The Latest Blue Water Agent Orange Ruling

Excerpts taken from the VAntage Point Blog – written by J. Slider

This week the Department of Veterans Affairs official blog, VAntage Point, addressed the findings of the recent ruling on the affects of Agent Orange on Blue Water Sailors —those who served on deep water Navy or Coast Guard vessels. In summary, the report stated that the exposure of Viet Nam era Blue Water Navy Veterans to Agent Orange cannot reasonably be determined due to a lack of data on environmental concentrations of Agent Orange contaminants.

Although this means that this group of veterans do not have a presumptive connection to AO, it does not mean that Blue Water Navy Veterans can’t submit claims and apply for benefits if they feel they were exposed to AO. In fact, as the VA blog points out, the VA has recognized claims from Vietnam Veterans whose ships entered inland waterways, and/or docked at specific times and locations, if they claim that they went ashore. So far, this applies to 140 ships and 51 classes of vessels. Veterans who were aboard these ships are eligible for benefits based on the presumption that their diseases are associated with their service in Vietnam. You can find the list of ships and vessels linked on the Blue Water Navy Veterans website.

The VAntage Point blog also points out that non-Hodgkins lymphoma is an exception to the IOM “Blue Water” findings. Blue Water Veterans claiming non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma as a disability may be granted service-connection without showing inland waterway service or that they set foot in Vietnam. This is because VA also recognizes non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma as associated with service in Vietnam or the waters offshore of Vietnam during the Vietnam Era.

Read the full VAntage Point blog article for more details and a timeline of events on the subject.

About the Author

Terry Howell
Before becoming the Managing Editor for, Terry served 20 years in the U.S. Coast Guard as an Aviation Electrician’s Mate and aircrewman. In his final role in the Coast Guard, Terry served as a Career Development Advisor, where he provided career, finance, education, and benefits counseling to servicemembers and their families. Since retiring from the Coast Guard, Terry has authored the book, The Military Advantage, managed the content for TurboTap, the DoD's online transition program and VAforVets, the VA's transition assistance website. Terry earned both his Bachelor's and MBA at Corban University using Military Tuition Assistance and his GI Bill benefits to help cover the cost.
  • bklyn

    more true non-sense from navy people.most never were close enough to even see land.they claim they saw clouds drift out to see,well I saw OR dropped and there were no clouds drifting ,it went straight down it was fairly heavy.

    • Michael

      Sport, I don’t think you know what you are talking about. Don’t just guess as to what YOU think might be the truth, ask some Navy guys that were there.

    • Phil Torres

      What service were you in to make such an idiot riddeen statement. Navy personnel were indeed close enough to see land, case in point, what about the Navy personnel that served on LST ships that pulled up to the shore and dropped the platform for access to shore. The riverin force boats that cruised up and down the rivers. It sounds like you are a community organizer or to be more blunt, a street shit disturber

    • Gary

      I thought we as Veterans were all in this together.. You make it pretty eveident that we as Navy Vets must be less deserving than yourself. It’s not like we don’t face enough opposition from the VA, but now our on. Thanks for the uplifting message. Gary Moreland, VietNam Vet and damn proud of it!!!!!!

    • Navy Retired

      My my, Do you sleep well at night being such an arrogant ass. I don’t know about ‘clouds’ of AO drifting out to see, but while serving on the USS America CVN66 in 1968 I could clearly see land and bombs exploding with my naked eye as we were less then 20 miles from shore. The Australian government has already covered thier Naval personnel who were up to 100 miles from shore. It has now been stated that the conversion of Salt Water to drinking quality of the ships offshore greatly concentrated the amount of AO in the water.

    • Sailor John

      As a USN vet who served aboard the USS Truxtun in the Gulf of Tonkin in 1968, often close to shore, I agree concluding bluewater sailors were exposed is preposterous. There were no clouds of toxins wafting offshore to the blue water navy.

      One would think that the most heavily exposed cohort, USAF members of Operation Ranch Hand who mixed the chemicals and flew the spray planes, would show some increased rate of the diseases “presumptively” linked to AO exposure…but after more than 3 decades of closely-monitored epidemiolgical studys comparing to vets who served in Germany, there is no evidence of increased rates of illness among Ranch Hand vets.

      Bah Humbug!

      • Daniel

        your not sailor john, your STUPID john. Ive seen ships hit by shore batteries, struck by mines, two marines killed right on my ship, I saw the BB New Jersey in Subic with her forward 16″ gun mount blown off. I saw the shore bombardment. I saw the “line”. I saw mountains blown up by Heavy Crusiers. My ship landed South Vietnamese Rangers. And I worked on evaporators in the engine room, making fresh water out of salt water, and I now have non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, you ain’t no sailor…..john…..go ____ yourself

        • butch

          I agree Stupid John fits, but I think you`re mistaken about the New Jersey BB62 being in Subic with the her forward 16“ gun mount mount blown off…this never happened!

          • smoke52

            I saw the Newpot News in Subic with her forward gun mount blown-up. She was on her way to conus for repairs. I believe this was in “72”

    • chipnusnr

      I would like to say this is nothing more than lip service by the V.A… If I gave them a cup of salt water, sprayed a little Agents Blue, White, Orange, Pink, Purple, 14 all total, then ran it through a desalanization unit, they would say hell no I amm not going to drink that water. Case still stands, they owe us. I am a Lymphoma cancer survivor of 5 years thus far. Is my understanding it can come back anytime.

      Johm Jr. USNR

    • Navy Chief

      Well bklyn, you are seriously wrong, stick to what you know, and AO is not one of them. I can tell you for a fact that there were missions that were cancelled for whatever reason and those aircraft dumped AO over open water. I have the documents to back it up. It shows mission and what happened. This happen many times. So don’t even try to talk your BS about what you know not a damn thing about. There was also an issue with this in Guam I believe. I am not a Vietnam Vet, but my father was, so I started investigating. I am a Vet of Desert Storm, Bosnia and a few others. Navy Veteran. Now reading your little bs I am actually wondering if you are even a vet.

      • Joedy

        Dear Navy Chief,
        You are 100% right about the dump sites over the Fleets in the Tonkin Gulf. The PROBLEM IS THE VA has shut the Web sites down, you know need there permission to get the information.
        I had 3 tours as a Flight Deck Direcror on the Kitty Hawk and Connie, went 52 days running Alpha Strikes durning Line Backer. Please Chief tell the people about what we did for our Country.

    • tim

      I agree. If there wasn’t a “check in the mail”, it wouldn’t be an issue. I’m surprised all the indigenous people of Vietnam aren’t all suffering from the effects of agent orange. this issue defies the imagination.

    • Joe Faietta

      Are you outta your mind? Did you ever serve in Nam? I served on the USS Everett F. Larson DD-830. I have photos of us just 1/4 mile off the coast providing gunfire support. If we were not close enough to shore why did they have us walking around the main deck dropping concussion grenades in the water to prevent the VC swimmers from planting magnetic mines on the hull of the ship? You have no idea what your talking about. My ship was hit with AO while we were off the coast. I don’t think AO can determine the color of the water weather brown or blue. That is a bunch of bull S**t. The AO was sprayed ashore was taken off the coat by the wind, sure on a calm day the wind didn’t blow AO was dropped straight down. I know for a fact that we were hit with that s**t because I was on the clean up crew doing a fresh water wash down.

    • JoeB

      More “boots on the ground” crap. Why is it that some veterans of the Vietnam War have in fact hijacked the war for themselves? If you were in the service during WW2, you were in fact a veteran of WW2 without distinction.
      To say that BWN, USAF, and US Army in Thailand were not exposed to herbicides is insane when known facts support their claims. The Australian government commissioned Queensland Univ. to determine AO health issues with their veterans of that era. They determined there are AO effects and promptly awarded the vets their due.
      “bklyn”, you need to be a little more “well read” about a subject you have so very little knowledge about. Get a life and stop picking on vets in need. Read some declassified documents and get educated on the subject matter. You sound like a VA person too lazy to know the facts.

    • smoke52

      You better remember some history, first,the navy was the first to the US military presence which was in 1954. Second, Do you know of the tonkin gulf resolution, USS Turner Joy and the USS Maddox

  • 3 Tours on Carriers

    I contend that sailors who performed maintenance on aircraft that performed close air support missions were directly and continuously exposed to AO brought back by those aircraft to the ships where they were based.

    • Big O

      I think that just walking the Hanger & Flight Decks and working on replenishment parties exposed us.

    • sddale

      Thats a big roger that the residue was so heavy that at times we had to wash the aircraft before it attacked the other areas and started unseen corrision so its more trash that other branches did see “what we saw” cause didnt see what we saw



    • carriervet

      why did we recieve the vietnam service medal and campaign medal if the va
      considers us vietnam era vets

      • biteme ref. to Vietnam is applied to us because our own politicians want to DIVIDE us in order to conquer/control the mistakes that past administrations made, and therefore NOT be held responsible for our care. The quote “boots on the ground” was NEVER used in any other theater..During WWII, if you were a supply Sgt. out of San Francisco, you were still a WWII Vet. Only the Veterans of Vietnam, and only the U.S. Veterans…were treated this way to protect Politicians and large chemical companies from Vast law suits…Just consider all the damage done to all the friendly countries that allowed us establish military bases near to the Vietnam war zone..Subic Bay is considered a Toxic dumping ground, fish can not survive in the waters of Subic Bay, thanks to us…

  • Jane F. Miller

    To All Who Will Listen,

    Veterans and active military could have better and immediate access to mental health treatment if the VA hostipals inpatient and outpatient mental services would employ Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners to the assessment, evaluation and treatment pprocess vets. I am a Family Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, have 15 years of education in both Psych and Primary Care as an NP, 38 years as an RN in the psychiatric and addictions field and 2 masters degrees-( one in nursing, one in psychiatric rehabilitation and 2 post masters- one in adult health NP and one in family psychiatric mental health NP. I will be starting a doctoral program this fall. I was the last Psych NP to work in outpatient mental health services, took much abuse from psychiatrists and psychologist, looked upon as knowing nothing and not able to do much particularly not to evaluate anyone for PTSD , other mental health conditions and most especially to evaluate someone for suicidal ideation. I left there after 4 years and may insults, promises to get me help and with a 540 patient caseload which my boss, who was a social work without any clinical experienc in mental health, did not believe I had. I cried about leaving but I was worn down and tired of no professial respect but loved the veterans. I will gladly go back if things would change.

    A privilege to serve vets,

    Jane F. Miller, RN, MS, ANP-BC, NPP-BC, DNPs

    • w. d.

      As a Nam PTSD vet I wish to say thanks. If you just helped one vet you have done more then all the shrinks that I went to in the VA and was told to live with it.

      • MIc

        Eye Movement Desensitivation Responsivness (EMDR) is a class A trauma therapy used within the VA. If other methods of treatment have been unsuccessful i recommend seeing if there is someone in your VA area who utilizes this treatment. If not i am sure there are private providers who will. google EMDR for more info.

    • CTC

      From experiance, I recommend anyone applying for any VA benefits, use a civilian doctor. VA health care is designed to prevent Veterans from recieving earned benefits. The VA IS STILL “DELAY,DENY, HOPE YOU DIE’

      CTC, combat vet VN 69-70

      • ptsd vet


    • HMC/IDC/DV

      Ms. Miller,
      I am a Physician Assistant and have just completed 27 months of working in a mental health clinic at a regional VA hospital. My supervisor and my supervising physician are psychiatrists. I have never been told I could not evaluate or diagnose PTSD or any psychiatric condition.
      I don’t know where you worked, but it sounds like a personality conflict to me. Maybe you confused or intimidated some people with all those letters after your name.
      Good luck in your doctoral program

    • Richard

      From one Nam Vet. I Say: Thank you. I have seen first hand . And you are right.
      Thank You again, Take care
      Richard Benavides

  • Stacy Benoit

    Great Comment Jane and W.D….. my vietnam veteran (Navy – USS Cacapon, refueling ship) father has PTSD there is no question in my mind although he hasn’t been to the doctor in 20+ years and refuses to go, I think he is scared. If he had someone like you Dr. Miller I’m certain he would go.

    Many say my father was not exposed to AO and quite honestly being an offspring of my father I know he has symptoms of AO. I don’t really care how heavy you think this was, it still carried by winds and so on.. Until you know exactly what you are talking about, you should probably not say anything at all.

    On this Father’s Day I’m proud to say that my Father a NAVY VETERAN of Vietnam served to keep you and me safe and (BKLYN) it doesn’t matter what branch of service you served it’s the fact that you served and were willing to give your life for this great country. It is a disgrace that you degrade the NAVY. Shame on you!

    • Paul

      I was on the U.S.S. Tappahannock AO-43 and we carried Agent Orange in 55 gal.barrels to be transfered to aircraft carriers where it was mixed with water and loaded on to planes for spraying. I remember when one of those barrels was leaking on board my ship and some of our crew had to clean it up. We were exposed to it. I have no doubt. (BKLYN) does not know much.

      • Dennis

        I was exposed to AO in Subic Bay 1967 cleaning leaking AO drums. Can you give any info about your ship?

    • Linda

      My husband served Army in the Vietnam War. When he got sick @10yrs ago I researched any possible effects from when he served. I got him to go to the VA & get checked out. He was really stubborn & didn’t want to go, but it was the death of our daughter that got him to go. I kept saying there might have been something wrong with him that may have been handed down to her. Anyways, my husband gets VA & Social Security benefits. Get your dad to go he will be compensated from the onset of his illnesses. Then he will continue to get a monthly benefit check from the VA.

      • linda

        I forgot to mention that my husband was also exposed to Agent Orange. He had a very good social worker from the VA that listened to him & helped him with the benefits to include the exposure to AO. It was in the air & in ground while he served in Vietnam.

        • linda

          Oh, my husband suffered kidney failure & is currently on dialysis.

    • GGe


      My father was also on the USS Cacapon for part of 65 and 67 and all of 66. My dad also has talked about carrying Agent Orange.

      Ironically, both myself and brother developed DVT in our legs when we were in our late teens. An MD/Phd researcher linked my father’s exposure to Agent Orange as the cause. His genes were mutated, and he passed that along to us.

      I have read where the BWN actually may have been exposed to more concentrated amounts of AO due to gathering drinking water from the sea and filtering it for potable water.

    • Raymond Williams

      I was on the USS Cacapon AO-52 from 1964 to 1967 I was a machinist mate,
      I made two Cruises over there 65 and 66. In 66 we got sprayed with AO when
      went up Mangrove Swamps which was part of Mekong River, which was brown.water. I’ve gotten ten percent from hearing loss, If you want to talk me.
      here my phone 423-591-2697 I live in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

      Raymond Williams

    • Ray Williams

      I was the USS Cacapon Ao-52 during the Vietnam War in 1965 and 1966.
      The Ship went up brown water Mekong River Delta near Siagon , April 13, 1966 got spayed with AO real bad.

      • G. Andersson Nordin
      • G. Andersson Nordin
    • Ray Williams

      When we went the Mangrove Swamp near Siagon in April 13, 1966
      we got sprayed with Agent Orange real bad. I machinist Mate on the USS Cacapon that time. I’m fighting VA over a lot of things that I suffer from.
      which they haven’t settle.

    • Marty Paulson

      I too served on Cac inVietnam. I have PTSD benefits. I also have cancer from AO. It is in my medical records that I was exposed to AO. The doctor has read them to me twice. I can’t get ahold of them as of this date. The VA is very slow when you want something. Tell your father he deserves the benefits and to start the process, although long. I have some documents that can help.

  • Ron Pogatchnik

    I was diagnosed with Prostate Cancer at 34 years old. One on the youngest .

    I was aboard the carrier hornet for 1 year. AO is known to cause that cancer.

    I submitted for benefits. 1st time they lost all my records and the 2nd time they refused.

    when you see the way they are treating are returning injured vets it is no surprise. The few of us who have done our duty are not respected.

    • Service Officer

      While I am NOT making excuses for the VA. I strongly encourage anyone with “difficult” or “not so clear” claims to get a Strong , dedicated Service Officer to advocate for you. I have helped several Vietnam vets this year alone start receiving compensation bennies.

    • biteme

      include me too Ron…Prostate and bladder…how nice, 5 operations and for now I’m stable….However, all I receive from VA is delays…I can appreciate the fact that they are overwelmed…but hey, there are lots of people that need jobs….HIRE some…..

  • Ken

    I currently have an appeal in with the BVA for my cancer that I used numerous scenarios how the BWN could have been exposed with simplicity. As a post here has suggested that wash downs occurred for unknown reasons, I too used the scenarios of the wash downs as a possible source of contamination, and the residues of these washdowns in ports such as Subic, Singaphore, Japan and others, and with over 700 ships serving in that conflict, doesn’t anybody wonder where the contaminants may have ended up after these wash downs?
    I have yet received the decision of my appeal, beings it only occurred in March, however, reasonable doubt is all that is needed, and with the release of the IOM report, this certainly has created the “REASONABLE DOUBT” ruling more so.

    • Rene Hernandez

      My husband just wont his case with the VA. VA keep turning him down and we decided to fight and hire a lawyer. If you need my help, you can call me
      my name is RENE and I was stationed in the Philippines, Subic Bay, I was
      a Marine stationed 70-71. We have all the doc. if you need it.

      my number is 904-236-6866 – I also have Diabetes II, Heart, Kidney problem.

      • Ken

        Thank you Rene, this is my last leg of the appeals process which is in DC right now just awaiting the ruling. However, may I recommend that you visit the website, and announce the results of the decision and give the case number for those who wish to research the decision who may benefit from the evidence.

        I used many scenarios to how we could have been exposed, because direct exposure is impossible to prove without direct spray or contact. I am sure with this recent report from the IOM, it will open many Reasonable Doubt issues that will give more BWN personnel the opportunity to win their case and eventually have the “Boots on Ground” ruling set aside. I am very involved with the website, so come on over and join us, your information is very important.

