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Agent Orange Breakthrough

June 20, 2018


Thanks to Army veteran Gene Clarke, thousands of veterans may be in line for much needed compensation.  Clarke has discovered documentation showing that veterans may have been exposed to Agent Orange in Korea.  Using the Apple iPad his wife gave him as a retirement gift, Clarke was surprised by all the online documents he found showing that U.S. soldiers who served in Korea during 1967 may have been exposed to Agent Orange.


Now, here’s the hard part for Clarke, convincing government officials that Agent Orange was in fact used in Korea before 1968 in the narrow demilitarized zone between North and South Korea where about 55,000 U.S. soldiers served during the mid and late 1960s.

Clarke is an Army veteran who served in Korea in 1967. If confirmed, his efforts mean thousands of veterans could become eligible for ailments they hadn't suspected were connected to Agent Orange, the highly toxic chemical used to defoliate trees and jungle vegetation to expose enemy troops below.













"There are probably people out there who have no clue why they are sick because they weren't in Vietnam," said Tony DiFrancesco, the director of veteran's affairs for Dauphin County.


DiFrancesco was referring to the fact that many Vietnam veterans are eligible for benefits related to Agent Orange. So are veterans who served in the so-called DMZ in Korea from 1968 to 1971. The eligibility stems from the fact the U.S. government has acknowledged use of Agent Orange in those areas beginning in 1968.


Meanwhile, Clarke about 10 years ago developed Type II diabetes — one of the conditions associated with Agent Orange.


Between 1962 and 1971, the U.S. military sprayed approximately 20 million gallons of herbicides in Vietnam, a tactical operation known as "Operation Ranch Hand." More than half of it was Agent Orange.

If the government extends the benefits, it could mean better health care for the affected veterans and compensation for them, and their spouses, for disabilities related to Agent Orange exposure. Agent Orange has been linked to a list of illnesses, including several cancers, Type II diabetes and assorted ailments affecting the skin, nervous system and organs. 

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James McMahon, 6/9/20

Mr. Clarke, I know exactly what your saying I was in Korea during the early 70's and worked at a unit called 595th Maintenance Co. in ASCOM City. I used to see that stuff ( A.O.) spill on the floors in the barns where it was stored, the forklifts that moved this stuff around would puncture the cans containing ( A.O ) . Oh by the way how come you never hear how this stuff was brought to Korea? It was brought into Korea by ships after it was unloaded from the ships where do you think it was stored? The answer is ASCOM CITY however DOD will never admit this.


Darolyn Flood, 6/8/20

My husband passed recently. He was exposed to Agent Orange and suffered from ALL the symptoms of agent orange, too many to name. It's horrible to see the body diminish that way along with your integrity. Quality of life leaves QUICKLY. I want to thank ALL the VETERANS for their services, don't give up and don?'t stop praying.


Ralph Leidy, 6/6/20

I put agent orange on A-7 aircraft on the USS Ranger in June, July Aug, and Sept of 1974.


Roy Davis, 6/5/20

Have had cancer several other things not cool.


Mike Plover, 6/5/20

I served in Guam during 1965 and 1966 on the USS Proteus AS19 and recently read where they discovered that Agent Orange was used there. We fought a massive fire on the island in the jungle. I have type 2 diabetes that I was not diagnosed with until the late 90's.  I have not heard much about Guam and Agent Orange lately wondering if I could or should file a claim for the diabetes.


Larry McKee, 6/5/20

The VA knows I have been exposed to agent orange.1968 - 1970, they have not acknowledge it on my record. I have type II diabetes, Ischemic heart disease, chronic stomach & intestine problems. I believe they are putting me off till I am dead.


William Miller, 6/5/20

Rated for unemployment, gunshot wounds and hearing lost. But I am being treated for neuropathy, but at 100%.


Richard Torres, 3/10/20

Smelled ordinances dropped and felt the ground shake in Don Ha while waiting for transport back to Chu Li, MAG 13 where the same experience happened when the MAG 11 bomb dump was hit during the Tet offensive. Any helpful stats or info?


