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About EricHughes

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  1. Can you contact me about the agent orange at Sheppard please

    1. GBArmy


      Hi Taztammy, welcome to Hadit.

      I doubt if you will get a response from Eric as he has not been active for many years.  I suggest you start a new posing, as this one is old and will be confusing. Ask specific questions and I also suggest search this forum for Agent Orange.

  2. The VA is under no obligation to grant Service Connection to a claim that has not been "Continuous". That said, you need to focus on establishing that your condition was indeed continueous. First question: Have you submitted a statement in support of claim relaying to the VA what you relayed to us here? Namely that you where self medicating, and self treating? Second question: Is there someone that you have known closely over the period of time from separation to present that can verify your history? This person need not be a doctor or other expert. But if they are not an expert then they should only state facts that the lay person can observe. For example.... They should not say, "I believe the veteran was depressed". Rather they should state WHY they believed that the veteran was depressed. Example: Veteran would go through periods of time where he would sleep for X hours of the day......
  3. You can file for anything. But I'd call it pyramiding. So odds are the VA will as well. Also, consider the risk that they will lower you rating if you file.
  4. All known releases of Dioxin (Agent Orange) are required to be reported to the EPA. I suggest that you file a FOIA with the EPA seeking all known dioxin releases at Sheppard AFB. Then be sure to give the results of your FOIA to the Vietnam Veterans of America and this forum in addition to sending the reports to the VA.
  5. You need to hire an attorney if you don't already have one. Otherwise you will just end up back on the treadmill.
  6. Dan, I don't think this is the correct place to discuss SPN/SPD or RE codes since they do not concern the VA in a -official- capacity. Though, I've heard stories about them having an impact in some VISN's. If you have questions on SPN/SPD codes your best place to start looking for answers is at www.veterancourtcodes.com That site is dedicated to the kinds of issues that you are asking about. As for the advice I personally have for you..... You are very angry. That is understandable. But this happened over 33 years ago. You would be wise to let go of the injustice of the -past-, such that you can focus on the injustice of the present. The SPD code KDB is for a "Hardship" discharge. There is nothing negative there. It is the correct code for a hardship discharge. The RE-Code 4E indicates a non-waiverable bar to reenlistment this is typically given for medical reasons. Frankly, after 33 years, and given your stated medical condition, I don't think you are going to try to reenlist so again, nothing negative there. Neither separation code merits "Better" treatment. But they don't indicate that you should get worse treatment either. I've known horror cases relating to SPD/SPN codes. This isn't one of them. The Reenlistment Code RE-4E is a blessing in disguise. You can use that to document in service diagnosis of your injury for the purposes of service connection.
  7. NOVA attorney's are generally Pro-Veteran. They will often take cases prior to the NOD pro bono. I however distrust attorneys that are not NOVA, or that practice "Elder Law" and do VA claims work on the side. The later are often selling services to transfer assets to artificially qualify for VA pension. While legal, I don't think that is the congressional intent.
  8. Your particular situation screams for the help of a NOVA advocate. It will require a lot of time to properly develop, and the NOVA advocates typically have smaller case loads than a NSO from a veteran's service organization. Thus, they have the ability to provide the time and attention your case requires. What I think John is getting at is that you need to EITHER show that the pattern of depression continued since active duty. Or that the current depression is related to a service connected condition. It will be easier to show a secondary cause at this time. However, if your depression is recurrent and part of a continued pattern of recurrence that started while on active service -as in a bi-polar- diagnosis then you could get direct service connection. One thing to consider is do you have any service records that are new and material to your claim? If you do, a good advocate can get the VA to get an earlier effective date. One place to look is to request via FOIA the daily desk logs for the dates surrounding your AWOL, and Court Marshal. They may have evidence in them that are not part of the VA record that can drasticlly help you. Your advocate should have info on how to request them.
  9. True. But if the ro has attributed your symptoms to PD you are better off looking for something on the smr that the no or ro missed that supports your diagnosis than challenging the nurses report. If you need to challenge the nurses report see my thread Daubert v Merrell Dow in the claims research forum.
  10. First question: What did you specifically get into trouble for while on active duty? Second question: How long ago where you discharged? Third question: when where you diagnosed with these illnesses?
  11. First the VA is allowed to use there own experts. Second, personality disorder discharges are very hard to overcome. To have any hope of winning you need to prove your symptoms are not do to a personality disorder. That is hard to do. I will try and post more once I get home since typing on an iPhone is clunky at best.
  12. What is the typical turn around time for VA to accept an application for Chapter 31, and set a first appointment?
  13. If it is in a medical record, it probably is "SURG" for Surgery.
  14. Very helpful. Myler v Derwinski was exactly what I was looking for.
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