      • mike

        Sorry to hear that !! I was stationed in the Philippine Islands too… San Miguel/Subic Bay… 1969-70… Have had five Cancer related operations so far….filed with VA per my civilian doctor because of amphibous ship I was on with about 1500 Marines…Never considered Subic Bay, however, from what I’m finding out Subic Bay is one nasty toxic dump !…and too was Clark A.F.B. It would be nice if the citizens of this country would confront our Politicians in support of the Vietnam Veterans….WE are so happy to provide monies and lives to other country’s needs…but we are so ignorant to the issues our own Veterans face….

      • biteme

        My name is Mike, I have spoken to Mr. Hernandez….He has been very helpful, you can count on him to guide you in the correct direction, and again I Thank Him for all his help….

        • Dennis

          Mike can you help with any info?

      • Dennis

        I was in Subic Bay Feb., 1967 on a work detail cleaning leaking AO drums while on TDY awaiting Kitty Hawk. Any info you can provide would be helpful.

      • Paul Woodburn

        Hi Rene
        My name is paul woodburn. I was in subic on different ship’s from June 71 to June 72. I was attached to conserveron9. It was a commodore’s staff. We changed ship’s approx. every 2 month’s. I’m having trouble proving boots on the ground in Vietnam because VA says they want a 60 day window. Impossible for me to remember what ship I was on and connect it to a 60 day window where I can remember where we went. Maybe with your info on subic bay I can get approved.

    • Ray H. Long Jr.

      What about all the aircraft that returned to carriers after missions. You know they were covered with AO that the crew’s were breathing in from takeoffs and landings.

  • Ed Kidwell

    Hi, I also was aboard a destroyer in ‘nam in 1966. We were within 300 yards from shore from time to time and went into Danang harbor( which we didn’t land as a result of some shelling).The water tasted so bad that we were distilling that they mixed Kool Aid “bug juice” into it to make it somewhat palletable.
    I was turned down twice for AO exposure,but I am going to re-apply again in the FUTILE hope that America MIGHT want to do the right thing toward we who served in an unpopular war because they NEEDED us. Kharma might just work for COUNTRIES too.

    • mike

      Futile…hang in there…I would appreciate our government and our civilians treating us the same way Canada treats the Canadian Veterans…Ironic though…in 1960’s our young men ran to Canada to dodge the draft…now a lot of them (draft dogers) are the ones in charge of our making our laws…and denying our Veterans the benefits they deserve…But its Canada who supports its Veterans and provides them with the benefits that they NEED… GOOD FOR CANADA…….

    • patrickvilla48

      I was on a guided missile cruiser in nam in 1968 and 1969 and we sat in da nang harbor and provided heavy gun fire support. close enough to shore line in blue waters, also up and down hoi an , cam rhan bay, and was instrumental in taking down the wall in hue. since then i have recently developed acute refractory asthma and it is only getting worse with five hospitalizations in less than one year. was recently told to file for a claim. i fear there was exposure to AO for us during that time. i have come down with some of the after affects i feel.

      • Chunk
  • Pat Neal

    Twice in Vietnam, second time in brown water 3 times in the harbors. We operated with I Corps within a mile off shore for 3 to 4 months. We had to washdown the ship at least twice for reasons not disclosed.

    Was advised by VA doctors to file to be put on the AO list. Each time the VA said “No boots ashore, NO AO benefits”.

    All of my disability moneys comes out of my Navy pension, so I don’t understand why the VA is so set against recognizing my AO exposure claim.

    Since there are no records indicating exactly where our ship was at given times, (classified operations), it is the sailors burden of proof for AO exposure. Can’t be done!

    Anyway, trying to deal with the VA about this is very combative.

    • Mike Clark

      Your ships deck logs are in the nat’l archives and if you know the dates your location will be disclosed. I hired a guy to track mine down, Tim Frank (, and he did a good job. He emailed me scanned digital images of the log sheets I needed and that was all I needed. You may still be able to get your disability claim with the VA. They’ve made it easier. My claim was denied but I appealed and with the log sheets got the decision changed.

      • Michael

        A true event regarding ship’s deck logs. My second cruies to the Tonkin Gulf, I was in Electronic Warefare. One morning our primary receiving antennae went down and the EW tech and myself had to go up on the mast to make repairs. But before going aloft, we had to go to every electronic shop and have them sign off on a men aloft chit and place their radar in stand by. After that we went to the bridge to have the officer of the deck sign the chit and enter the men aloft into the ship’s log. Then the radar watch was passed to the plane watch destroyer two thousand yards astern. Only then could we assend the mast. I’m not sure just how long we had been up there but two F-4 Phantoms came in for a landing. The only way they could land was to have the radars turned back on. When the first F-4 landed, we knew exactly what had happened and started buttoning up the antenna. I have no idea how long the E-6 and myself were exposed to the radiating emissions of how many radars. But if anyone has ever heard of the first microwave oven, the Amana RadarRange, then you will now know how it got it’s name. But the ship’s deck log, I had reason to request a complete copy to find when we were up the mast. The entry that had to be there, ISN’T!!! It was criminal to turn the radars back on while we were aloft. We could have very easily been cooked from the inside out just like a microwave cooks. The first thing to go is the reproductive system and/or eyes. I’m 65 and I’ve never had children either on purpose or by accident. The retina in my left eye has fallen twice. The retinologist said after the second emergency surgery, did I know how so much scar tissue got behind my retina. When I told him what I thought, he didn’t believe me. But just like morning reports, they were written to cover somebody’s butt to protect their career. Am I happy? NO WAY!!!

    • Ken Mayes

      Know where you are coming from.. I’m inb the same boat. Went ashore from the USS Intrepid CVS-11 to repair a teletype machine, when I got back my CO told me that this never happened and that I was to forget that it ever did. No records of it on ships logs. So got denied for AO. Only one in family with IHD, lung problems( 4 inhalers and a nebulizer every day). Sleep aphnea, fibromyalgia, and blood pressure problems all the time ( In hospital or emergency room 9 times since Thanksgiving) Still trying to find someone who might remember me. .

    • bite me

      Its Ironic..Dodge the Vietnam war, hide in Canada..Return to the United States, attend college..snowball those around you, Run for and hold a Political they can pass all these laws to delay and deny the benefits owed to these HONORABLE VETERANS……sick politicians…

  • salty’s wife

    I don’t know who think you are bklyn, but it looks like you have not read up on what you’re commenting on. My husband was a BWN. The ship deck log states they were 386 feet from shore(a football field away). He went crawling through the jungle, but they say it’s not in the log. He is and has been very sick with agent orange related dieases. Please do some research before you make comments. Another thing to study on sea is the body of water not see.

    • Dan az

      What people forget is the water is caring the agent out to sea at a much more concentrated level.I worked in the quang tri area up the rivers and found that it was far worse in the water from the run off of the rains.I two have had heart problems and type two diabetes and they refuse to admit that the coast guard was even there.The spray along the coast that covers you from head to toe while in the gulf and at sea is agent orange that floats on the surface of the me you never forget that smell.

    • jerry grogg

      there is help for agent orange cases through the mcdonagh med .com it is alternitive medicine and the army and insurane companies do not recognise the treatment but it works. it is called chelation and hyperbaric oxigen treatment. they are located in gladstone, mo with a kansas city phone. and believe me it works. pull it up on your computer as they have cured over 60 soldiers so far.

  • I was on a DE on the Gun Line in ’72. We routinely steamed through sand, grit and debris clouds from B 52 raids. If even one of those raids was on a location that had been treated with AO, we were all exposed. Now, I have Type II diabetes, but the VA won’t even consider having me tested for exposure because there were no “Boots on the Ground.” How long will it be, I wonder, before the court ruling that this is vague, ambiguous and not in accordance with the direct wishes of Congress go into effect and all of us Blue Water sailors become eligible to be tested for AO. I’m not asking that it be presumed that we were exposed, just that the VA is told to test us and find out for sure.

    • Maloukis

      I was a signalman on the aor-4. We cruised back and forth off shore to re-fuel the gun ships every time they would use .25 % of their fuel. I watch AO being sprayed through the big eyes on the signalbridge and felt the precussion from the b-52’s bomb raids. Can someone tell me for sure ,,,does AO disapate instantly after application??? Other wise I breathed it daily. I have diabetes 2, , had double heart by-pass at 41 and take 11 different meds for HBP,H-cholesterol, ETC. Been turned down for all dissabilities ratings 4 times,one time they told me they had no proof I was ever in Nam. Va has sent me through PTSD classes, treated for hearing loss from gun ships,anxiety, well you get it. I treat my dogs better.,,,OUT.

      • SM2 Palmer

        I was a signalman too, on the USS Tripoli, a help carrier. Landed marines and recovered aircraft night and day. Within sight of Nam. Bombings and aircraft being shot at by SAMs. Being up on the signal bridge, exposed to jet and rotor wash, helos often brought back mud witch dried on the flight deck, dried and was blown up on the bridge. I have type II diabetes and a heart problem. The V A has turned me down twice. Life doesn’t seem so important when your country is sweeping you under the rug.

    • Ken Mayes

      Joe: It’s hard to prove Boots on Ground when they didn’t keep very good records back then. Everything was so routine that they quit putting things in. Contact your local U.S. Rep. Ask them to support House Bill #812 for Agent Orange Equality Act. If everyone did this us Blue water vets may get the benefits. Ken

    • JoeS

      There is no medical “Test” for AO exposure. Doctors can ONLY test for diseases related to exposure to AO.

  • Gary

    If the Navy had to wash down ships and choppers off the coast of Japan from the power plant radiation then how come they cant see that the same thing happened to us off the coast of Nam. Same prevailing wind direction same problem. Those sailors are checked for radiation poisoning but we cant get AO poisoning? I was 38 and had a heart attack with no history in my family at all. Within the next 5 years I had 3 more and was diagnosed with severe congestive heart failure. Now I have had a double bypass and a built in defibrillator, go figure.

    • mike

      Agree Gary ! ..I have had five cancer related operations, told by doctors to file with the VA…. The Respected doctor that I saw submitted a letter to the VA, so far to NO avail…..Our Politicians refuse to consider ALL Veterans equally, BUT what really hurts is that the citizens of this country refuse to support its own Veterans…they either don’t have the time, or they don’t care…

    • Jim

      I am a BWN once in 69, and again in 70. Had angioplasty at age 33, diabetes in mid 20’s. Triple bypass at 37, since then have h4ad 22 heart surgeries, no others in family had these problems for 3 generations back, on both sides of famiy. Have 8 stints and 4 eye surgeries for diabetes problems. Most times have severe foot and hands pain due to diabetes. Must take13 different pills daily. We had 55 gallon drums drop and explode on deck, while transfering AO, AB et al, while in gulf of tonkin. We even had 4 55 gallon drums of AO drop in gulf of tonkin. Opponets should check ratio of BWN to regular civilians and see how many sailors vs civiliams have these problems. Not all boots on the ground guys got sick .nor did all BWN get sick. Carrier guys had to really come in contact with AO, as they loaded the planes. They are being denied. Like the BWN says, they just want us to go away and die. Then we’ll be out of their hair.

  • I am always amazed at how many people think that because they were close to Viet Nam any illness they have should be covered by the VA. Unless you were in actual combat in fire fight you had it made . You should have come up to Khe Sanh during the Tet Offensive of 1968. 70 plus days of being under fire. C rations for over 2 months, 1200 incoming mort., artillery, rockets. Seeing your friends blown up and loosing a limb..quit complaining.

    • Walter Abbey

      Jon. It does not make dying from cancer or diabetes any easier just because they never were a grunt. You might want go to one of these folks funeral and make your statements there, I am sure all would agree with you! AO exposure has been proven to cause cancer, heart problems and diabetes. You will be just as sick and just as dead as any grunt who served incountry. Have a littleconsideration for those who served where they were ordered. Don’t be an elitist.

      • Ken

        Dittoes Walter…the AO Act 91 had us all covered, but something it appears here is that maybe some have a misunderstanding by those who have no idea, that INGESTION from contaminated water for a very long term, and may I suggest 6 to 18 months minimum, is probably a very good source of direct exposure and illnessnes. I have spoken with many ground troops that have been sprayed also that have no illnesses, because many of them were able to wash alot of it off.

    • Howard

      Welcome Home John,

      I too slugged it out in the crap, 67 – 68, 1st Field Forces, Tet, Artillery and know first hand what AO looks, smells and taste like. AO VA claims from a Carrier at sea because they drank the water, give me a break!

      • Ken

        John and Howard, I would like to take this time and thank you for your service and sacrifices, you had the hell of it all and we understand that, but please accept the reality that our Navy may have not saved your ass in a pinned downed situation, but maybe some of your other comrades. Please respect the actions of our Naval forces that were part of the “BIG” picture of operations to do the job neccessary, and I believe that an appology is in order to the ones you have offened with your remarks about how you think the Navy was not an important factor in that conflict. I am not sure if you realise how many casualties came out of the Navy aboard ships in NGFS, and the Brown water navy that joined the ranks up rivers with their actions. I make this remark because of a gesture from a ground pounder that took the time to thank me for my service in that conflict, which at the time I never realized how important we truly where in that battle., but when he explained to me that my ship may have sent in fire support for him and his men, I saw a different view of Vietnam and my service.

      • smoke52

        You forget who bail you out during some fire fights. Wake-up

    • tim

      A good friend of mine just lost a leg to cancer. the suspect, Agent Orange. He served in the bush during 1969. The VA hospital is providing care. I am saddened by the onslaugt of Vets who were so far removed from the battlefield, claiming injury. Too bad the VA is seen as an enemy. Take away the money, no complaints. If this goes, then I suspect a Vet stationed in Maine during the war years could have some exposure by r contact with other Vet “carriers”. LUDICRIS!

    • Jim

      I joined just like you did Jon, I went were they sent me, on the days we got our orders, a line was drawn, all those below that line were given 30days leave, because they were all going to go on PBR’s. My name was the next name. I didn’t have to go on the PBR’s. I went where they told me to go, when they told me to go and how they told me to go. AO is not a bullet or any kind of shell. It is a poison, which is passed by many ways to people thru no fault of their own. The BWN got this poinson by eating, drinking, bathing this poison daily. I am sick and dieing, Maybe I don’t deserve as much as you do. No one will argue that Khe Sanh, wasn’t a nightmare for the soldiers there. We are sck in another way , but still sick. How did sailors get sick in their late 20’s and early 30’s with all of them being sick of the same thing. It’s like cancer clusters, they all have the same thing in common. Where they served ! Those of us that didn’t experience what you did will never understand what it is like to in that situation. But we are sick, just the same.

    • Kenneth Morrow

      Yeh! You should have been at sea in turbelent waters when you were 18- 19 and didn’t think if the ship would hold up. These were not princess cruises to the bahamas, these were war ships and a many times we were called a reference point so we could bombard the enemy so some american soldiers could escape. The best way for the soldiers to travel was by beaches when the navy was anywhere around. We dranked sea water that had travel through revaperators. That water tasted terrible and was probably full of agent orange. Anything dropped from as high as those plains were drifted out to sea.

    • Kenneth Morrow

      Hey Jon! Look up this ship Everett F. Larson dd830 and look at the accident scene at sea. We as navy people were subjected to a lot of dangers, mainly collision. Take a look at some navy scenes because i heve seen a lot of jugle scenes. There were times i was afraid as there were times when you were afraid. it doesn’t matter what frighten you.

    • Nelson Lee

      Just because everyone wasn’t exposed to the things you were exposed to doesn’t mean they don’t have compensible illnesses as well as you do!!!!

    • Conrad

      Jon, I was in the Air Force Security Police stationed during Tet 67-68 at Dong Ha a Marine Base you werent the only one eating shit and drinking the AO water , there were (Blue Water Navy) that got the water from the rivers and the shit that was dumped over board you know it happens!!! There were Airmen at Khe Sanh too that helped as back up air traffic controller. We guarded a radar station at Dong Ha and went out on patrols with the grunts. we saw a lot of 122 rockets and probes you were not the only one and who protected yu ass more than anyone the US Air Force. Read up on how the Blue Water Navy got sick and why, they drank the water,showered in it and cooked in it, there is a thing called currents in the ocean and it moves what ever anywere so lighten up!!! By the way my son just retired from the Marines 3 tours in Iraq and one in Somila 1st Marines 3rd LAR and my grandson just got back from Afgantisan .(Marine) give the Navy a break take care

    • Michael Heff

      Jon, I assume you were a Marine as you talk about being at Khe Sanh. I understand your feeling that many Navy people were simply near Vietnam and are using this as an excuse to cover themselves for illnesses that have nothing to do with Vietnam, but simply old age. But that is only because you, as with the rest of the world, are ignorant of what the Navy did because we did not have reporters on board or combat photographers as the major battles and bases did.

      FCC Michael J Heffernan

    • Michael Heff

      I am no hero, but I hold the Combat Action Ribbon and The Gallantry Cross. You don’t get those ribbons for merely being in the area.While attacking a “North” Vietnam Boat repair yard to prevent them from repairing barges used to carry supplies to the VC and NVA which would be used against you. As we approached to less than 1000 yards from the beach, 5 Radar guided russian guns opened up on us firing 101 rounds at us (not quite as impressive as 1200 rounds you received in your 70 day battle) in less than 8 minutes. We know there were 101 rounds as we had 100 splashes on the sonar tape. One round managed to miss the water (guess where it went)?

      We were at Hue during the Tet Offensive taking small arms fire from the beach. Now if you have the same picture of most of the Navy, and you picture us as sitting in a battleship totally protected by armor from the enemy. The ships Hull was made of steel. But the supperstructure was aluminum and far from Bullet-proof. Especially when your job was out in the open.

