Friday, November 5, 2010

Veterans Day AGENT ORANGE Recognition 11/11/2010 Minnesota

Veterans Day AGENT ORANGE Recognition
To recognize, remember & honor all who have been affected by Agent Orange

Date: Thursday, November 11, 2010
Time: 1:00 p.m.
Where: Fort Snelling Officer’s Club (395 Highway 5 and Post Road, Fort Snelling, MN)

"I died in Vietnam, but I didn't even know it."
Paul Reutershan (1950-1978), founder Agent Orange Victims International

Veterans and their families, the public, the media and VA staff are invited to an event in honor of Veterans living with the effects of Agent Orange and in remembrance of those we have lost.

Only one-third of all U.S. Veterans who served in Vietnam are still alive and in another five years, they too may be gone. Vietnam Veterans are dying at an alarming rate; 390 die each day. It has been said that a World War II Veteran will bury the last Vietnam Veteran.

Many chronic illnesses and cancers have been linked to Agent Orange (a chemical defoliant used during the Vietnam War) and just this past month three additional illnesses -- Parkinson’s disease, B cell leukemia, and ischemic heart disease -- were added to the Agent Orange presumptive list for which Vietnam Veterans will be eligible for compensation. All Veterans who served in-country were exposed to Agent Orange, as were many who served off-shore, stateside and at distant bases, such as in Guam or Korea, handling these toxic chemicals. Many Veterans remain unaware that the illnesses they suffer from today are linked to their military service of four decades ago.

The children of Agent Orange Veterans have also been significantly affected. More than 65,000 children of Vietnam Veterans are listed on the national registry of birth defects and a disproportionate number of children and grandchildren of Agent Orange Veterans suffer from severe illnesses and chronic health conditions. With rare exception, these children, who are the legacy of the war in Vietnam, do not receive any VA or government health assistance, creating additional hardship for Veterans’ families.

While steps are being taken to improve Veterans services, Vietnam Veterans and their families continue to have concerns about the quality of VA care, the backlog of Veterans’ disability claims, and the lack of health care for our children and grandchildren affected by Agent Orange.

This event is intended to promote awareness about Agent Orange and the concerns of Vietnam Veterans. Those affected by Agent Orange will be encouraged to share their stories.

Contact: Cheryl Fields 651-696-9501

Cheryl is the widow of John E. Fields who served with the first Marine landing divisions in Vietnam and succumbed to Agent Orange related cancer January 15, 2007. In loving memory.

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