensive to keep. When you cross your 40's and are close to retirement, it is very hard to find another job no matter what your skills or abilities are, plus many people have not applied for a job in a very long time and the process of getting yourself ready for the job market can be daunting. So this distress and upset should be understandable to most anyone with an adult emotional intelligence.
It is also understandable why people would be upset at the terms of the severance. It is almost as if you were fired for cause because of the agreement that you can never return to HPE again, even as a contractor. To many people, this is an unneccessary burden on something that is already very difficult.
Just wanted to thank for writing this. I'm tired of having to explain why this is so upsetting and why I have every right to feel the way I do and express it. So thank you OP, for understanding and voicing it.