      FCC Michael Heffernan

    • Michael Heff

      And last but not least, the Australians VA found their sailors were dying faster then their ground troops. At the end of their study they found the Aussie ships (and u.s. ships) concentrated the agent orange 4 fold into the ships potable water supply (used to drink, cook and shower as well as run the boilers). The American VA hired the Institute of Medicine to check the aussie’s test and their results stated the Aussies made errors. The actual tests they did showed the agent orange was concentrated 10 fold through the distillation process. We had men killed too. I will not dispute how bad you had it. But please do not berate the service of others who risked themselves to cover your ass or those asses of your fellow Marines and the Army. I will also assume you were unaware of the Flat black paint jobs on the Coast Guard cutters that were almost always in combat and under fire.__FCC Michael J. Heffernan

    • Richard Bettencourt

      I was on the uss Fletcher back in 1965 and 1967 for gun fire subport and was a menber of the ship landing party.on board the Fletcher we did get conbat paid so quest making bad jnfor . we were one back then,

    • Ron Frosheiser

      Hi Jon,

      Thanks for your service. I served on board USS Coral Sea during Khe Sanh and Tet offensive. Did you notice our A1’s (VA-25) giving you ground support on numerous occasions with napalm and ground fire? Although I did not experience the things you did we were all a team over there and as a team we should support one another. If we sailors are getting the same diseases on the presumptive list then we should also be given the benefits we deserve.

    • Dick

      you should have been depth charged, don’t be so quick to judge when you dont know what others went thru. You need to listen more, and talk less.

    • Frank

      Ok Marine we know you won the war. When you were taking all the shelling and troups were about to over run the base the Navy and Air Force saved your butt. We worked around the clock day and night in bad weather rearming the carriers to send planes to run off and kill the VC.Dont think everone had it made. I saw alot of people get injured after working days without sleep and little food. You had it bad no doubt but we served where they sent us. We picked up down aircraft pilots in the gulf , took shore fire and lost men to. Mabe you should look up the Viet Nam history.

    • Chris G

      You must be a marine, that is marine mentality. I did 4 tours in the Tonkin Gulf. Between drinking desalinated water, breathing the air, eating the food that was prepared with the same water, and working on the jets that flew through contaminated air space, you think we are complaing when we have come down with tumors, and our kids have heart problems or spinal scoliosis. Get a life.

    • Jason Gorton

      My Dad was in the Marines and near the DMZ.He said that they use to spray down the Ships with Agent Orange before they went back to the United States.I suffer from Myopathy, Bi Polar, Nurgenic Bladder, Hypertension and had learning disabilities that caused many problems for me to comprehend what i was being taught.Coinsidence or not?I’m starting the process to see if Agent Orange was the cause of my many illnesses and or if i qualify for benefits but I believe the Government will deny me like they do so many of us.They are criminals that kill their own people and those of other Nations in defense of their freedom but what about ours?They want control of everything and believe only in their financial securtiy.

    • Dale Burgener

      I never have complained once about where I served nor when I served. I want you to know that your service in Vietnam was not lost on those in the Navy serving off the coast. We all chose what our destiny was then. I don’t know if you were drafted or volunteered, but you made that choice. I will never try to get benefits I feel I don’t deserve. Thank You
      Dale Burgener

    • Don

      You deserve a lot of respect, Jon, for what you went thru and all the crap you got. I admire you, but I don’t think that gives the country the right to poison me or ignore my complaints.



  • E.A. King

    I was on a Destroyer doing gun support for Marines, we also did SAR Duty. The Austrailian Navy Study done decades ago, proved, ships who sailed along the coast reported higher consintrations of Agent Orange, than troops on the ground. The evaporators sucked in contaminated sea water to make fresh water, the process made the water unsafe, but no one knew it at the time. Both my Civilian and VA doctors agree, I am dying from exposure to Agent Orange. But, because of the present rules, I have no Service Connected Disabilty. I can’t speak for those on Flat Tops, I can only speak for those of us who could see land from the main deck of a Destroyer, we are dying and our fellow Veterans say we don’t deserve any help. I would like to think I would react differently if things were reversed. God Bless

    • L.Edwards

      I agree with you on all points.I served aboard the USS BARNEY DDG-6 and pulled the same duties of fire support,plane guard,and interdiction fire in the river mouths north and south of DMZ. We anchored in DaNang harbor,but our ship was deleted from the records. I believ it is time we were awarded our benefits for the service we gave the troops that were ashore.

  • s robinson

    I served on the Bassac River in Vietnam 70-71. Although I was on the River’s the VA claims the ship I was on, USS Hunterdon County LST-838 (a Gamewarden Ship) was not on the list of watercraft covered. Instead of drinking water from the river, I should have been drinking Aquavelva or Mennen Skin Bracer

    • Bill

      As of the latest list of presumed contaminated ships, ALL LSTs are included so file a NOD if you have a claim that was turned down. If not, file a claim.

    • Ken

      S Robinson, all LST and LSD fall under a blanket ruling. Just because your ship isn’t listed has no bearing on it at all, so tell em to get it right.

    • mike dobson

      i to served on the lst 838 , servicing the pbr made plenty of trips to the tri base at the rivers edge and the small village near by, a letter some pics taken of me with boots on ground got me my ao benies, helps with the meds and small pension let me know your email and ill send you what i sent them if it will help you, att mike dobson lots of luck fellow vet

    • Stewart

      Ships operating primarily or exclusively on Vietnam’s inland waterways
      All vessels referred to in military records as part of the “Mobile Riverine Force”
      All vessels with the designation LCM [Landing Craft, Mechanized]
      All vessels with the designation LCU [Landing Craft, Utility]
      All vessels with the designation LCVP [Landing Craft, Vehicle, Personnel]
      All vessels with the designation LST [Landing Ship, Tank]

  • John B.

    I was on a carrier for 2 deployments to the tonkin gulf and we were close
    enough to watch carpet bombing and bombing raids at night. I now have
    a majority of health effects related to ao and the va won’t even give me
    tests to confirm or not whether or not it is ao related. I was flown off of the
    carrier to return briefly to the conus for emergency leave and had to land in
    Danang for a large part of the day the day after a large rocket attact which
    destroyed the main chow hall and nearby buildings killing a large amount
    of personel. Later that day we had to fly out to saigon where we had to stay
    over night til the next day. Boots on the ground says 24 hours in country and
    because I would qualify under that stipulation but guess what…..I have no
    way to prove or show that chain of events or even that I ever was in country!
    You think I’m not disappointed. Maybe someday when I’m gone the guys
    will get what they should. Maybe.

  • Max Weiss

    As usual, the VA is misrepresenting what the IOM actually reported. Contrast the VA language:

    “In sum­mary, the report stated that the expo­sure of Viet Nam era Blue Water Navy Vet­er­ans to Agent Orange can­not rea­son­ably be deter­mined due to a lack of data on envi­ron­men­tal con­cen­tra­tions of Agent Orange con­t­a­m­i­nants.”

    with the IOM language:

    “Although the IOM found several plausible ways by which Blue Water Navy veterans could have been exposed to herbicides, there was not enough information for the IOM to determine whether Blue Water Navy personnel were or were not exposed to Agent Orange.”

    This difference may appear insignificant to some. However, the IOM language empowers the “benefit of the doubt” rule. Whereas the VA interpretation attempts to preclude the rule.

    This is fiduciary science, not true science.

    The VA is attempting to minimize the impact by shifting the responsibility to the claimant and the court. A denial of a presumptive disease claim will never survive appeal to the court.

    • saigon68

      “This is fiduciary science, not true science. ”

      fiduciary science. did you make that up?

  • Jerome Carter

    I would like too ask the men on this site a very important questiio. I’m a former Vietnam Era veteranbut I never served in country, but I was stationed at Clark A.B. jn the Phillipines. As part of the 6922 Security Group and on ocassionI was part of a group that had a duty of going out on the flight line and unloaded body bags coming in from Vietnam. Now some of those persons that were killed were exposed too the Agent Orange spraying and i’m interested in finding out if that could’ve exposed me to the virus?
    Another thing is that we also would fly into Saigon on ocassion to also load body bags onto C-130’s to fly back too Clark A.B. but we were not ever stationed in Vietnam. Even though we were’nt stationed there we had to land in Saigon and get off those aircraft to take the bodies from the trucks and load them onto the aircraft. Would that be a reason to apply for a claim?

    • Ken

      Jerome, you have “Boots on the Ground”. If you have any of the presumed diseases, you can not be denied. There has to be something in your service records that shows what you where doing.

    • GLSmith

      That is boots on ground

    • Bill ADCS USN Ret

      Jerome…like the others said, you had “boots on the ground” if you flew into Saigon. Not sure if you have what you need to prove it though. Do you have any photos of the aircraft that you were on or photos taken in Saigon? Bureau numbers of the aircraft? Did you keep a log of your flights into Saigon? I have seen the VA accept photos taken “in country” that were accompanied with “sworn statements” that they were taken there. My buddy kept a notebook in his own handwriting of his flights to RVN from a carrier on Yankee Station and that was accepted as proof. I would submit a claim and then start trying to gather any info to support it. Also, do an on-line search for any old buddies or pilots that knew you flew into Saigon. Ask them if they can provide statements that they knew you flew in to RVN. Might take some work but it can be done. I know, because I have done it. Get the claim in first, before you start gathering info as the award is retroactive to the day you submit it.

  • JBW

    The IPOM report also said that there was no more or less evidence to support BWN exposure than land based or brown water exposure. They further vlaidated the Australian study that showed a co-distillation and enrichment process of the dioxin by a factor of 10. Pls contact Congressman and Senators and ask for their support. CDR J B Wells USN (Ret) Dir Legal and Legis Affairs BWNVVA.

  • Jerry Wallace

    I served aboard the USS Providence CLG 6 for most of 1972 and part of 73 we operated off the coast as our mission was gun fire support. We made a couple of multi cruise attacks on Hiaphong Harbour along with the Oklahoma City and the New Port News. We were fired upon several times. We got our perishable foods from the bases with in the country along with mail and other items. It is apparent that the VA ad congress want to forget us the Viet Nam era veterans. I am going to continue the appeal process.

    • Dennis Olson BM SN

      I was on the USS Cacapon AO-52 And we were on the line from 1972-1973
      I have ischemic heart diseas,skin cancer,and throught cancer. I have had many Heartatacks,and Radiation treatments for my cancer. The VA still wont say its from AO. We refuled the New Port News The day before the gun mount blue up and killed all the crew on the mount. Do you recall that?

    • walt

      In searching for info on my ship in 1972, I came across an operations report for the Providence that stated that on 8/3/72 you operated at the MOUTH of the Cua Viet River….that should qualify as brown water

  • Duane Fortier

    Been trying for a very long long long time to even get ‘tested’ for AO…My DD214 does not say SPECIFICALLY that I was actually IN VietNam…Hence, I am ‘unauthorized to get ‘tested’….My DD214 merely states ‘Foreign-Service.’ This is from Feb. 1966.

    Have had a ‘correction-request’ change in for @ least 6 mnths…Was hoping to get it done B4 I turned 70 y/o next year…

    • Ken

      Duane, this is the second time I have heard a vet say they couldn’t get an AO exam. Go to the VA hospital, or get a VSO to get you in for one. The test is nothing but a phycical and blood work, it proves nothing, however, you will be added on the AO Registry with the results for statistics of where and when you served whether it was in country or not. The doctor will ask all the questions for you to answer so he can file it with the VA.

    • Stan Evetts

      I was on the Dehaven DD214 in 1966-1967 in the Vietnam blue water and brown water. Your DD-214 should have under awards or medals the Vietnam Service award among others, also deck logs will tell where the ship was and how long and how deep the water was, and so forth

      • daytona7

        Was stationed on Oki with the 12th Marines in 64-66 in time for the Tonkin Gulf BS. Boarded an unknown ship and the task force sailed off the coast of Nam for a week or two, close enough to see the flares going off at night and the green trees during the day. When we got back to Oki, we were told that we rated the AFE. Had Prostate Cancer 10 years ago, only one on either side of my family. DD-214 only shows AFE and NDS medals for Cuban Crisis and 1 year, 2 months 9 days foreign or sea service. Only other thing I saw years back on some other records was my embarkation onboard a ship to SE Asia but No Return.
        Anyone here that was on that task force that can provide additional info??

  • Vietvet49

    Try this link for info regarding Agent Orange on Okinawa. The Board of Veterans Appeals ruled in a 1998 case in favor of a veteran who claimed he was exposed to AO while stationed there.

  • eww

    Interesting new item this week: Vietnam’s Red Cross estimates up to 3 million Vietnamese have suffered health-related problems from Agent Orange exposure. The U.S. has said the actual number is far lower and that other health and environmental factors are likely to blame for many illnesses and disabilities.

  • mickey

    not one ammunition ship is on this list,i was aboard the great sitkin ae17 from 65-67 and til this day i have always wondered if we carried agent orange.

    • Lee King

      Mickey, My Name is Lee King I was an MM2 on the Great Sitkin doing that
      Vietnam deployment, we anchoraged in Cam Ranh Bay with in swimming
      distant on 21 July 1968 from about 1100 until 1700, a barge came alone side
      and took on something, I am about to file a claim on next Monday Sept 19th and get the Great Sitkin on that list.

  • John Paul Rossie

    For the pure edification of the public, as well as VA Administrative personnel, I would like to set this record straight.

    The VA has stated that “the exposure of Viet Nam era Blue Water Navy Veterans to Agent Orange cannot reasonably be determined due to a lack of data on environmental concentrations of Agent Orange contaminants.” The report also said this data was lacking for every individual who set foot on mainland Vietnam. There is absolutely no difference in the lack of data for Blue Water Navy personnel as the lack of data for Army, Air Force and Marine personnel, regardless of where in the entire region of Southeast Asia they might have been and regardless of what they were doing.

    This “lack of data” for Agent Orange exposure is what lies behind the Congressional decision to accept a “presumption of exposure.” No one could provide the data, and so the Agent Orange Act of 1991 allowed all military personnel in Southeast Asia to “presume” they were exposed to herbicides. Every ruling for service-connection due to exposure to Agent Orange, every payment of compensation ever made, every health care service ever provided for any disease the DVA has associated with Agent Orange, has been based on a “presumption of exposure” because in 1991 there was a “lack of data” for ALL military personnel who served in Southeast Asia.

    This IOM Report clearly puts every individual who served in Vietnam in the same boat. Not one single individual has ever been able to provide data for their exposure to Agent Orange unless their claim for service connection was granted for direct exposure that was documented so that the quantity of Agent Orange involved could reasonably be estimated.

    Every in-country veteran who is or had ever been granted “service connection for the presumption of exposure to herbicide” is standing on the same totally uncertain footing as are the Blue Water Navy personnel. There is absolutely no difference.

    The inclusion of inland water service is not a special gratuity handed out by the DVA. It is a provision clearly written in the Agent Orange Act of 1991. DVA has been helping identify those ships. But their basic grant of service connection for the “presumption of exposure to herbicide” is written in Public Law 102-4.

    The inclusion of any Navy, Coast Guard or Fleet Marine who can “claim they went ashore” is not being given any special gratuity handed them by the DVA. Having “gone ashore” puts them in the same category of veteran who is labeled “boots on ground.” They totally “lack the data on the environmental concentrations of Agent Orange contaminants,” just like every other individual granted “presumption of exposure to herbicides in Vietnam” for “boots on ground” and is receiving Health Care and compensation benefits.

    Given the high statistical rate of cancer suffered by offshore personnel &lt ;> and the extremely high probability and strongly reasonable plausibility that Agent Orange was in the harbor waters and off the shores of Vietnam &lt ;>, there is no rational justification to consider the probability of Blue Water Navy exposure to Agent Orange to be any less likely than any other group of veteran of the War in Southeast Asia. In fact, the IOM has already stated, in their 2008 report, that “members of the Blue Water Navy should not be excluded from the set of Vietnam-era veterans with presumed herbicide exposure.”
    John Paul Rossie, Executive Director
    Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Association

    • salty’s wife

      John–It was good to see you were on here and giving the true facts. Hope something gets done soon.

      This is Karen wife of Randall that was in Washington DC. Randall was the one in the wheel chair. Randy was bad then, but much worse now. He is down to 140 pounds. The VA doctor let him go down so far before doing any testing to find he now has kidney cancer. He is to fibble to do any thing about it now.

      We still carry our Blue Water pins with pride. Thank You very much, and hope all goes well.

    • Ken Mayes

      Right on> Every word you said is so true. But why then is the VA still not conceding to these facts? I was in NAM only oneday to repair a teletype machine. When I got back my commanding officer told me that this never happened and that I was to forget that it ever did. So needless to say the incident was never put in the ships log. Was on board the USS Intrepid for two tours in Nam waters. Take 21 meds per day, 4 different inhalers and a nebulizer. Have 95% of all the listed effects of AO. But still denied benefits. Hope the Senate Bill S.1629 will be passed this year in congress. Thanks, Ken

    • Ronald Hall

      Mr. Rossie. I would like to say that my ship sat in the DaNang harbor day in day out. It still is not considered Brown Water . The Ship is The USS VALLEY FORGE. I agree with the IOM on their statement. The Valley supported operations with the Marine Corps . We sailed the coast lines in support, coast line meaning we seen land up close. But are still considered Blue Water.

  • Gary Wise

    To those who were on land in Vietnam and saw or were in fire fights I sympathize with you and your attitude of the only ones in the fight. I lost a close friend on a destroyer when a shell hit the door he was fastening down. When you were having troubles who came to your rescue? Many times it was navy fliers who by the way were many of the prisoners of war. When you need some heavy gun support the DD and DE were right there firing their 5″ guns. When more was needed the Missouri and New Jersey were recommissioned and you had the support of 16″ guns. When a plane was hit it was instructed to try and get to open water where our ships, doing search and rescue, picked them up. I know it was hell being on the ground in the Vietnam war, but others were away from their family and friends for months at a time. as far as C rations they were probably pretty close to navy food.