Gary West, 11/25/19

What about us veterans that didn't service in Vietnam or Korea but served here in the states where they sprayed Agent Orange and we come down with the same cancers. As far as I know not one veteran has been approved for Agent Orange related diseases.


Albert Baca, 11/25/19

In my case, I served in Korea in 1974 and was exposed to AO by working on C-123's that were used on Operation Ranchhand during the Nam war. I submitted documentation to include a performance report to prove that I served in Korea in 1974; a VA memo that listed dates and places of AO exposure, and a case settled by the Veteran Appeals board in favor of the veteran that showed exposure to AO outside of the Vietnam theater. It takes considerable documentation to win your case on AO exposure.


Melissa Lawson, 11/25/19
My husband passed away June 1 2019. Due to agent orange it is very sad that the VA doesn't compensate veterans better they should be compensated separately monthly besides being compensated service connected monthly they deserve it and there family should be well taken care of when they pass on but there not it is sad!!


Charles Field, 11/25/19
I have a few different things going on with me I believe is the results of my contact to agent orange. My few feel mum and hurt all the time I get skin cancer removed every year. I am sick all the time like want to throw up and get week and have passed out a couple times. Every time I apply for more benefits they just keep refusing me and ignoring my complaints and won't give me the hundred percent I should be getting.


Lloyd Brady, 11/25/19
I was over Korea at the DMZ in 1980 and1982 i was in the motor pool and i have sugar. Copd. Parksons. Lossed feeling in both feet and hands I use a chair to get around sometimes i can walk but for a little time and i am olny 57 YRS OLD SO I WONDER if i will get help from the VA because all veterans that was over in Korea and was exposed to agent orange should get all they deserve because we all are heroes.


Albert Baca, 10/23/19

Kidney cancer needs to be added to the list of illnesses associated with Agent Orange. There are numerous Vietnam veterans who have died from unexplained renal cancer, had either kidney removed or currently being treated for unexplained renal cancer. The research has been done and shows the connection of renal cancer to AO experienced by Vietnam veterans.


Lillian C. Pitts, 10/23/19

Kidney cancer needs to be added to the list of illnesses associated with Agent Orange. There are numerous Vietnam veterans who have died from unexplained renal cancer, had either kidney removed or currently being treated for unexplained renal cancer. The research has been done and shows the connection of renal cancer to AO experienced by Vietnam veterans.


Dennis Borgerson, 10/23/19

I was in Ahn Khe Not only was defoliant sprayed all around our perimeter, it was still coming out of the spray bars of the Hueys as they flew over our base camp on almost every pass. I contacted Rheumatoid Arthritis inside of 3 years of my retuning home I was a combat engineer with B Co. 84th Eng. Btn.


John Maddox, 10/23/19
Why doesn't anyone say that Agent Orange was used in Cuba. I know I handled Agent Orange in Cuba.












Ronald Morneau, 10/23/19
I have type II diabetes, Prostate cancer and high blood pressure. I have proven that agent orange was sprayed in the artillery areas Fort Drum NY in the late 1950s. I was a forward observer in the National Guard and trained at Camp Drum in the early 1960. yet the VA has turned down my claim?


Lloyd Brady, 10/23/19
I was in camp Casey, Korea 1980/1982 I have diabetes, no feeling in hands and feet and have parksons and muscle and joint I am in a wheel chair not all the time I can walk but I only get 30% for hearing loss.


Ronnie Lloyd, 10/23/19
Being a Veteran, why do we have to fight our Government to get these new compensation Programs?  It should be automatic. Some Vets just give up.


Placencio Carmona, 10/23/19
I was station at Saigon twice in 1969 and 1970 with Blind Bat and have been fighting for my benefits for Agent Orange as I have diabetes , skin issues and heart problem with no assistance . I have looked for those in the 21st TAS for support with out success.











Barbara Dunagan, 10/23/19
If they sprayed in Vietnam in 62 then the test plots that my husband walked through each night were AO test plots and that's what killed him.


Charles Field, 6/7/19
I was in Dong Tam and they used agent orange and other chemicals there and I claimed but got nothing.  I have nerve damage in my feet and they just say that it is natural happens. I can't understand why the idiots that run this country get there free hospital insurance but they just let us die and get rid of a payment burden on them.


