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Va & Claim Denial


Chuck75

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  • HadIt.com Elder

This one is a real lulu!

A vietnam vet has been repeatedly denied AO connection for various disabilities. The reason quoted is that the ship he was on "was not in vietnam in 1969".

Dantes information available on the web from a gov web site actually shows a statement to the same effect, and is grossly incorrect for 1969.

The ship in question was re-named from an LSMR class ship to an LFR class ship in early 1969. The actual name of the ship and the hull number were not changed. Evidently the navy historical research in or before 1991 missed this. Further, the ship was awarded combat citations and awards for it's participation in the vietnam war during 1969, including a citation from sec nav.

Evidently the VA stopped checking when it found the dantes info, or the person doing the research would have found that the ship's deck logs (official records) show that the ship was actually in vietnam. Just to make matters even worse, the vet is not computer literate, and does not own a computer.

Naturally, the vet is located in one of the VA regions known for low vet compensation.

A high percentage of other crewmen have AO related disabilities, and have been sucessful in obtaining some level of compensation.

It also may turn out that the VA is disregarding a written signed statement from the captain in command of the ship that states that the ship and (others) that the ship was in fact in vietnam during 1969.

How can this sort of nonsense be corrected in a rapid manner. Is it cause for a CUE?

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This is obviously a Blue Water Navy veteran and the recent CAVC Haas decision will help his claim- however there is a Stay proceeding on all Navy Agent Orange claims.

They will not begin to adjudicate these claims until the stay is lifted.

He certainly should make sure that the VA has copies of all of his evidence.

What ship was it?

A CUE claim can only be filed on a final decision. It sounds to me like he is still in the appeals process.

Haas gave detailed information as to his exposure to Agent Orange while on board ship. I posted the Haas decision in another topic.

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I wanted to clarify the Haas infomation with a link to NVLSP- the lawyers who won Haas:

http://www.nvlsp.org/Information/ArticleLi...svnicholson.htm

They stress that the veteran should have the VSM or the AFEM on their DD 214 as well as a presumptive Agent Orange condition.

This is the Stay info on Haas from USVI:

http://www.tpromo.com/wwc/viewtopic.php?t=256

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  • HadIt.com Elder

The ship was the USS White River, LSMR-536, later LFR-536 after the change. The ship was an amphibious ship with shallow draft that allowed it to go close inshore or even in the delta and rivers. It fired approximately 60,000 5" rockets with a maximum range of six miles at targets in vietnam.

The ship periodically rearmed at various naval support locations in vietnam, about every two or three weeks.

The vet in question was on board during 1969. I was on the ship in 1968, and was able to prove from my service record that I did in fact have "feet on the ground". The vet I referred to is not that fortunate.

The ship captain's written signed statement gives the following dates and locations. This is evidently also being ignored by the VA. At present, the ship related group on MSN has copies of deck logs for some dates in 1968 only.

Cam Rahn Bay An Thoi

27 -28 Mar 68 15 May 69

3-4 April 68 17 May 69

13-14 April 68

19-20 April 68

25-26 April 68

18 June 68

24-25 June 68

3-5 July 68

13-14 July 68

28-29 Nov 68

7-10 Dec 68

3-4 Jan 69

30-31 Jan 69

14-15 Feb 69

I wanted to clarify the Haas infomation with a link to NVLSP- the lawyers who won Haas:

http://www.nvlsp.org/Information/ArticleLi...svnicholson.htm

They stress that the veteran should have the VSM or the AFEM on their DD 214 as well as a presumptive Agent Orange condition.

This is the Stay info on Haas from USVI:

http://www.tpromo.com/wwc/viewtopic.php?t=256

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Yeah- she won ten campaign stars in Vietnam service-

This is probably the same info you got:

http://www.navsource.org/archives/10/06536.htm

She was redesignated-as you said- into Inshore Fire Support ship (Jan 1, 1969)

Not only did this ship go into brown water but that designation aalone- shows how close she was to Vietnam" soil" and probably had mud on her bow most of the time.

The Haas decision does not require "one foot on land" but does want the AFEC or VSM on the veteran's DD 214.I am sure he has the VSM.

Has he formally filed the claim yet?