  • Melanie

    Can anyone pleas help my dad? He 72 years old and we’ve been back and forth with the va office pending a decision for compensation. Its been over 4 years, and they want proof that there was boots on ground in order to even start on his file. My dad was in the navy aboard a ship called USS Winston (AKA) 94. what can we do to proof this ship docked in vietnam?

    • Ken

      Melanie, it is now the duty of the VA to assist in the search of ships logs and crews. Do you have a VSO, Veterans Service Organization helping you? If not, get one, they can make things much easier if you have good representatives working for you.
      Also, see if your dad has any cruise books while on the ship, this are good and look for the ships websites, they will be able to help you if there are many of them left. If he received the Vietnam Service medal, this should be on his DD214 when discharged. Good luck.

    • Ken

      I just looked the ship up, if your dad was on it during this period, this should be plenty of evidence and this should work for you. It has the entire history of the ship including all the Vietnam dates it appears.

      • melanie

        thanks for the reply, however i tried sending the VA this info and they told me that I would still need to prove boots on ground.

        do you have any other suggestions?


    • Will


      If you look up the USS WInston you will see that that ship does have vietnam service go to,mil and look his ship up.

      Use this info as proof he was in vietnam.

  • chuck

    Hey if it was not from the president you would not be getting Agent Orange looked at now. He has done more for the vets than any of the last 5 presidents.

    • thehud

      Maybe I’m mistaken but didn’t YOUR president have the guts to say injured vets should pay for their own health insurance? Quickly changed his mind after being told that didn’t set well. Yep,,, he’s been great. OH MY GOD!!!

  • Lorraine Hoey

    Dealing w/ VA is always Combative, My hubby passed away in 2002 and still fighting, its a lost cause for me and I am disabled, now getting help from state, no matter what you try they find a way to get out of it, I am in such bad shape its pityful, i had a advocate, for 7 yrs then found out she was not a VA Advocate, I pay the penalty, I am seriously thinking of just saying good by to life, living like this is not living, just exsisting/taking up unneeded space, I have no strenth to fight anymore My hubby was in US Navy ATAKAPA149 Korea. waiting AGAIn,and again and again.. to hear from someone.
    , and what happens to to my phoney VA ADVOCATE? besides her getting her benefits? It hurts so much all our men and famililies having to fight, after giving their live for all of us. sorry if I sound bitter, but I am hurt very bad.

    • Ken

      Lorraine, contact a Veterans Service organization. DAV, VFW, AMVETS, American Legion, any of them and explain your situation. I will tell you that there has been a massive back log they are trying to get completed right now for claims that were denied until the new presumptions came out last year, and if your husbands claims may have fallen under the Nehmer ruling of the courts, you should be entitled to DIC. Don’t give up, it sometimes just gets overwhelming, but remember, it’s the government your dealing with.

  • Max Weiss

    I do not know if the author obtained a formal ruling or, conclusion from the VA regarding the application of the IOM report however, the report does not, repeat does not, support denial of blue water sailor claims on presumption of lack of exposure. In fact, the conclusion -below- equates plausible exposure pathways for all three groups.

    CONCLUSIONS: The committee identified several plausible exposure pathways and routes of exposure to Agent Orange–associated TCDD in the three populations, including Blue Water Navy personnel (see Figure 5-1)

    • Bill

      Correct and the statements are from a blog the VA commisioned but are not official statements.

  • Marc Falkenhan

    I did two WestPac cruises on the USS Buchanan (DDG-14). We were pretty much stationed in Danang Harbor. Our ship received a unit citation (Vietnamese Gallantry Cross) for saving a Marine Corps base on Monkey Mountain from being overrun because of our Naval Gunfire Support in 1969. In fact, the grateful Marines presented an AK-47 to the ship for saving them. We proudly displayed the weapon on our mess desks. I was the guy on the radio talking to the Marine on the base calling for the “emergency call for fire”. We were supporting other NGFS missions for both the Marines & the Army from I corps to IV corps. I also spent time onland in Danang as well as Saigon when I was taken off my ship via helo when I got out. I’ve recently filed VA reports to at least cover my meds. I suffer from high BP, skin cancer, diabetes. So to all those grateful Marines & Army troops….glad to support you however we could…………Marc in IL

  • Lynda

    Does anyone find it strange that Vietnam has been compensated for AO and our vets have to prove everything to their own govt? Blue water, brown water what does it matter? I say give them the AO benefits if they were serving in or anywhere around the area where there was agent orange sprayed. They were not told that they were being harmed by they’re own govt. So, shut up and pay up..You did it to the vets. now pay them……

    • Doubtom

      Yes, I find it very strange indeed that anyone has to verify what should be a matter of record as far as where a certain ship or unit was at any given time in Vietnam. I served with the BWN during the 67’68 Tet Offensive from Dong Tam in the Delta to Hue in I Corps; I saw the C-130’s fly formation at tree top level spraying Agent Orange immediately adjacent to our position. Now my unit was stationed in many areas during our stay in Vietnam but I’ll be damned if I can understand why I should have to prove it. What kind of records does the Navy keep anyway?

  • geals10

    The Australian Government conducted a study that resulted in information as to how the Naval Veterans of the Vietnam War were potentially exposed to the dangers of Agent Orange. Their study determined that the shipboard distillation of sea water CONCENTRATED the dioxin found in Agent Orange. Based on that study, the Australian, New Zealand, and Canadian Governments now provide benefits to their Blue Water Navy Vietnam War Veterans that served in the waters surrounding Vietnam. .. Why the shabby treatment for American Blue Water Vets?

    • mike

      we can all learn lessons from the Australian, New Zealand and Canadian Governments, as well at the citizens of these countries for the Support and Care that they give to their Veterans…

  • Tim

    From communications rejecting every claim I have ever submitted ,it sounds like the people that have our futures in their hands are a bunch of kids that never served any where to begin with. They think it’s their rights,their money, their honor that they are dealing with. If they could see what we saw , feel what we feel , and live with the daily memories that we have ,,,I wonder if decisions being made about benefits would be different.

  • RJ Chavez

    Has anyone ever noticed, the people that are denying us the so called “boots on ground” probably never went to Viet Nam, probably never served in the military, but yet they without any experiance, can deny the real people that fought for their freedom and safety – “BOOTS ON GROUND”.

    • mike

      Sooo Correct !….Mark Twain ” Politicians, like diapers, need to be changed regularly…and for the same reasons” Presently, Capital Hill is Stinky !!!

  • saigon68

    the guys who were in-country get little or nothing from the VA unless they are dying. tonkin gulf guys, good luck. i know a senior chief. gets $108,000.00
    per year. a cook. i got less than $8000 in 1968. hahaha!!

  • Bob

    I was on the USS Providence CLG-6 from Oct 66 to Jan 69 and we spent many nights in Da Nanang Harbor firing at Monkey Mountain. I can remember having to stand anti swimmer watches while we were anchored. The VA says you have to give them dates you were there to help when you file a claim. What 18-19 year old kid can remember the dates. Does this make the DaNang Harbor Report worth nothing now. I am still going to file a claim and see what happens.

    • Joseph F. Moody

      Bob, I was on the USS Oklahoma City when it anchored in Danang Harbor. The VA Board of Appeals granted me SC for Diabetes due to the presumtive exposure to AO (rendering DaNang Harbor Service as “In Country Service as an inland waterway) thus eligible. I was able to get Naval personnel records which narrowed down the dates of ” Vietnam service ” that made me eligible for the VSM. I was then able to get decklogs for those dates which confirmed the location of the ship. The personnel records also confirmed that I was aboard the ship at the time. I submitted this evidence to the BVA to support my appeal. The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Assn. can help you find out how to get the records and decklogs to submit. The BWNVNVA really provided me with help and information. You will be helped too, if you ask for it.



  • Guest

    That is what the VA wants, is you to give up, the best thing you can do is keep filling out the forms! It took me 3 years to get anywhere with them, If it hadn’t been for a couple of other Viet Nam vets I too would have given up, they said never give up sooner or later the VA will wake up!

  • Allen Mitchell

    My name is Allen Mitchell and I served aboard the USS England DLG-22 during the Vietnam war. I am a victim of kidney cancer, diabetes type ll and a heart condition known as atrial fibrillation. Currently, I have been told that because of the England being a blue water ship, basically I do not have a claim. I do recall my ship going up the delta on several occasion to rescue down pilots. The ships log is vague in this area. Can anyone help me. I cab be contacted at

  • guest

    It took me 40 years to get anything from the VA, I was given 80% disability finally, now I’m waiting for 100% hope this doesn’t take another 40 years! for those of you that are having problems, I gave The DAV power of attorney on my claims and that is when things started happening, you don’t have to be a disabled vet or a member they will help no matter what.

  • GLSmith

    To bklyn ( I hope that is not short for Brooklyn) I went to SEA to see what the SEA was all about.

    Ended up on the Vietnam coastline 3 times, . Now I have Ischemic Heart Disease (1995), Prostate Cancer (2005) and now testing for Diabetes 2 (2009) Filed in Feb 2005 on Drs advise for exposure to AO Now I am waiting for the courts and congress to make up their minds (sic) in 2011 I’ll be on heart meds the rest of my life. the Diabetes don’t look to good either. GLS

  • daniel

    My father was on the USS Pickaway and was a”river rat” from 66 to 68,he had prostate problems before he got out at age 29,the VA is no help to him either, you guys hang in there and keep fighting for what you have comming to you.I’m proud of my father and all of you guys.

  • lonedog1950

    Jerome Carter: AO is NOT a virus. Where did you get that idea.

    It was a man-made chemical soup of defoliants. Monasanto, Dupont and others mixed it according to the government recipe. The recipe was flawed. One of the by-products of the soup was dioxin. Dioxin is a chemical poison. One of the most deadly substances known. AO killed the vegetation quite effectively and now it is killing us, but it is not any kind of virus.

  • geals10

    Blue Water vets who have the Vietnam Service Medal (VSM) are given Agent Orange presumptive disability benefits by the VA, for the listed ailments prior to 2001. After 2001 the VA arbitrarily institutes the “boots on the ground” requirement, and Blue Water vets awarded the VSM and having the exact same circumstances, are denied presumptive disability benefits. This double standard is clearly ridiculous! Federal regulations prohibit discrimination against one class of vets. … What ever happened to “equal protection under the law!”

  • Randy

    Jerry file for ao The providence is on the list 1972 cua viet river her and the Oklahoma city relieved each other during that time frame the operation that was being supported was Lam Son.

  • Rodolfo Arriaga

    Veterans of Johnston Atoll are also being denied AO contamination disability benefits by the VA. The comment no direct exposure. Because AO was stored but not used on the Atoll. I have pictures of the barrels in stacked rows with large stains marking the leaking barrels of AO. Every time it rained the AO washed into the lagoon. That contaminated the lagoon. The sewerage system on the Atoll was a salt water sytem using sea water from the lagoon. So every time a commode or urinal was flushed an aerosol or AO contaminated Sea water was sent into the air. If there is anyone out there with direct knowledge of the sanitation plant and the sea water sewage system please contact me. If that is not direct contamination I don;t know what is. When I asked what is the difference between direct and indirect contamination by AO, I was told I was a smart ass. Answer; Contamination direct or indirect is still contamination.
    Rodolfo Arriaga
    Johnston Atoll

    • JoeS

      IF the color photo you have of AO stacked up on Johnston Island was taken from the internet, the VA will ignore that as “evidence”. EVEN if you have an original, Polaroid photo (can’t be manipulated) as I do, the VA STILL ignores it as evidence.
      Please visit the Face Book page, “Agent Orange Okinawa” and see what’s been posted.

      • Rodolfo Arriaga

        The Pictures I have are in the Johnston Island Gazett those pictures were taken by Air Force Air Traffic Controler Wayne Grover in 1975. Does anyone have a copy of that Magizine? Please contact me

  • Sorry but Navy guns never helped us out at Khe Sanh ..You can not compare combat to sitting offshore safe and sound to being the same thing. Ate Navy chow before no comparison to eating “C” rations for 70 some days.

    • Butch

      Safe and sound? You have alot of nerve with a statement like that! You sound like you believe it was only the grunts in battle…. I served on the Richard B Anderson DD 786….we fired over 38,000 rounds, we were one of the few ships in DesRon 15 not to take a direct hit ( this is with 1,200 counter batterys) even going into Haiphong Harbor ( didn`t see any grunts that far north!) I`m sick and tired of the people who try to deminish the Navy`s role in the VietNam war.

  • Joe

    Maybe,,just maybe,the VA is finally going to do the right thing.I served on the USS Kitty Hawk for 2 tours.As a jet mechanic,I believe I was exposed to many dangers of AO and asbestos. Yes, I suffered from “GUILT” as not having boots on the ground,but with repeated thanks from many of those who were on the ground,telling me how relieved they were when those Navy Phantoms came in screaming at tree top level to give them support,I have learned that we all had a part in serving our country. To those who feel that they were extra special in what they did,I somewhat agree,but we all gave some.Thanks to those who had “Boots on the ground”,but I believe if you really think about it somewhere or sometime ,the “Blue Water Navy” probably helped you out.

    • Jack

      I too was onboard the USS Kittyhawk. I do not have AO but, severe asbestosis. A shipmate of mine while onboard the USS Enterprise, Les Wright was awarded 100% compensation for AO, stating that “AO was all over that flight deck!” Good luck to you

  • Joe

    I work at the VA… Also to note on the blue water Vets. Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL) is now considered presumptive for Blue Water Vietnam Vets.

  • R.W.Youngs

    Does anyone have any info concerning possible A.O. exposure for duty in Thailand in the late 1960s and early 70s? Specifically any claims for Type11 diabetes being awarded a 20% disability?

    • Bill Penrod

      When filling claims from Thailand do not use the term AO file for direct exposure to Herbercides………………..

  • Sarg

    If you served in or around Vietnam you should be intitled to AO benefits, I served with the 1st Marine Div in vietnam and have not applied for benefits but there is a lot that the Gov is not telling you. Dont be led astray by test.

  • John Meno

    I was a Radioman E3 on the USS Mahopac (ATA196) from 1968 to 1971. I just recently filed my claim for PTSD but have not gotten a response (April to June 2011). My shipped made 6 tours to Vietnam during that time and docked in Da Nang, Vung Tau and Cam Rahn Bay on several of those tours. While docked in Da Nang and Vung Tau, I had to turn off our radio equipment onboard, and had to walk to the communicatrions station on land to pickup and deliver messages for at least 1 week at a time. I am what is being called “Blue Water Navy”, however, I actually did set foot on Vietnam soil where Agent Orange was being used and proven to be present at dangerously high levels. I suggest for others to read the document titled “The Da Nang Harbor Report” at this link: to see if it would help them in contesting whatever judgment was made specific to them by the VA.

  • Ralph Martinez

    Congress has not forgotten the Blue Water navy veterans.Information is available to prove that your vessel or any vesse listed on The Blue Water Navy Website. If your vessel is listed and you can prove that you served during the vietnam war aboard that vessel then you shuld not have to appeal your claim. Documentation is need to support your claim.Apply to the naval archives to secure your records.Assignment orders,duty logs or ship logs etc.

  • Sean M. Kelly

    First crew ships co- USS SANCTUARY AH 17 (Hospital Ship) arrived on Yankee Station-67. Two Skippers: Capt. Collingwood- ships co, Capt Dufner- medical. Rose from the ranks: SN to FN to Machinist Mate 3rd Class ( 10 took test- I was the only one rated). I use to go out on the different decks and talk to patients. Attached to “M -Div- Evaporators”. Year later at VA-Mission Valley east of May Co parking lot- was told not to have anymore children. Previous marriage 1968-1972 our son had “Down Syndrone’ – 3 others varous medical problems. I have Fibromyagia and Severe Muscler Pain Syndrone-sent VA 2009 5# Package, turn down, reopenned. Been married 38 yrs 2nd marriage + 3 sons. Other Navys support their VN Vets, I went ashore work parties- don’t know how much time I have. Their is no cure for my condition, was medical cleared before reporting to USS Sanctuary AH 17.

    • Bill Penrod

      Both the Sanctuary and Repose are on the presumtive list…………..

  • DaveB

    The water I saw of Viet Nam in 1970 was green not blue the guys that had made past deployments said that the water looked differant there were not the sea snakes or other forms of sealife that they had seen in past cruises , something must have changed we need to help the Iraq and Afgan vets from being treated like this

  • Butch

    The Missouri never fought in VietNam…the New Jersey BB 62 was the only battleship comissioned at that time

  • Ken Mayes

    Call your U.S. Rep., Tell them to support House Bill
    # 812, Agent Orange Equality Act. And pass the word. We need this bill passed this YEAR. Thanks, Ken

  • JLintonDAVCSO

    As a Disabled American Veterans (DAV) Chapter Service Officer (CSO), I am not afforded the ability to form an opinion as to the validity of any claim filed for service connection. We are instructed while completing yearly training for certification, to assemble the claim to the best of our ability, submit the completed forms to National DAV for review and submission to the Veterans Administration. The decision of award or denial is the burden of the Department of Veteran Affairs (DVA). Let me also mention that I volunteer my services, and that this service is free to all veterans, with no need to be a member of the organization. That being said let me continue.

    As I read through these posts it was quite evident as to the animosity shown towards fellow veterans of other branches, as well as the VA. I understand the pain, and frustration we as veterans go through, being I am a combat wounded veteran of Vietnam. I also understand that there are claims filed for compensation that are truly false, and sometimes unwarranted, and that this has become a sorely discussed topic for some. Those aside, I feel we as veterans need to be united, when dealing with these issues. Unless the individual posting has an expertise in the field of discussion, they should refrain from commenting on whether a veteran by any means, is entitled to a claim for Agent Orange, or any other service connected condition. These comments are not only hurtful, but destructive as well.

