Tuesday, February 15, 2011

‘Never give up': Agent Orange linked to Grass Valley vet's death

‘Never give up': Agent Orange linked to Grass Valley vet's death

“I thought right away that it was related to Vietnam because he developed that spot on his tongue just two years after he got out,” she said.
Justice came in the form of a thick manila envelope from the Department of Veterans Affairs, addressed to Paul's wife, Julia Orlandi. It arrived this past New Year's Eve and the documents inside that envelope finally acknowledged that Paul Orlandi's fatal cancer was directly linked to the Agent Orange he was exposed to as an Army Infantry soldier in Vietnam between 1968 and 1970.

Less than a week after Paul's death, Dr. Evans wrote a letter to the Veterans Affairs suggesting that his former patient had died as a result of exposure to Agent Orange. Paul had already tried to convince the VA that his cancer was related to Agent Orange, but his claim was denied. Dr. Evans used his significant medical background to convince the VA to change its mind.

“This was based on the fact that Mr. Orlandi developed this cancer at a relatively young age and with no significant risk factors for developing an oral cancer,” Evans wrote in that July 27, 2006, letter.
“The peak incidence of cancer of the oral tongue is between 65 and 69 years of age, and he was well under this age (Paul was 56 when he died).”

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