Are his disabilities on the AO presumptive list?

Here is a White River web site:

http://groups.msn.com/WhiteRiverShipmates/historypage2.msnw

It is a shame that he doesn't use a PC as there could be buddies at that sight to contact.

He should make a short statement detailing the ship's history in inland or off shore waters for the time he was aboard and ---

BUT make sure you and any other AO WHite River Navy veteran check out this site!!!!!

http://www.usswhiteriver.com/WR_Web/Super_8.html

"Rear Admiral William Carlson, Capt. of the White River, will write a personnel letter for any shipmate who needs help with the VA proving ao exposure. Contact me and I will send you his email address and home address as needed.

THE

MILITARY RETIREE MEDICAL CAREBROKEN PROMISE ISSUE

Captain James F. Jordan, USN, Retired

164 Hunters Mill Lane

Evington, VA 24550

434 534-6863

1 August 2006

From: Captain James F. Jordan, USN, Retired

To: Veterans Administration

To Whom It May Concern

Subject: Presence of USS White River LSMR-536/ designated LFR-536 after 1 January 1969 in ports of the Republic of Vietnam During my tenure as Commanding Officer.

The USS White River was in port on the following listed dates and places:

Cam Rahn Bay An Thoi

27 -28 Mar 68 15 May 69

3-4 April 68 17 May 69

13-14 April 68

19-20 April 68

25-26 April 68

18 June 68

24-25 June 68

3-5 July 68

13-14 July 68

28-29 Nov 68

7-10 Dec 68

3-4 Jan 69

30-31 Jan 69

14-15 Feb 69

8-11 May 69

21-22 May 69

13 June 69

During these routine port visits we moored at a pier for fueling operations, repair work and routine supply functions. All personnel would get ashore for recreation or personal business. Agent Orange was used throughout Vietnam and we were often near the areas sprayed.

The ship was in the area and provided close gunfire support during Agent Orange Spraying Operations in the Bo De River Mouth on 5 December 1968. The ship entered this area again on 8 Feb 69 in support of Swift Boat and MSF Operations.

I may be contacted at:

164 Hunters Mill Lane

Evington VA 24551

434 534-6863

James F. Jordan,

Captain USN, Retired

Edited by Berta (see edit history)
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  • HadIt.com Elder

Several members of the web site are trying to help the vet. I am aware of the information you mentioned. The vet does have disabilities that are on the AO presumed list. (And others) A quick check of crewmwmbwers data shows that a realitively high percentage have AO related problems. To add insult to injury, the VA soes not seem to recognize that "brownwater navy" existed as a unique class of service, and lumps navy veterans under the "offshore" and "blue water" categories. It's important to note that the VA's statements in Hass show that they did and do not want to comply, and that the offical position taken was that any navy veteran should have to prove "feet on the ground" (Even those that served in the inshore waters, rivers, and deltas of vietnam. This is somewhat puzzling, since the vietnam rivers carried and carry to this day runoff from AO contaminated areas.

All of that aside, the VA has taken the stance that when a ship is tied to a pier or in some cases such as LSTs, run aground, crewmembers do not routinely go ashore. Further, they seem to be willing to ignore written statements from comissioned officers and others when it suits them to do so. The VA region in question is one that is located in Ohio.

Another issue seems to be that incorrect information from a government source is given more weight than correct information from other sources. It would seem that it is in everyones interest to get the DANTES info corrected.

A quick check of various ships (LSTs, LSMRs, etc.) showed that thousands of navy veterans served in the "brownwater navy" The ships were small, not in current service, and not given the attention in the official histories and records given to the larger "blue water" ships. It's really quite sad.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

How in the world could a sailor in the Brown Water Navy not go on Vietnam soil? Were not these guys back in the rivers and canals where tons of the AO was dropped? I think south of Saigon there was a river whose banks got the most AO. This is just about the government trying to save a buck. It is a slap in the face of every veteran. Did not John Kerry serve in the Brown water navy in the swift boats. We had a guy here named Mike who was in the Riverine force. You see how the VA is going to fight the ruling about Blue Water Navy near Vietnam. They have just drawn an arbitrary line in the sand( or water) to justify not paying for AO diseases.

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