    J. Linton

  • JLintonDAVCSO

    Those of you that have filed, and have yet to receive an answer from the VA, it currently takes approximately 12 to 16 months to receive a decision from the VA, unless the claim was filed as a presumptive fast track claim. Any time you request an additional service connection while your original claim is in progress; will cause an increased delay of decision, as the new claim is being reviewed. If the claim was originally a fast track claim, the claim will be diverted into the traditional claims process, and into the 12 to 16 month group.

    Good Luck,
    J. Linton

  • JLintonDAVCSO

    Those that have received a decision or denial, and who disagree with the decision have one year from the date of that decision to file a disagreement. Note that I said from the date of the decision, not the date of filing. When filing a disagreement, file it as reconsideration, not an appeal.

    Example using VA Form 21-4138:
    “Please be advised, I am filing for reconsideration of decision dated 06/22/2011, for service connection of Ischemic Heart Disease. I am including medical evidence in support of claim.”

    The appeal process can take years, and the decision is final. This meaning, any attempt to re-open the claim will need to include new evidence in support of claim. No previously used evidence will be considered in the new claim. An appeal should only be used as a last resort, as it is final. Reconsideration can be used multiple times in the adjudicating of a claim.

    Good Luck,
    J. Linton

  • JLintonDAVCSO

    When filing a claim and you have very little evidence in support of said claim; you can use letters of support from those that served with you. If you haven’t kept in contact since discharge, use search engines like Zabasearch to locate individuals. Don’t forget the internet, as there are many sites that have units, ships, veteran web pages, reunions, etc. I have located over 150 guys from my unit in the past few years.

    You do not need exact dates for evidence. The VA requires a 2-3 month window for incidents, and they have the resources to research that information. I do recommend that you do whatever research you possibly can, as there are no guarantees the VA will find the information you need.

    It is advisable to file a claim for compensation even if a representative thinks the claim may not have merit. These individuals should not attempt to make that decision, but they are human, and sometimes can’t refrain from offering an opinion. The Department of Veteran Affairs has the final decision, but remember sometimes even their decisions are not final. Don’t give up, and get a rep. Let him or her carry the stress.

    I am including this link from the Department of Veteran Affairs web-site. There is some very good information on Agent Orange, with spray areas in and out of Vietnam, including the United States.

    Good Luck,
    J. Linton

  • JLintonDAVCSO

    I apologize for the multiple post, but the site would not let me post my information in it’s entirety. It was suggested that I break it up into smaller segments. It was meant to be read in whole, and if you would like a copy in that format, send me a message with email, and I will send you one.

    Be Well,
    J. Linton http://WWW.H-Troop17thCav.Com

    • GLSmith

      JLinton: Sounds sound, but not true . I had a county VSO then DAV VSo. Neither looked at my claims I filed three 2oo5, 2006,2008 or 9. The County VSO looked at what I wrote, stuffed it into a folder then a week later sent the 2005 claim to BayPines in St Petersburg (He told me that). Second claim was filed in the same office, the guy there had it all fouled up, missed half the documentation, and had to call another person to see if I COULD file another claim (2006) Same guy on 2008/9. Sept 2009 swiched from countyVSO to DAV VSO closer to home, had three meetings with DAV VSO lasting a day. No privacy in the area, although it was designated as DAV it also operated as a clearing house for troubled teens (ALL IN THE SAME ROOM) 2cd meeting lasted another day 8 hours of setting there, watching people come and go, all the while we are sitting there going thru my records. For about 6 months while with him, I thought my papers were safe, I learned that they were actaully missing. They were found by the DAV VSO in the DEAD VETERANBS box. I was very happy they were found. The last time I met with this VSO, he had his lunch serrved by his wife and he dropped food all over my paper work. That was the last time Isaw him until I received a letter from ST Peete VA office stating, “Your records have been sent to The Court of Appeals in Wa, DC. (Feb 2010) In the five years my claims were held ( IKNOW NOT WHERE), then they were sent to DC, I never had any sort of hearing, meeting with anybody resembling a court reporter much less a Judge, lawyer or anyone resembling they had authority, other than my VSOs. Don’t tellme they are highly trained!!

      • JLintonDAVCSO

        If you read my first posting I mentioned being a volunteer Chapter S/O. I do this entirely at my expense. I pay for my daily gas, 600 miles round trip training, with 3 days of hotel expenses. My post is to assist fellow veterans in the filing, and handling of claims. I am not here to be anyone’s whipping post, or punching bag.
        The handling of your claim has indeed been shoddy. It also seems by your reply, that you were not fully informed of the claims process. If you filed your claim at a local/chapter office which it sounds like you did, then the rep should forward your claim to the regional office upon completion. Preferably the same day, this is to lock in your award date. Some veterans prefer to wait, and have all their evidence sent in together. That is their call, but I do advise them to do it as soon as posible. Bay Pines is your regional office.
        You say the rep called someone to ask whether or not you could file another claim. That also is standard procedure when a local VSO doesn’t have an answer, and needs clarification. The mishandling, and privacy is another matter.
        The DAV being a busy, crowded place is not at all uncommon. DAV chapters are run, staffed, and financed by veterans like yourself. They volunteer to stand on corners, run Bingo’s, etc. to raise money to keep the doors open. If they share their building with another organization to keep running, more power to them. In our chapter it is hard to get volunteers, with the same people showing up each time. We get many people coming through the door asking for help, but few willing to. Most of our people are 60 to 80 years of age. I will not knock them because someone waits for one of our service officers. It sounds like your office had only one.
        The current procedure is no veterans records will be kept in house. That is because of the VA losing, and shredding veterans files a few years back.
        When an Appeal is requested, records are sent to the Court of Appeals to be reviewed, and unless a hearing is requested, (in person/or video) a decision will be made, with representaion from the National Service Officer if needed.
        It’s sounds like your frustration is the cumilative result of mishandling, and the VSO’s inability to keep you informed of the process. I stress to the veteran to contact us if they have any questions, or if they have not heard anything within a designated time frame. Thousands of claims pass through our office each year, preventing contact to each client. That is why I stress they take ownership, and get involved with their claims.
        J. Linton

        • smoke52

          My CVSO told me that he would put in a claim for me for typeII diabetes or acne form dermitis. This SO is a career army vet.

  • hydrod

    I was on the USS Orleck DD-886 during this time, I looked up the ship’s that they told us were eligible, found the Orleck but they said it was in Nam in July 1969 (Ok I seem to remember being there in 1965, 1966, 1968) Anyway what I’m getting at is that I found the ship’s logs on the internet, now I’ve got proof of all the times we ancored for shore bombardment, the times we went into Da Nang to pick up spotters. ancored next to the sagon river. I was supprised to learn I went to more places than I remember. So guys do a little research, you’d be supprised what you can find on the net. It just might help. And as we all know as, it has always been, hurry up and wait.
    The goverment loves paperwork, so give it to them.

    • James Lopez

      Where on the internet did you find ship’s log information. I would really like to find my ship’s S.O.R.M. was on U.S.S. Sacremento AOE 1 for two tours. We had nuclear weapons onboard and the VA has reffused to even comment about them. We also carried AO, which we transferred to carriers for use on their planes.

  • Dewayne W Gardnerw

    I have been trying to get AO compensation for about 5-6 years or more. Since
    this list of BWN ships has been published I do not see the ship I was on listed.
    I was on the Uss Richard S Edwards DD950, She was in the Gulf of Tonkin
    in 1964. She was also in the Vietnam area in 1962 also, I was on her for both
    tours. I have been refused compensation for AO, although I have 2 presumptive
    deseases associated with AO, and from these deseaes I have 3 other after effects attributed to AO. I am wondering what I have to do to be recognized.

  • W.R. Benedict

    I was stationed at “Gitmo” before during and after “Crisis” in 1962 with Navy Seabees.(USN MCB#4) We were at the MLR for ther entire time. Place was defoliated several times. Must have used AO (used a lot in Caribbean at that time) Have diabetes and Prostate cancer. Cant get any info . Any suggestion or sites

  • Bill ADCS USN Ret.

    John…just curious, did you happen to take any photos while you were “in-country” passing through on emergency leave? Maybe of the aircraft that you flew on from DaNang to Saigon? I don’t think boots on the ground means exactly 24 hours. As long as you stepped on the ground I think you would qualify as “boots on the ground”.


    nothing that will truly benefit the mass of blue water vietnam service people will ever come from this group of people on the VBA, thats trying to preserve all the money for the oportunity for the time when they can cash in for themselves. they figure that you are a theif and you are trying to get their money. if anyone get anything, it is only for the cameras. we need new officials in the VBA and in congress on these committees. they want you to go away, go away and die, so that they can get before the cameras and pretend to honor your sevice after you’re dead. SHEESH, SHEESH, SHEESH

  • Guest

    Like the other vet said….that’s what the VA wants !! They want you to either die or go away !! Took me about four years also but finally they decided I wasn’t going away… Received 60% disability and a nice chunk of change for four years retroactive pay. Th key word is “APPEAL”. One word of caution…make sure you appeal on ime or your case is kaput….

  • Dan D

    If you kept a copy of your TAD travel orders you may have a chance. If you knew anyone else that was on the flight(s) or traveling on the same set of orders (group travel) that kept a copy of the orders, they may be able to supply and confirm that you did have boots on the ground.

    VA is Slow but eventually you may get a positive response and it is worth fighting for.

  • Noreen & Don

    Dear Mrs. Chavez, we have just sent you an email at the above-given email… DO check your junk/bulk/spam inboxes…. the subject-line reads: ~ question from POSSIBLE ship-mate!

    Don & Noreen

    • RJ Chavez

      Dear Noreen & Don: This is Mrs. Chavez – No I don’t check my junk/bulk/spam inboxes – This is the first time I read this part of any reply regarding my husbands possible shipmates.. If you have any information can you please send it to or any help you can give us would be and will be greatly appreciated. Also phone numbers are 505-404-9800 or 505-804-2666. Ask For Margaret Chavez. Again my sincere gratitude and heartfelt thank you goes out to you… Sincerely, Margaret Chavez P.S. We have been on this site for almost 2 yrs with no replies – your comment is a very uplifting and hopeful – AGAIN THANK YOU….

  • Griffin

    I did a combat tour as Marine — 65-66 and i was exposed as heavily as anyone – My claim is now over 5 years old !And now some sailors were in the inland waters —- after 70-71 etc —- and want compensation ! I smell a scam !! Griffin

  • Tim

    I’m a Army Veteran. Proud to have served my country. I need to comment on the those who falsely claim injuries and/or illness due to their military service. I have witnessed far too many who receive VA benefits for reasons that defy the imagination. It is morally wrong and disenigenuous for them to take money away from those fellow vets who truely need it. Shame on them and the ground they walk on.

  • Noreen & Don

    We just checked that .pdf ‘list’ ~ who do we contact to CORRECT it? My husband’s ship, the USS Molala, ATF 106 is not on the list, yet we have DOCUMENTATION that proves both his ship and he WERE in Vietnam. The list is incomplete, and must be corrected. Please advise as to whom to contact for updating.

  • Raymond Patey

    I sent in deck logs proving that my DD spent three days anchored in Danang Harbour in early ’72, but due to the VA secretarys decision that Danang Harbour is not part of Viet Nam, my claim for ischemic heart disease has been denied. I have initiated an appeal, but so far, it hasnt left my RAO. Anybody else have this problem of the RAO pidgeonholing the appeal, and is this a ploy to make sure my time constraints are not made for an appeal?

  • Raymond Patey

    To the person that believes you must have been at the Tet Offensive or crawled around on the ground, or got shot at, ect this is why they have the disabling condition for mental problems due to their service. Dont you for one minute think that a service man must have had it rough in order to make a claim for a disability incurred in service.

  • lsa

    To Jerome Carter–Find the flight log that puts you on the and the plane in Nam-VA will not have it- If you & plane are verified you have a plausable claim.
    Had a simular incident where guy flew to DaNang on 5 different mail runs- total time on ground based on flight logs was 3 hours- He is service connected for diabetes and Prostate Cancer due to CONFIRMED EXPOSURE!!

    • george Rupp

      I flew into DaNang in Sept or Oct 69 from U-Tapo in typhoone evac from Guam. Met with fellow bomb loaders from the 75 th MMS for 2 days. The Air Force can’t find any TYY records.

      How did you resolve the records?

  • Ken

    Also, file a (NOD), Notice of Disagreement for your exsisting claim and denial. Submit this through your VSO or the person handeling your claim. There are more than 700 ships that have not all been verified, however, for the vets filing claims and their representatives, this assists the VA with updateing the list. There is also some ships that are under a blanket designation for their hull numbers and their job status.

  • salty’s wife

    Micheal–I looked up that info. you gave me, and I want to thank you. It’s _been very hard taking care of my husband and trying to find info., too._I will be making an appointment with his Veterans rep. as soon as possable. Thank you,–salty’s wife

  • P. T. Quinn

    To: Mr. Jon Dewitt, ℅ Military.Com

    Subject: Agent Orange

    Dear Mr. Dewitt:

    It is with the deepest respect that I respond to your comments in the blog regarding Agent Orange dated June 21, 2011.

    I am afraid that I must totally disagree with you in your assumption that you only qualify for AO if you were in a firefight or combat and observed the gruesome sites that you claim. When I enrolled with Military.Com, I was under the assumption that as brothers and sisters in uniform, we were supposed to be of assistance to each other and care for each other. Well my friend, I have found that comments such as those that you posted do not hold up to that philosophy.

    Just so you know and understand, I come from a large “MILITARY” family. Six boys and one girl. My father served in the Navy from 1935 to 1959. Of the seven siblings, five joined the military so that we could follow in my father’s footsteps. All were proud of our duty in whatever branch we served. All combined, our family has provided over 65 years of dedicated and loyal service to this country, and that definitely includes Viet Nam.

    Now, with regard to your comments about Khe Sahn: My oldest brother was at Khe Sahn in 68 and suffered the same things that I am sure you did. He was also in the battle for Khe Sahn Valley. He is to this day, even though not on active duty, the proudest Marine in this country. He saw the same things, suffered the same tragedies and witnessed the same events.

    As for my other brothers, all served in either the Army or the Marines, and all were involved in hostile actions. Three were critically wounded. As for me, I was in the Air Force, in Intelligence. I was stationed at Korat Royal Thai AFB. However, Imade more trips to VN than I care to think about. On many occasions, I had my A – –
    in the grass with my fellow brothers in the Army and Marine Corps. Too, I have seen death up close, had young boys die in my arms, and cried for hours afterwards.
    I have buried more coffins bearing the “STARS AND STRIPS” and always give the utmost respect to those that are now serving and to those that have given so much more than asked. Most of all, I can only feel that it is my duty and obligation to help those veterans and active military that are in need. Not to criticize, belittle, or otherwise chastise them for their concerns. After all, you were not in their shoes, you did not travel the paths they did, and they did so willingly. Of most importance, just as you, THEY earned those benefits offered by the VA. They have earned the right to climb the hill, stand on the wall, and as I saw on a tee shirt so eloquently put: “You called, I answered.”

    I am truly sorry that you had to go through so much, and that you feel the way that you do. You seem to forget that others went just as much if not more. Rather than express you very negative thoughts on this site, as one brother to another who has also been traumatized by the horror of war, have compassion, understanding and demonstrate a willingness to help. We have ALL earned those benefits and are not being treated justly.

    Thank you for your time and hopefully reading and understanding what I am trying to say. Just as many of you that are faithful readers of this site, I have PTSD, uncontrollable asthma, fibro myalgia, diabetes II, severe and chronic sinusitis and rhinitis, severe hearing loss, among other things, and am on some 34 medications. If you think I haven’t served my time in He_ _, please think again. Because I am also one of those fighting the VA.

    God Bless and take care.

    P. T. Quinn

    • David Hilden sr.

      Mr. Quinn i couldnt have said it better . those of us that did serve did so as we were told and willingly so these othors could sat back on their backside and be little us. amazing isnt it? thank you mr. Quinn and your family for your service to this country. also too each and everyone that did serve in vietnam or anywhere else GOD BLESS each and everyone of you.

    • Myra Segars

      God Bless you, Thank you for your service.

  • H.B. Fortner

    I was not inland but was on CVA-64 in VA-27. I was a “Plane Captain” and worked on the flight deck almost every day. Part of our duties were to keep the planes clean. We had A-7′ s which were the worst planes to leak hydralic fluid. This fluid would stick to the sides of the aircraft and to make things worse the aircraft had dual gattlin guns, 20 MM , one on each side. When the planes came back from “sorties”, each plane captain had to wash his plane. This involved washing the sides and the belly of the aircraft. This was bad enough for we had to lay on our backs on the deck with the washing solvents dripping and blowing on us and of course what ever else was stuck to the aircraft after it had straffed and bombed the inland. No doubt it was mixed with AO? Could hardly believe that one of my ship mates had died only a few years later from cancer. I’ve had 2 heart ATTACKS AND 4 bypasses myself and am suffering from degenarative arthritis among a slew of other problems
    that are abnormal for my family history. Any other flight deck sailors out there with similar problems?

  • Joedy

    I have just seen the list of ships on the AO Blue Water list, but what about the Aircraft Carriers that launched the Aircraft loaded with AO for flights incountry. What happens too all the men on that ship and flight deck? Every time an aircraft takes off the pressurize the drop tanks and fuel and AO is in the air on deck.
    Tell me I’m wrong, because all ships around in that group get the drinking water from the sea. If that mission gets cancled they dump what ever they have next to the fleet!!!

    • salty’s wife

      Thank You!!! We were also told that by a guy at the VA. He was ahead of a group for PTSD. What in the world do we have to do to make the VA understand?

      I’m all for a big march!!!

