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My name is Emily, wife of Frank.   Frank served in US Air Force for twenty-two years, and also served in the Vietnam War two years. Frank suffered with terrible headaches after Vietnam throughout our thirty-eight years of marriage; according to the VA doctors Frank’s headaches came from the Agent Orange Diseases, and received only 20% disability for Agent Orange exposure.  In 1996 in a split second Frank’s headache caused a blood clot to his spinal cord C-3, and the Dallas VA hospital was home for Frank and I for one year and four months.  The doctors gave Frank four days to live, but he lived six-years.  Frank was sent home paralyzed from his neck down; ventilator and tracheotomy in his neck. Frank died three times, in and out of the hospital numerous times, with me being his sole caregiver. I have begged, and plead for everything to get help for Frank from the VA, and I am still begging at seventy-six-years old. Frank died in June 24, 2001 at age 69 years-old, and now VA claims to have lost his records, I am hoping someone can help me get the Agent Orange benefits I believe I deserve. I am asking, and begging again for financial help on behalf of my husband Frank. I have begged since his death 2001, please help!  I’ve sent this letter to Waco, TX Thirty-six times.  I have filled out every form 10-1000 and others no responses in twenty-years.   I will be seventy-seven-years soon.  Again, please help me!

Answer Question



A1:  Go to your local Veteran Service Officer in your nearest city. If they cannot help you, go to your local or State Congressman for assistance. If he does not help you then contact the American Legion Commander in your area. Actually, I would go to the American Legion Commander first and  get them to point you in the right direction. If they do not help you, please contact me at the email address above. Please have copies of all of Frank's medical history and only give them copies, not originals. You can request his Medical history from the Air Force to back your claims. Please do a follow up with me if any of this helps. Thank You Gene.  (GS)  1/21/19

A2:   Contact a service officer i.e, Vietnam Veterans of America, VFW or the AML. If one service won't or can't help, contact another.  This is all done at no expenses to you.  (DS)  1/21/19

A3:  Go to a VSO at the American Legion, DAV, VFW or other service organizations and file a DIC. Take his DD214, Marriage License, Death Certificate, burial costs, medical expenses and all correspondence from DVA that your husband had received. You should have filed yesterday.  (GH)  1/21/19

A4:  Never work with the VA alone..The DAV can help you...should be a rep at any VA clinic or hospital.  (BF)  1/21/19

A5:  Emily, my thoughts are with you. A family member was also a quadriplegic through no fault of his own.

I have read your letter several times. I don't mean to upset you but I have some questions:

VA doctors stated Frank's headaches came from the Agent Orange Diseases, and received only 20% disability for Agent Orange exposure. When Frank was awarded a disability he would have received a letter providing an explanation for the awarding of the disability.

1.Your letter references "In 1996 in a split second Frank's headache caused a blood clot to his spinal cord C-3"

Answer: I am not a physician, but it is unclear how the headache caused the blood clot. It would seem that as a result of the blood clot and the potential narrowing of the blood vessels this may have been a contributing cause to the deprivation of oxygen to the cells and thus a contributing factor to the headaches.

At the time of the blood clot did Frank have a surgical procedure within the area of the C3?

Emily, you stated the VA claims to have lost Frank's records. Are you speaking just about the Agent Orange? Or the examinations associated with the initial diagnosis that Agent Orange caused the headaches and the awarding of disability?

I would meet with one of the county VA reps (face to face) and request the medical records. Have your questions ready. You may want to consider bringing a support person to help you explain your position. Inquire about your options and what can be done.  (SJ)  1/21/19 

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