Gary Remillard, 6/7/19
I was in Camp Casey,Korea from October 1969 thru November 1970.  We made undocumented trips to the DMZ on several occasions.  The VA diagnosed me with 20% left lung calcification and borderline type II diabetes, but never mentioned Agent Orange.


Gart Remillard, 6/7/19
I served in Camp Casey, Korea making several trips to the DMZ on undocumented occasions in 1969 to November 1970.


Terry Buscher, 6/7/19
What about Cuba?  We had a kill zone along the border.


Barbara Wright, 6/7/19
They also sprayed in Korea in 62 also. I have a picture of the test plots that were sprayed and something my husband got into in Korea killed him in 2019. It was either from the test plots or from the nukes.


Melissa Lawson, 5/28/19
My husband is lying in ICU right today fighting for his life due to Agent Orange. I think these veterans and spouse should be compensated a separate benefit if the veteran pass on the spouse should always be compensated.  Its only right for behalf of the veteran served his country.


John R. Morgan, Sr., 10/27/18

None of us had a clue that our government would expose us to things that would be harmful to us. Plus the VA is only in existence to make it appear they care while they deny any exposure even if went up river on firing missions, winds carrying the herbicides out to the ships. That the ships themselves filtered the water we drank, showered in, food prepared and ate and cleaning, etc. They refuse to acknowledge it even when you show proof where the ship was and when they do not put it on the list. Anchoring in a harbor that is surrounded by land on all sides with a narrow channel to enter and exit does not count to them. Degenerative bone and joint disease from service connected diabetes you can have it in your knees but not your neck, whole spine other joints does not count unless they say so. The burden of proof is always yours and the VA helping with your claim is a farse to only cover up what the VA pulls on us veterans. Good Luck with it all you'll need it.


Jack DeWalt, 6/21/18

Even if you WERE in service in a sprayed area, the VA has yet to use that "presumptive" aspect for unexplained illnesses - you can only be eligible for benefits if your illness is on THEIR list !! I was denied because mine wasn't !?!?!?!?


Angel Pineiro-Lopez, 6/20/18

Timothy, to be connected, neuropathy has to be a consequence of your diabetes. If you are diabetic, apply for a compensation on your diabetes and latter connect the neuropathy as a consequence of the diabetes.


Gary Stahlman, 6/20/18

Sprayed and betrayed!!!!


Hugh D. Hatmaker, 6/20/18

I was stationed in Viet Nam from May 63 till May 64, Spent a 90 day TDY there in Jan, Feb and Mar 68 (during thr TET Offense. I have never registered for Agent Orange. I retired from the Air Force as a MSgt in Apr 76. Thanks, Hugh.


Walter Quigley, 6/20/18

I'm 71 and can't imagine how or why I have not shown symptoms of Agent Orange related diseases as, in 1968, I spent time at Bin Hoa/Long Bin, Viet Nam and Saigon. My permanent duty station was Vung Vung Tau, Viet Nam at the 36th Evacuation Hospital. My work station was located 100 yards from the dust-off helicopter pad where the Agent Orange was stored and I spent many, many days , perhaps 50 or so, bathing in the ocean waters off of the Vung Tau, Viet Nam coast where many rivers and tributaries emptied into those waters. I guess I've been blessed thus far. Can anyone, otherwise, explain how I've done as well as I have concerning my health?












Timothy Cole, 6/20/18

I am a Vietnam veteran (1967-1968) and everyone knows the US used Agent Orange in Vietnam for numerus years.  I have been trying to get benefits now for over 11 years, for neuropathy (a nerve disorder) in my both legs. I have appealed numerous times and my case has been Re-maned back to the VA, three times, the last time from the Board of Veterans? Appeals?  Washington, DC., November 2017. So, don't think they're going to just hand benefits over to you, you have to fight with them to get benefits.


Dave Kilgus, 6/20/18

Not everyone exposed to Agent Orange was in Viet Nam! It was used at shore based facilities, mostly overseas; and carried on all types of Navy ships.


William Willoughby, 6/20/18

Agent Orange is slowly killing me, my lungs , heart, legs, etc.