    • Mikey

      Sorry Joedy, but you are not supposed to be that smart and question those things…All aircraft, all personel, clothing, supplies, everything that comes off the aircraft is already contaminated…all the way into the berthing areas, showers..every place they go, NOW exposed…unless immediate quarantine is ordered…everything is now contaminated…Sorry…

  • CA Boyer

    My husband died a year and a half ago at the age of 60 with complications from asbestosis and heart failure. He was on 3 different ships – the Boxer, Richard E. Byrd and the Vermillion and was a BT on all of them from 1968-72. He always said he thought he was exposed to AO, as many times he had to move barrels of it on the ships. During the last 17 years of his life he had many, many health problems besides his lungs including (but not limited to) diabetes, tremors, arthritis, neuropathy, glucloma, depression and more. I was just wondering if a Blue Water claim should be made?

    • Joedy

      CA Boyer,
      Contact the Blue Water Assoc. by e-mail and ask for there help, or see a VFW Service Officer. If you can get a Doctor to say what made him pass on you have a chance for help from the VA.
      Yes, place a claim in as soon as possible!

  • troy ivey

    I was on the USS Cochran DDG-21 66-69, viet Nam 3 times, know we were docked in DaNang harbor taking on supplies and personal yet this ship does not show up on the blue or brown water list. Was this one of those top secret missions that does not show up on any logs?
    If any one out there was on this ship at this time I’d like to hear from you.

    • john abbe

      I was on USS Edson DD946, USS Hull DD945 !966-1968, and we were in Na Nang and Cam Ron Bay, Would any shipmates have added knowledge about these operation, Blue Water Navy, I got shot down on Agent Orange by the VA.Please let me know. God Bless all you Vets, Thanks, John

  • JoeS

    @Bill Laliberte – you might like to visit the Face Book page “Agent Orange Okinawa”. As recent as April, 2011, The Japan Times published an article regarding AO on Okinawa. Other evidence is posted there. Please “Like” and share your experiences. See if you have any color photos from your time there and check the background objects. You might have the smoking gun.

  • carriervet

    why did we recieve the vietnam service medal and the vietnam campaign medal
    if we are vietnam era vets

    • bite me

      Then Korean veterans who NEVER set foot in Korea .. are considered Korean Era Veterans…So are Iraq Veterans, and I guess that would also apply to all WWII veterans…

    • Ronald Hall

      We are Vietnam Veterans ! Who served our country whether on a ship,river boat or in the jungle. We Served !! Not as era vets, but as Vietnam Vets.

  • Ron Freeze MM3

    We cleaned the engine room with brooms and vacuum .. where did the dirt come from???? I stood watch as a throttle man under force air coming from topside ….. I drank the distilled water the Aussies say was concentrated with the poison … ME … diabetic, neuropathy (started before diabetic) Lupus .. what the heck …

  • patrickvilla48

    i was aboard the USS Providence CLG-6 in 1968 and 1969 and operated in da nang , cam rhan bay, hoi an in close shore heavy gun assist. we too were fired on several times as with you, we got perishables from the same places. i have recently found out that there may be exposure as I have contracted severe asthma, gall stones (removed) sleepless nites and other difficulties. i do have document that state we were BWN and operated in areas where AO had been dispursed and the residuals only came down the grasslands and settled in the harbor of da nang. I am applying for any possible benefits ..or help. have had numerous hospitalizations in less than one year as a result and this was recently .

  • lee stamper

    I was on a gun boat up the river and it took the government 40 years to add it to the exposed list. dahhh

    • bite me

      Yes, they are really quick to respond..I only hope it helps you and that you are able to receive compinsation for your suffering…best of luck…

  • dennis

    We as vets go out and do our job and go where others to go and as always
    we hear, is prove it or you did something wrong not them or in this case don’t drink the water. the only try to line there pocket . Ihave to stop now before I get mad.

  • Lee

    Like many other Blue Water Navy Veterans that spent months on the DMZ gun line providing daily night and all day naval gun support to the Army and Marines. my ship DD836 USS George K. Mackenzie was covered in soot and probable AO from B52 bombing carried out over the DMZ. For weeks you could smell dirt in the air after those raids. We were close enough that the force of the bombs shoke the ship like an earthquake. And yes we washed down the ship on station (at the DMZ) to get the dirt and soot off the ship.

    We were close enough to be fired upon by North Vietnam shore batteries, but our support of ground troops at the DMZ doesn’t mean we were not exposed? All of us Vietnam Service/Campain vets deserve the right to be tested.

  • Jerome Long

    The “boots on the ground” qualification is phony. It implies that vet who served in Da Nang did not breath the same air as the vet who served on board a ship tied to a pier in Da Nang harbor. AO was an airborne chemical and was easily blown in microscopic form by the winds.

  • bite me

    Non-related question..Please, Someone..I filed a claim with VA 7 + mos. ago, I know I’m acting naive but I was wondering just how long a Veteran has to wait for their response, because I will only have to appeal it and start all-over again…..I was under the impression that this administration was going to “stream-line” the whole process !! Ha Ha Ha…

    • DocGay

      DocGay-TO-bite me(2 weeks ago)I was told by the VA it could take up to a year or maybe longer.I filed 4 months ago myself and I get a letter every now and then saying the same old thing”Still working on your claim will keep in touch”.It will make you DEPRESSED how our system works now a days.You ask what you can do,(JUST WAIT AND HANG IN THERE BROTHER).If you got lots of MONEY you can get an ATTORNEY.Me I can’t afford one so I will try to maintain and WAIT it out. De Oppresso Liber

    • J59 er


  • Walt j

    I am a Vietnam veteran. 1968. 1969. I don’t like to talk about my time there. I will be 65 this year and share many of the experiences and health problems listed. I served aboard the USS CORRY DD 817. GOOGLE the ship name and read Lt. Bill Baldwin brief yet not complete account of our experience. The Corry is not listed in the military ships ‘In Country’. I can say we were in the rivers a lot. Good luck on your paper. Walt J


    DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY OFFICE OF THE ADJUTANT GENERAL ALEXANDRIA VA —MACV FIXED WING AIRCRAFT HERBICIDE INCIDENTS REPORT DATED 15october1981 ID NUMBER 001189 clearly shows herbicides(including agent orange)was intentionally jettisoned over water from aborted missions over vietnam.yes–it came from the sky also.

    • Dennis

      Can you help with any info?

  • crystal via

    It is ashame that our veterans risked their lives and many had died and this countrys government does’nt even recognize that they all deserve to be compensated for the hell they went through. Yet they are willing to give aid to our enemies and help the countries over seas and do nothing for our soldiers, it makes me sick.My husband served in vietnam he does’nt say much about what he went through but coming back wounded and the people in this country rediculing him as he came into California and the names and spitting at them like many other soldiers,what ignorance. Several of my cousins died in Vietnam and all their mothers got was a flag, is there anyone out there to help these veterans get the benefits they deserve and standing up to our corupted government who cares nothing for these brave men and women who serve this country with their lifes. May god bless all of you and I will pray that in some way there is help for all you because everyone who faught over deserved their benefits no mater where it was.

    Thanks to all of you couragous soldiers who served.
    Crystal V from Tennessee.

  • bite me

    Hi, anyone remember MAC flights from Clark AFB back to Conus ??? Here we actually hitched a ride on a C-130 from Clark back to the U.S. however, the C-130’s were also used to transport supplies as well as body bags..Gee, these C-130″s were cleaned but not decontaminated, You throw your belongings onboard and set back for a long flight back to the U.S. Unaware of the exposure to Agent Orange from the previous cargo carried on board…OOOOOPs Sorry, but Toxic Chemical exposure does NOT pick and choose…Either a boot on the Ground, or Butt on an inflight seat……Exposure is Exposure

    • alvin e thomas

      Aman! I am a US Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veteran, who has had 4-5 strokes at at 53 and one heart attack in 2008. Approved for service connection by a VA Hospital, and still denied by the Wisconsin VA. The Wisconsin VA acts like we were the enemy!!!

  • Bill

    After seeing how the Navy had to keep moving the ships sent to help the people of Japan after the sunami hit; .because of the high amount of radition comming offf shore ; I can’t help but wonder what happened to the Agent Orange that was sprayed in Viet Nam. I guess that there was a wall just at the waters edge that stopped it from going out to the ships anchored just off shore. In 1965 the USS Boxr LPH4 was anchored at the pier, so it made the list of elegible ships. I was aboard the Boxer in 1966 and because of no place to tie up at the pier’s, we dis-enbarked all our supplies and Marines at all of our destinations by using our chinooks. We took R&R trips for soldiers and Marines to Guam and Japan and had the same problem both picking them up and returning them to [Da-Nang ] [Quy-Nhom] & [ Nha Trang]

  • DocGay

    DocGay,Agent Orange nothing new about that word.There are other countries in this world that our Government SPRAYED AO.I was stationed in Panamal in the mid and late 1960’s.The 8th SFG sprayed the jungels,Drop Zones where the Paratroopers made their jumps at.I was a Medic and had to do Drop Zone coverage alot.But it is really sad that our own Government denies everything about it.Games over now,anyone that has no idea about if it was sprayed can find it on the web.(Agent Orange Panamal Canal Zone in the 1960’s).File your claims before time runs out for you to do so.I filed 4 months ago and keep getting letters saying the same old thing,We are still working on your claim.Oh well what you going to do??WAIT AND WAIT. De Oppresso Liber

  • Adrian

    Whatever happened to the posting of the USS James C. Owens(DD776) this ship did active duty in the waters of Vietnam and helped to shell the huts the enemy were using at that time. Why is it not listed ?

  • Dwayne Bright

    I am a military child who’s Father served honorably in Vietnam. He was a Crew Chief on a Huey. My brother was conceived prior to his service and I was conceived very shorty after his return. I was a cop and doing well until my immune system began attacking my brain and body at about the age of 29. I am now 38 and am having to be treated by some of the best autoimmune docs in the Country. My Father also has the exact same symptoms as I. I cannot fathom that this has nothing to do with agent orange exposure. Are there any studies about this and if so would someone direct me to the correct place? Thanks to all the VETS FOR THEIR SACRIFICES!

  • wrightvedder

    Was in the 25th Infantry Division from March 1969 till November 1970. Base camp was Cu Chi. According to the VA maps it was one of the areas with the highest concentrations of agent orange. I submitted forms to the VA and was later told that I am not qualified for any agent orange benefits because I do
    not have conditions that currently meet the criteria. Seems like the USA is still having some trouble with saying ” welcome home”.

    • alvin thomas

      Yes they are having trouble saying “welcome home”, and the VA is leading the pack. I am a 1965-66 Navy Viaetnam Veteran who the VA Hospital has “service connected”, but the VA won’t. I have had 4-5 Ischemic strokes and 1 Ischemic heart attack. But according to them I am not service connected, after they sent me for the exam!

  • Ronald Hall

    I as a Vietnam Veteran I read where the Navy and Marine Corps on board ships should or will be awarded the Purple Heart for brain injuries . I feel that any service member who has a presumptive illness from Agent Orange should receive the Purple Heart for the pain and suffering and a premature death that he or she has or had to endure .

  • charles sweet

    Does anyone have any info on uss lynde mc cormick ddg 8 and the tonkin gulf, If so could you email all info and pictures to chuck at thanks guys Ineed all I can get my mind is gone

  • look at and get big save chanelbags , just clicks away

  • john bury

    The VA is wrong. We Blue Water Sailor who never had boots-on-groung Vietnam drank fresh water distiled from sea water that has Dioxin in it and in some cases breathed the stuff. We deserve equil rights. Thousands are sick and not cared about.

    • A/O was SPRAYED over Vietnam by C-130’s…As I stated before… ” IF ITS IN THE AIR…..ITS EVERYWHERE !! …..and I beg anyone with the CDC, or the AMA to PROVE that it is not true !!…Thank you for your service…Mike

    • Ken Mayes

      right on John!!!!!!!!!!! I guess all we can do is to contact our U.S. Senators and Huose of Reps. Tell them to act favorably to the legislation in the U. S. Senate. Senate Bill S.1629 Sponsored by Senators Graham (S. C.) and Gillibrand (N.Y.). It would reverse the VA decision prevention BWN from claiming presumptive status for the disease associated with A.O. exposure. Please pass this on to everyone you know, Thanks Ken.

  • Ken Mayes

    John: You are right. We BWN vets were exposed to the dioxins sprayed in Vietnam. The only thing we can do now is for us to do the following.

    We need to contact our US Senators and Reps. Tell them to agree favorably to the Agent Orange Equity Act of 2011. Senate Bill ( S.1629). It was introduced by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) on Sept. 23, 2011. It is currently pending before the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs for review. Please tell everyone you know to contact their Senators and Reps. about this Bill. Thanks Ken Mayes

    • john bury

      Ken, My mission is to the American people to support us Vietnam Vets. Blue Water Navy especially needs support. We need those Bills passed.
      See my story at: Agent Orange Battle Rages

  • john bury

    Does anyone have pictures of AO barrels being carried onboard a US Navy Commissioned ship? If you do, e-mail

  • john bury


    Also go to: GEBHART: Thanks to Bury, Blue Water sailors near

    • Ken Mayes

      John: read your story. Great stuff>>>>>>>>>> The guys in Congress must not want any of these bills passed. Thay started out with Bill 812, Then it was resubmitted as Bill 1629, and now it was introduced on Dec, 8, 2011 By U.S. Reps Chris Gibson (R-NY),Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Tim Walz (D-Minn.) and Denny Rehberg (R-Mont.) As Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2011 Bill # H.R. 3612. Have tp check in with Congress every other month to see if they are going to get this out of committee. Thankd Ken Mayes

  • DAB

    I served with a fighter squadron aboard 2 carriers a few of our f4`s bingoed into Hue were fixed up enough to get them back to the carriers and then we tore them apart and put them back in service. I suppose sitting on the side of the runway that AO was totally removed from these aircraft before being brought back to us. I suppose the the sicknesses and diseases that my shipmates are suffering is BS. I agree with several of the comments made, we can send all kinds of money all around the world but taking care of veterans the proper way is not part of the program. I was a blue water sailor 4 tours in the Gulf of Tonkin 65-69.
    DAB upstate NY

  • dennis breh

    I served with a Fighter squadron aboard the Coral Sea and Ranger 65-69 4 tours, we had a few aircraft forced to bingo into Hue VN. When they were repaired well enough to be brought back to the ship we would strip them down and use the parts on other aircraft to keep them flying unill we could get parts from the US. While these aircraft were being readied to return to the ship they sat on the side of the runway,from what I get from the VA these aircraft must have been totally washed and AO was removed from them prior to their return to us? I was treated the same on my return to the US as most of us were treated at that time. My shipmates and myself are suffering from the same illnesses that our Brothers that had a boot on the ground and yet there is a question wether we deserve the same treatment? I was proud and I am still proud that I served but when we send billions around the world our government wont help the ones that made this country safe so that they could govern the land. Oh well looking back they let the cowards that ran to another country back into the US with open arms.

    • Neil Doebler

      What Squadron? I was with VF-21 65-69. We had 4 MAC F-4’s from land based squadrons bingo in for repair. I have 4 of the presumptive illness’s and still fighting for help. Served aboard the Midway & Ranger during my 4 tours. Tell me there wasn’t any chance we were exposed. Go ahead government, drag your feet, we’ll all be dead soon and then your off the hook….

  • Rev Carole

    My husband proudly served on the Uss Hornet, 1966 to 1968.

    Last year, he nearly died, because of a virus in his body. Tests showed he has Multi Myeloma a blood & bone cancer. My husband does not fit the profile of the disease except for, he is 65 and Male. One of the causes of Multi Myeloma, is exposures to pesticides, MM is listed as a Agent Orange illness. My husband is not allowed to take the physical for agent orange. because he is a blue water vet. Ask his VA Drs how did he get this disease, “We don’t know “. We are sure it is a result of Agent Orange But proving is going to be difficult.

    • MARY

      My husband served on the USS Hornet from 1965 thru 1966 He has naropathy in his legs. He has had blood vessels breaking in his brain causing short term memory loss. His hands shake none of this runs in his family yet our beloved VA refuses to add blue water sailors. The Austrailian government proved long ago that the water desalination(not sure of spelling) made agent orange all the stronger in the water supply they drank and bathed in. Funny I thought the US was a smart nation but Australia seems to be smarter and more up to date.

    • E B

      Rev Carole I served on the USS Hornet during the same period your husband served. I have three of the eleven deseases that are presumptive of AO expousre…….perpheral neuropothy, diabetes, and prostate cancer. I do not believe this is purely coincidental. However the DVA has denied my claim. I intend to refile based on recent articals in this and other forums.
      Since we were shipmates at that time would it be possible to communicate with either your husband or yourself? Thanks, EB

  • alvin e thomas

    I am a 1965-66 Blue Water Navy Veteran who has suffered 4-5 Ischemic Strokes and 1 Ischemic Heart Attack. I have had about 6 claims in since 1997 to the Wisconsin VA. All have been disapproved. Yet I still here the VA executives talk about “presumed infected” by agent Orange. I was sent to the Minneapolis VA Hospital by the VA for a benefits examination. The Doctor approved me for “Service Connected”, and the Wisconsin VA still denied me the claim! Does the US Congress know how the VA operates? I have high cholesterial and all the symptoms of Ischemic Heart, but because I am Blue Water Navy, disapproved.

  • Antonio Salcido

    my ship the USS GEORGE K MACKENZIE WAS NEAR TO SHORE IN SUPPORT FIRING OPS. We docked in Da Nang and carried amunition and poweder from land to our ship. Our destination was north Vietnam operations. I haven’t seen anything about the Mackenzie contamination with agent orange and pesticides. Check the ships logs they’ll concure with what I said.

    • how do you get the ships logs? I was on the George too! I have type 2 diabetes and had a radical prostectomy. I’m trying again to get Agent Orange disability, but was told the odds of winning was slim to none. I served on the ship during 1968 to 1969. My name is Gary Barnes, I was a store keeper. Can be emailed at

    • Kenny Hinkle

      Antonio Salcido , I was aboard the Mighty Mac for 33 months , 1969 thru 1972. I found your picture in the 72 cruise book. I am seeking proof of boots on the ground. I was a radarman named Hinkle.

  • Larry J.

    Just a thought,most of V.N. vets are getting up in age,mid 60s early 70s if the gov.can wait a few more years they can be sure that they will not have to pay for A.O. So the ideal thing for the gov. to do is keep turning down the Vets.and let us die off ,problem solved,its really a sad thing but the monies they save can go out of country and help others who could care less about the U.S.

  • Robert Erhard Sr.

    THE VA does not honor The International Organization Of Medicine >IOM REPORT minor Rev. 3 Jan. 2012 (yes, minor Rev.3 Jan.2012).The VA does not honor H.R. 812 accordance to include…more than… The Blue Water Navy.The VA does not honor S.1629 that provides compensation amd health care…accordance H.R.812. The VA does not honor H.R. 3612…CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY STATEMENT of December 8,2011…read…to THE VA…that CONGRESS has the power to regulate THE VA and it’s OFFICERS. I am not a lawyer. However, to break the LOG JAM…it looks as if…US suffering Veterans have to file criminal charges against THE VA OOFICERS for willfully defying to be regulated BY CONGRESS. Please ,at least, read THE IOM REPORT>minor Rev. 3 Jan.2012. Thank you for letting me put another LOG IN the fire place.

    • Robert Erhard Sr.

      To find THE AGENT ORANGE IOM REPORT minor Rev. 3 Jan. 2012, look for sub title Blue Water Navy. THE REPORT revises/clarifies prior reports.

  • Fred Overcashier

    How many tears and endless lives must pass for Blue Wave sailor. Are we not Americans? Most Navy sailors volunteered to defend their country and was not drafted. My heart is torn also for I have done my duty for our country serving 3 years and 2month Viet Nam aboard the USS Constellation CVA64 from 1967-1971 I have had 4 marriages, heart problem. PTSD, suicide, and now have leukemia the worst kind. My debt to the VA has caused garnish of my social security Battle Creek has cause this issue and refuse to work with me and now the VA from Ann Harbor want I have been open for ways to pay this debt but in my heart I know all this debt is from my service to my country. All from service rendered. I maybe canceling all ties ( medicine and appointment)with the VA I am sure my cancer will return with out help but the choice is the VA and the government I wrote the open check for. I cannot swallow my pride with this action. My government has deprive me of living by the choice made. I am a blue wave sailor sad to say so my honor is denied and I am refused treatment which I cannot afford .I need help soon for my life is short with out meaning

  • Tim Smith

    I am a (so-called) “Bluewater Navy” veteran whose ship operated along the “gun line” in the coastal waters of Quang Tri province, RVN, during 1972-73. While such duty also included visitation in Da Nang harbor, I did not go ashore. On the other hand, in addition to showing the Vietnam Service and Campaign medals, my Form DD-214 also states “Served in Vietnam” in the “Remarks” box (number 30). Given that the VA’s criteria for presumptive AO exposure include “service in Vietnam” and “Vietnam veteran” status as defined under federal law, I have often wondered how the VA would handle my AO related claim if I became ill and decided to submit one. A denial on the basis that I did not “serve in Vietnam”, or that I am not in fact a “Vietnam veteran”, would seem defy all logic and common sense. But let’s face it, brothers: The stark reality is that VA policy on this issue has been driven and dictated by budgetary (i.e., “money”) issues and little else. Politicians are all for starting and fighting wars, they just don’t want to pay for them.

  • Ronald McKenney

    I was on the USS Isle Royale.We was on the coast of Chu Lai Jan 01 1967-Feb 05 !967.I have type II diabetes plus postrate cancer.Why we had to boots on ground is beyond we drinked the water showered in it.Plus the wind carried AO everywhere

  • Peter Foley

    I was aboard USS PASSUMPSIC AO107, made many trips to gulf of tonkin, ship also transported A.O. I have type 2 diabetes, hypertension, neuropathy in upper and lower extremities. Have been fighting with the VA for seven years and all I hear is no because you are a blue water sailor. How do they think that crap got there. It’s really a shame how this country treats its Vietnam Nam vets. If I would be like this, I would have ran to Canada 45 years ago instead of volunteering to defend my country for 6 years.


      Lou Siliano
      Served aboard USS HALEAKALA A/E-25 we carried agent orange 1966-69 and unreped it to other ships. We had leaking barrels and tossed them over the side. We used rags to clean-up the spillage. Wish you all luck, We need to all get togeather and get this rectified. TOGEATHER WE STAND DIVIDED WE FALL! LOU

      • Dennis

        I was exposedin Subic Bay cleaning leaking drums of AO. Can you give any info?



      • Dennis

        I was exposedin Subic Bay cleaning leaking drums of AO. Can you give any info?

  • smoke52

    I am a Blue Water Navy Viet Nam Vet, having served on the USS Oriskany CVA-34. The first tour was in “71” the second was “72-73” and the third was “73-74”. We were off the coast of Danang on January 27,1973 and met up with the USS Enterprise CVA-65, USS America CVA-66 and the USS Ranger CVA-61. This was to mark the end of the Viet Nam War. There are pictures of all four carriers in formation along wth DD’s,DE’s, CLG’s.
    Back in 72 I came down with a rash that is centralized all over my back.I will get this rash behind my ears and around my eyes. At first the VA called it a Severe Acne Form Dermetis, I still have this so called rash today. It never went away. I found out thru the America Legion that in 2007, the VA changed the diagnose as Eczema. This rash looks like a zit resembling a blackhead. But it’s not a blackhead zit. When I squeeze it,It’s like an explosion. In 2008, I was diagnosed with Type2 Diabetes.
    I am now told that because I’m a BWNVNV,I’m not considered a Viet Nam Vet because of boots on ground.

  • smoke52

    Yes,the Navy Pilots were instructed to try and make to open water. But a few did make to open water but were not rescued. If they didn’t get rescued, they were listed as “LOST AT SEA”. Where is there ” HONOR”

  • alvin e thomas

    All of you Big war time Vets who had boots on the ground should shut your mouths about the Navy and others who did’nt have boots on the ground. We all have one thing in common. We were GI’s idiots. Just caused you suffered more than another guy during Vietnam, makes no difference. We are all in the same boat now! So far I have had 4-5 strokes age 53 and 1 heart attack age 65. You big mouths are doing just what the government wants, devide and conquer.

  • Kenneth Morrow

    Shout out to all those sailors that served aboard the Uss Everett F. Larson dd-830 1968-1969. We were in the company of the 23 squadron. We were exposed to a lot of dangers that the sodiers in the bush were not, such as the collision at sea in june 1969 between one of our sister ships The Frank e evans and the Austrailian carrier melbourne. The front half of the Evans went down immediately killing over 70 sailors. I respected my friends that were in the Army and Marines , Coast Gaurd, Airforce, but we never knock each other. To this day, we still have a lot to talk about and share in our expeirences in the greatest military in the world. I have nothing but respect for all the comments here and for those that just can’t seem to see that we were one i don’t know what to tell ya, but the USN is as much a part in prtecting this country as any other branch and infact during those periods were the main transportation to get everyone to their destination.

    • smoke52

      Hear! Hear!
      I was on the USS Oriskany and our tour of 72-73 we collided with a ammo ship, the USS Nitro,while arming with 500lb and 1000lb bombs.

  • Robert Erhard Sr.

    Today is July 22,2012. The Department of Veterans Affairs does not honor The Institute of Medicine’s latest report of Vietnam Veterans exposed to agent orange. The IOM agent orange REPORT minor rev. 3 Jan. 2012 updates and/or clarifies the report made May 2011. To find it on the internet, type in IOM agent orange REPORT (Blue Water Navy) 3 Jan. 2012 (yes, 3 Jan. 2012).The report indicates that The Blue Water Navy (and others) served in the worst of situations, conditions, and atmosphere exposed to agent orange including disatillation of water for drinking.Please help to bring this information to the attention of all fellow Vietnam Veterans.

    • Tina Wilkinson

      My husband was on the USS Walker (DD517) and made 3 tours to Vietnam. He was in the Da Nang harbor, recovered bodies of pilots that were shot down and killed, used and drank the water that was taken from the contaminated water, and now suffers from several known diseases of Agent Orange. If anyone else is going through this please respond back to us at He has now had a heart attack, stroke, diabetes II, Neuropathy, as well as other things. These are the men that fought for our country. Lets take care of them instead of rebuilding the countries that have killed our men.

  • LRK


    • Jason Gorton

      Welcome to the new world order.

  • Raymond Humphrey

    My ship, The U.S.S.Hooper DE-1026, is not on your list. I don’t know the exact date however, in 1967 we docked in DA Nang, had chow with the CB Units who were stationed there, in their mess hall and, we were docked there twice. The first time, we picked up some sort of communications gear which sat on the fantail in a crate. The second time, I believe we returned said gear. Also, we patroled the Tunkin Gulf. I can’t acquire a ship’s log and, so, I have no proof of such anoccasion. But, we were there. Humphrey,R. EMFN 1967.

    • John J. Bury

      Raymond, Your ship the USS Hooper (DE-1026 is on the list of 713 ships in Vienam waters. Ray Mabus, Secretary of the Navy statement to The Honorable Daniel K. Akaka dated letter June 17, 2010. Deck Logs are available. Call (301)837-3510, Navy archives reference section. They will need specific dates.

  • John Bury

    If the VA claims that Blue Water Navy (deep water) were nOT in contact with agent orange, then why are thousands of us who served on board ship in the combat zone within 12 miles of the coastal waters in the South China sea are getting sick with diseaeses that are on the VA list of presumptive diseaeses? Tests hav prooven tere in dioxin in those waters. The IOM report says it was there. The Australan veteran affairs say it was there. How many scienctic tests are needed? Hundreds of tests have been made, the language is all the same. It was there. Navy ships transported the stuff. What more evidence is needed?

    • Allen Mit5chell

      I served aboard the USS England DLG-22 for two tours in Vietnam. Now I have cancer but was told that my ship was not affected by agent orange. My last tour ended in June of 1966.
      Allen Mitchell BT1

    • Reggie Hicks

      Hello John,

      I really get tick when I hear this crap about Blue Water Navy. It’ s not a blue water navy or a brown water navy. We have a United States Navy. The VA use that distinction to divide and mislead for their own agenda. The 2009 IOM confirmed that Blue Water Navy Vets and Boots on the ground Vets share the same presumption. In the 2011 Report IOM said that it was not enough evidence to determine.

      • Mikey

        Reggie Hicks ?? OUTSTANDING comment.. Thank You.. it is true, to divide is to conquer, why do they want to conquer our honorably discharged Veterans is beyond me !! Its Sick.. the increasing poor treatment and denials received by our Veterans from the VA could possibly deter dedicated servicemen and women, from defending her.. Change VA, and have Congress fulfill its promises made to our military..

    • Andy Nelson

      Dear John,

      You will always be my “Hero”
      I pray for You

      Andy Nelson

  • Bill Penrod

    John, check with the Red Cross they may have some record of when and how they contacted you concerning your emgency leave……………….

  • Sarah

    I am a journalist currently writing a piece on Blue Water Vets and the Agent Orange Equity Act of 2011. If you are a veteran willing to share your story, please feel free to contact me at

    • Dennis Anderson

      I was on a Blue Water ship, the USS Hancock, 1967-69. I was found to have Diabetes Type 2 about 6 years ago. No family records of having it.
      I have not yet been able to stabilize the condition. I did get the VA to qualify me for care and meds but not yet for compensation. I was offten on the weather decks during combat operations and had flight skins for helo photo needs. We did get in very close to shore on occations.

      Currently not fully available but possibly after Feburary.

    • James W Sobotta

      I am a BWNV on the USS Oriskany. 40 years ago I came back with a so called rash that the VA called a severe acneform dermitis, that was back in 1982, 4 years ago the VA says I have typeII diabetes. Now I am told that I can’t file a claim because of “BOOTS ON GROUND”. If you want to hear more,let me know thru this site.

    • Don Adams

      I was stationed aboard the USS America (CVA-66) off the coast of Vietnam in 1971. I don’t have any idea whether or not I was exposed to Agent Orange, but I have developed diabetes type 2 and kidney failure in the last 5 years. I am the first person ever in my family to develope diabetes.

    • J59 er

      i would like to talk to you you can contact me my name is john

    • Bill Schweizer RM3

      Hi Sarah, I served Blue Water Sailor 1970 – 1973 Tonkin Gulf both ships, while being a Brown Water Sailor 1972 – 1973 _ USS Carpenter DD-825, 1970 _ 1972, then USS Schofield DEG-3 1972 – 1973, I have been trying to get the VA to add both ships to the two list: Brown & Blue Water, I have had 2 cancers removed from the back of both ears, diabetic type II, and heart problems

    • leon

      Sara, i was on a distroyer 1968 planeguarding aircraft carriers when our squadron captain went to shore to see westmoreland along with another captain. As we sat at the base macong delta for 12 hours waiting for them to get done playing chess and smoking cigars, or whatever they did. We caught (drift) from planes dropping bombs close by. I have diabetes and hep-c dont know if i have a claim though. What do you think?

  • alvin thomas

    Lets all take un to court! The VA doesnt give a s—-. Obama lied to the vets and American Legion, they don’t care what Vietnam Veterans are going through. All the politicans can do is monitor, how we are getting screwed. $-5 Strokes and 1 Heart Attack per the VA Hospital!!! The VA sure does’nt care! I have had claims in since 1967!!!

  • gweggumz

    I was stationed aboard an LPD in 1977. It is documented that the ship staged defoliation missions in Vietnam. The ship stored agent orange during the war and I strongly believe it contaminated and remained in the drinking water. I have been battling non Hodgkin’s lymphoma as a result.

  • Chris Oathout

    My husband did 8 yrs. Navy, passed this March. Served on the USS Ranger from 1972-1974. VA denied his claim from AO, also PTSD (THE VA WAS TREATING HIM FOR HIS PTSD) for he was not in Combat or in danger from a terrorist attack. They paid for his sessions, but denied he has PTSD> go figure. All because he was Blue Water Navy. THANK YOU ALL FOR SERVICE. I am still fighting for his rights and WON’T give up till he gets what he DESERVES!!

    • tim white

      Same here … VA Psychs said I have PTSD but VA powers that be said I don’t have it … even though I’m being treated for it … LOL … and I was on the ranger in 1974 … witnessed several events, including SAM hitting helicopter when I came on flight deck … and we did go through tonkin gulf on the way to Hong Kong when Nixon resigned … we had to show force off nam … was in combat zone and I reinlisted then … got no tax reinlistment bonus being in combat zone … still fighting VA … blessing to you is my email address

    • James W Sobotta

      We were together on Jan.28,1973 along with the America,Enterprise. I was on the Oriskany. If you want the picture of us off the coast of DaNang,You can contact me at

      • dave laug

        Hi …My name is Dave Laug andI served in the Gulf of Tonkin and South China Sea in 72/73…Worked w/ virtually all the CV/A’s as an OS/ Radarman on my ship DEG 3 Schofield during early 73 and remember the Oriskany and Ranger quite well….Recently diagnosed w/AO linked Non Hodgkins Lymphoma and was treated for an unnamed but what appears to be an early stage condition at Balboa Naval Hosp later in 73… I was medevac’d to Cam Rahn Bay for an injury possibly by a helo from one of these 2 ships.(can’t recall)..I am advised my Mil records are incomplete and am trying to establish a better timeline to fill in the blanks per my VA rep’s request…I know it’s a long shot but I’m Hoping you might have knowledge of working w/my ship or helo activities/ schedules etc that might help piece this together this picture for VA case review? Thanks for your time and consideration….D

    • Jim Oliver

      Chris, I was on Ranger 3/72-1/76 and on Yankee Station 1/72-5/73 plus in 74. We blew a complete machinery room up, shot down our own helo, ate staring at 500 pound greenies on the forward mess deck, watched buddies lose body parts and more. Did we transport AO? We took on everything else under the sun so it would be a good bet that AO was among the list. Our “Gray Eagle” airlines CODs went to shore and who knows what they brought back.

  • Vic

    I took a military trasfer plain to okanawa to wait for a ride to the uss handcock. while at okanawa i served on several datials that cleaned and help load berrals of agent orange onto trucks. some of these berrels were opened and or leaking. Is tiere anyone out there that might have been on those work details. This was like at the end of 69. sept or october.

    • JOHN

      VIC I was stationed on Okinawa 1965-1966 camp Sukran I was sprayed w/a/o twice ,unladed ship ,55 gal. drums some not marked, some had triangles and danger painted on them some had colored rings around them I cant remember if they were orange or yellow HOPE THIS HELPS YOU MRDREAMER46@AOL.COM

  • Guest

    1.USS WALKE (DD-723) firing close to shore 1965 – 1967.
    2. Fire in BT area July 1966
    3. Removal of lagging after fire in BT section.
    4. Type II diabetes, asbestos confirmed in lungs.

  • Smed

    My Husband, Chuck Kuhn died 9/2/12, ischemic heart disease, suddenly. He served aboard the USS Okinawa 4/70–1972 the ship went to Cam Ron Bayh. I have two performance reviews while he was on the ship, a buddy letter that included a ship journal with photo and name. I am looking for proof of “Boots on Ground.” coming out of a widows fog I am determined to fight for his entitlement and yet still a newbie at gathering data….I am looking for one shipmate named ‘Bruce” who paled around with chuck. Please email me at if you served on the Oki. Thank you for your kind attention.

  • roberto

    i was aboard on one of ddg during Vietnam war,they awarded me 70%disability,but due to hypoglycemia attack,i was so scared to seek employment due to make story short,i reopen my case several times to obtain 100%disability because right now,i am taing insulin dosage 5/day,2x lantus[am and pm]3x of novolog shot b4 each meal.I went to all this va’s recommended doctor every time i reopen my case,but to no avail,in fact the last time i went for physical,va had awarded me 50% my hearing,now,my va doctor will not initiate anything in order to help me acquire the benefit’s.any suggestion where to go will surely be appreciated in order to help me obtain what i’m fighting for.

    • James W Sobotta

      Hey Roberto,
      I was on the Oriskany from 71-75,did three tours. In 72 I came down with a rash that covered my whole body that looked like “ACNE”. In 82 the VA called it a severe Acne Form Dermatitis,which I still have today. 40 yrs of this and it never went away. In 2008 VA says I have diabetes and I take the same insulin.
      I was told I can’t put in for disability because of the VA’s stance of “BOOTS ON GROUND” . Wish I had some answers for, I am in the same boat.



    • Dennis

      I was at Subic Bay in Feb., 1967 getting exposed at the naval base cleaning up leaking AO drums. I”m looking for info, documents or witnesses that AO was definitely in Subic Bay.

      • Ken

        Dennis: I was in Subic Bay aug 24 to Aug 29 of 1967. Was on MP detail. We were policeing the dock and warehouse areas picking up paper and debris. Ruined my shoes because of that stuff. I’m trying to get AO comp but getting denied.

      • mikey

        Dennis, getting the bird from the VA in reference to Subic Bay !! following info has NOT helped me yet, but maybe with your info you can get somewhere.. look at: DOD Law Subic Bay by Fordham Environmental Law.. Volume 6, Issue 1, 2011, Article 1. Try GAO/NSIAD Reports: 88-4, GAO/NSIAD 87-87, GAO/NSIAD 87-45, GAO/NSIAD 90-11, GAO/NSIAD 86-60 (Executive summary by the Inspector General, GAO/NSIAD 92-51 (Financial obligations) … These reports went to Congress.. also try the WHO, and Stars and Stripes.. “Toxic mess Subic Bay” 02 Feb. 2010.. Also two Marines have won claims reference to Subic Bay, maybe soon they will recognize the rest of us who were stationed there.. Best of luck to you, if successful, remember me. Mike

      • Larry

        I was there also in 67 68 what warf were you cleaning. I remember seeing barrels of it down at the ammo warf (I forget the name of the warf)
        go to “NZ admits supplying agent orange during war” it was sent from new zealand to subic bay. good luck and keep me informed

  • James W Sobotta

    We have comment on this blog for some time now. I received this article from the VVA by e-mail. This kinda slaps us BWNVV in the face.

    “In an updated article in The Washington Post by Steve Vogel on August 8, the Department of Veterans Affairs has reversed its denial of Agent Orange-related disability benefits for an Air Force veteran who flew on potentially contaminated C-123 aircraft after the Vietnam War, a decision advocates describe as the first of its kind for veterans seeking compensation for postwar exposure to the toxic defoliant.
    Paul Bailey, a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel who is gravely ill with cancer, received notice Monday that he would receive “a total grant of benefits” for cancer associated with his 1970s-era service in the United States aboard the aircraft, which had been used to spray the toxic defoliant during the war”.

  • Ken

    anyone on here ever a teletype repairman???Need your help, PLEASE cpntact me. Ken

    • Bruce Hester

      I was a CT on the Oklahoma City and had to repair our tty sometime, why.

  • alvin thomas

    I was US Navy Fred T Berry DD 858 Vietnam Veteran 1966. I have had 4-5 Ischemic Strokes and 1 Ischemic Heart Attack and Cornary Heart Disease per the Minneapolis Veterans Hospital and Service Connected per there compensation Doctor. Yet the Wisconsin VA won’t service connect me! I have 60% short term and 40% long term memory losts, and service connected by the Hospital! We fired Gun Fire Support daily, once for 30 consecutive days, bloating our gun barrels due to bad ammo. We were within 2- 10 miles of Vietnam while on Gun Fire Support of Vietnam and Cambodia. I was 53 years of age when heath problems began. Have gone to many Vietnam Veterans funerals, exposed to Agent Orange. All x-Navy people should read the Da Nang Harbor Report on the internet!

    • Bob Gorrell

      I served on the USS Coral Sea CVA 43 in 1966-67. I”ve had 6 heart attacks, 4 heart failures, and the front of my heart is dead. I am diabetic, blind in one eye and low vision in the other, bilateral upper and lower neuropathy, use hearing aids and last December I was told Merry Christmas you have prostate cancer. On top of all that I have PTSD. I have filed numerous claims all with negative results. I keep fighting but it feels like there is no help any where. I feel for you buddy. If you want to talk drop me an E-Mail. Take care and good luck.

  • Bettina

    My brother is a Vietnam vet who served on several aircraft carriers. What are the names of some of the carriers where the c-123’s with AO were located on? He has recently been diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease.

    • jackie

      Find out the name of the carrier and then just click on the list of ships that were near or had men go ashore..
      I just found this site today.. I hope it helps ya..

  • william Bucasas

    I served aboard the U.S.S. Constellation 1967 to 1968. We did a lot of troop support off the coast of South Viet Nam. I recently completed my chemo and radiation treatment. Now I’ve found out we don’t qualify for Agent Orange exposure.I wish these people in Washington would figure this out. Also thanks to our old buddy George W. Bush,. When he and his buddy Cheney were elected they decided that Blue Water sailors didn’t qualify for these benefits. Not only did they loot the country they shafted us veterans.

    • Sharon

      My husband served on the U.S.S. Constellation as well. Same years.
      He had heart disease and always a rash, finally cancer called him home in 2010. I fought for a long time, we started when he was dying of cancer.
      Same question all the time, Did he set boots on the ground? Funny how Australia, who fought with us, is giving A.O. to their blue water sailors after a study to find that they were actually exposed to A.O. quite a bit. When they filtered the water, the A.O. sank to the bottom thus they were drinking it and showering in it. Yep, blue water sailors in America got the shaft. I discouraged my Son as much as possible about enlisting in the military. Pack of lies and no thanks for it.

    • kj mayes

      Sorry to hear of your problems. I have the same, taking 21 meds per day and on 4 diffeerent inhalers,have IHD PTSD and a whole lot of other diseases. I was on the USS Intrepid in 67-69. The VA denies everything. I am getting a lawyer to fight for me. He goes to Washington for hearings of what to do with us veterans fighting for comp. A;lso a new legislation will be coming out for us Blue WaTER vETS HR 969. Ken

  • robert gieringer

    I have type 2 diabetes from agent orange was on the Robert k hunting ton dd781 I keep being turned down for this when will the congress and the senate realize that all who was on ships off from Vietnam was exposed to agent orange I guess they are waiting for us to die off first we drank cook bathed washed our close in the water that was containing agent orange I plead for all of us thtat a bill will pass to help us thanks you

  • mac

    served in viet nam nov-1967-april 1968 on uss mauna loa
    type 2 diabetes for 10 years
    prostate cancer 1999, recurance 2007
    esophagus cancer 2013 still recovering
    neuropathy hands & feet
    back troubles and the list goes on.
    applied for compensation 2012 no go.

  • bart iannaccone

    I was stationed aboard as 19 in guam May 1970 – Dec 1971, I was a duty driver .I made many trips to Anderson a f b each day to get personnel,equipment for submarines,and the mail 2x each day. I was there during the west coast dock strike, the 1 st thing I put on my truck was toilet paper for a submarine that couldn’t deploy without it.I returned to Anderson a f b to load more supplies along the side of the main air strip,where they pushed the air freight off the runway. I made many trips there( side of air strip ) they made a clearing 100-200 ? Feet away from the air strip and loaded it up with store keepers to sort out what went where,I think they sprayed that along with the access road a well. ( how do you make a clearing so fast in a tropical environment so fast ? ) we who were exposed to agent orange while stationed at guam demand to be adjudicated now! Remember justice delayed is justice denied.

  • Raymond Williams

    I made 2 cruises on the USS Cacapon AO-52 in 1965 and 1966, we got sprayed
    with agent orange in 1966 when we went up the Mekong Delta to refuel some
    swft boats mine sweeper and Pt boats, I would like to knowing what the VA going to do about my VA claim

    • Charlie Hummel

      yep we did

    • Robert Erhard

      Read (be instructed ) by the Jan.2010 Compensation & Pension Bulletin Policy (211) for ships that operated on rivers and deltas…granted the same presumption of exposure…as the Brown Water Navy. Also see June 2010 ADDITIONAL Information on Vietnam Naval Operations. The Nehmer Trainining Guide Feb. 2011 Revised is a must for the VA to follow. Another mudt read is: Congressional Research Services / Statutory Presumptives by law clerk Nichols Oct. 2010. It’s a must read for also exposure outside of Vietnam. <> The anchorage area in Da Nang Harbor is within “an” ESTUARY made up of the Cu De River and the Han River. The “ESTUARY” is within Da Nang Harbor within the geographical boundaries of Vietnam , the ESTUARY sheltered from the open sea. All ships that went in and out of the anchorage area,of Da Nang Harbor should have the same presumpyion of exposure, as The Brown Water Navy that operated in rivers, deltas, canals, ESTUARIES, etc.

  • Reynaldo M. Radovan

    I was aboard the USS OKINAWA LPH-3 (1973-1975) deployed to the Vietnam coastal waters twice with the US MARINE’s amphibious assault helicopter units and the battalion landing teams.We deploy the Marines aboard their helicopters to the shores of Vietnam and recover them back to the ship.Some are wounded and some did not make it back.The last deployment we had with the Marines was the evacuation of Cambodia. The Marines brought back aboard the ship the refugees, from locals to VIP’s of Vietnam and also several dozen of Vietnam Helicopters in which eventually we have to push them overboard due to the load capacity of the ship was overloaded. Marines are In and Out the ship,from and to the shores of Vietnam, whatever pesticied they were exposed of, they brought back to the ship and of course the sailors that they eat and sleep together aboard the ship were also exposed to the unknown pesticides. The VA don’t have the criteria on how to recognize these exposures to the AO. There are so many sailors have the symptomps of the AO, they are sick just like the Marines but not recognized as AO exposure. We ask the Legislatives to please review these issues and not to deny the sailors that were exposed to the AO indirectly.

    • mikey

      Nice report. Stationed aboard USS Okinawa 1971, docked CamRahnBay, Marines and helicopters on and off.. Marines aboard all the time.. had cancers two times, five heart attacks, two aneurysms.. VA ??? out – to – lunch, lights are on, no one is home. They Do NOT care.. at least for people aboard the USS Okinawa.. Sick.. Read about a person who committed felony, theft, received 6 mos., drug rehab, and had representation ?? definitely had better treatment than honorably discharged Vietnam Veterans represented by the VA !! go figure.

    • kathleen

      My Husband served on the USS OKINAWA LPH-3 from 1967-68 (RM3)
      the ship was off shore in the DMZ zone. We applied for Agent Orange benefits and were at this time denied. As you stated the Marines were IN and OUT the ship from and to the shores of Vietnam being exposed bringing back contamination to the others. We will fight But we need help if you have any information that would lead me to someone who can help

    • bernard frazier

      I was also their on the USA mobile Lka 115. I’m marine and also been denied my claim. Must so boot on ground.. I’m been fight for over 4 year now. And I getting sick and tired.

    • william LaRue

      My name is Bill La Rue, I was a Marine between 1972 and 1975. I was station in Okinawa. I The VA will do nothing for me.

  • neal courtney

    I was on the uss advance mso 510 from 1969-1970in viet nam we watched them drop agent orange of the fantale,we drank the water bathed and cooked with it.we could see land but we didn’t have boots on ground.received after 10 years of dealing with the va I received 80 percent.6 months later the va took 40 percent back stating there has been a erroneous mistake made.i guess if they
    keep denieding our claims some of us wont be here.the united states is the #1place to live.butt treat the military like#2

  • neal courtney

    whats wrong with the government .they make it sound so good .join the navy and see the world.1 was over in nam I turned 17 years old did what I had to when I need help denied the government is more worried about changing the Washington redskins name.when thousand of vets die evert day.if it wasn’t for the armed services going over to viet nam .mabey they would of comeover here.rember what happened in hawaiay,

  • Tootsweet,Why Even Bother With Congressman Or Senator.OR EVEN OUR PRESIDENT? Its Money In Their Pockets And Feather In Their Caps To Deniel Of Vets And The Claims,Iwas On The USS LYNDE Mc CORMICK DDG8 Charles Cooley Was A Close Friend And They Jerked Him Around Took His BenifitsAway But Had To Return Them? I Havent Ben Able Contact Him I Think He Has Already Passed If You Were On The McCormick64-65

  • Ron Graus

    I was on the USS Passumpsic and we were on inland waters off coast of North Viet-Nam and South and I personally watched Helicoptors shoot Rockets and Missiles at Viet-Nam that it kept me awake at night… But our ship is not on the Inland Waters.. WHY

    • Ron Graus

      I am Ron Graus we wasn’t in the Inland Waters …. We were “Blue Water Navy” off the coast of Vietnam… Sorry about the mistake!!!!

  • Kathleen

    Can anyone help me get the ships deck logs for the USS OKINAWA LPH-3 from 1965-1968? The VA claims this ship was not in the waters. We have our WEST PAC 67 book with landings but they said not good enough. My husband has lung and other diseases been denied. There are other sailors who have past away for AO. that was on his ship but no claims was filled for them either.

    • Mike

      On board Okinawa 1971 CamRahnBay provided evaluation stating such.. VA STILL finds excuses to deny me any comp.. VA does NOT care..

    • Idmtmedic

      I also have a question. My father was one of the pilots spraying agent orange out of his C-130 and he died at 67 with heart attack, prostate cancer, skin cancer. Had triple bypass two years before passing. Died in 2000. I don’t believe he filed for anything outside of hearing loss. Any claims that can be made for our family? Way too young in my opinion.

      • whiskyman

        Your mother should be allowed to draw a widows pension from the VA. Get in touch with the service officer for your area,or see if there’s an agent in the local Court House. That’s where I signed up for my claim,you will need your fathers TD-214 file. I hope you have it,or he had it recorded at the Court House. I have mine recorded thank God cause I’ve had to have it many times through the years.

  • RobRod

    For many years now I have been after the VA to take action on my claim due to a back injury received while under fire and breaking out ammo tor a 102H in 1969. I bent down to pick up a projo canister while carrying another over my left shoulder and felt a painful sharp pull in my back. but I knew I had to carry them to safety. It seems that all my medical records at that time were lost or because of some fire they had, my paperwork was not available when my back was injured. Six years later during one of my appointments while I was being reevaluated for higher disability, a very helpful doctor advised me to find one of my buddies who had been on the same detail at that particular time to write a letter stating that he was a witness when I injured my back. He said that that was ample enough to prove my case. I did that, but it took me a while to track any of these 3 guys down. By the time I reached any of them, one had just died, the other was mentally incapable and the third even till today I am still having problems finding him although I have all of their SS#. I am 100% T & P Vietnam Veteran already. I filed for disability in 1973 and received a 10% rating; after continuous fighting for my rights, not until 2000 did they finally increase my disability; it took them 27 years to take action. But only with the help of God & Congressman Cito Rodriguez is what helped me out. Of course my back injury was not part of that increase and until this day, I am still fighting it. Can anyone help me with my situation?

    • whiskyman

      If you’re 100% disabled by the VA then you can’t go any higher. You’re drawing tops already. So adding your back injury to your claim would accomplish nothing.

  • Kayla

    My father was on the USS Ogden ship that went to vietnam and docked there got off the ship to go tell our men that the war was ending and he was to start recruiting people back home, but the VA is screwing with us, my dad had multiple disorders that are directly linked with agent orange but the VA is just jerking us around. My dad died in 2004. We’ve been trying to get into contact with the guys he served with but we have had no luck.

  • mikey

    Any AIRMEN stationed at Clark AB in 1970 out there ?? Interested in what aircraft was used at Clark, by MAC in 1970, for flights back to CONUS.. I appreciate any info… Thank you…

  • robert nelson

    my name is Robert nelson and served aboard the uss wainwright dlg 28 during years 1965 1968 and now in my later years find all the problems with my health and the great gov that sent us there now gives us no answes and no help and I know there are meany of us,who do I see,,,who do I need to contact about agent orange and the things that has been long lasting effects of the or from the Vietnam war,,we were in the Tonkin gulf on the uss wainwright dlg 28 and our sister ship the uss fox home phone no.205..362,,1603…ask for bobby

  • robert nelson

    anybody serving in Vietnam during the years 1965/1968 on the uss wainwright in the Tonkin gulf,,,,,,i was your cook call me 205,,362 1603…don’t laugh,it was an important job for moral,,,love all of you

  • meanlittleboy2

    contact me?/larry pinkerton uss iwo jima lph-2 Vietnam 66-67

  • Barbara Simpson

    My husband served on the USS Endurnce in Vietnam. While he did not dock there his sghippatrolled theses waters. These young men showered in this waters of the bay, swam in them. Does not everyone know that when a pesticide is used it leaches into the streams and waterways and then goes to the coastal waterways. why does the Va keep denying these sailors benefits? My husband has diabetes, has had a small stroke, and has neuropathy.

  • Bob Lundin

    I served aboard the USS Virgo AE-30 from 1969 to 1971 and also served on the USS Racine LST-1191 from 1971 to 1973.. The Virgo sailed from the Phillipines / Subic Bay into the South China Seas (Gulf of Tokin,etc) unwrapping Air Craft Carries, Destroyers, Heavy & Light Cruises & Coast Guard Cutters with ammo and bombs . Subs for Nuc-Weapons . Enter the war zones numerous times (combat pay every time we enter ). On the Racine we went up the Saigon River to unload a company or more of Marines and Half Track troop movers , etc. I left the navy in Feb/Mar of 1973 .. I have both blue water and brown connections. Also under the recent ships added to the list of approved ships there is an AE ship entered . Why not the Virgo and also LST
    is among the ships ID”s on the accepted list. How do I get a copy of the deck logs from these ships ? Please let me know . I have Diabetes and Sleep Appena ..