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I am seeking information concerning possible herbicide(s) stored, used and spilled on Asco

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Gopher

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I am seeking information concerning possible herbicide(s) stored, used and spilled on Ascom Base, Bupyong Dong, ROK cira '70-'73.  I believe I have residual problems due to such exposure. Kimpo air bases was nearby and toxic chemicals were allegedly stored in warehouses on Ascom.  I have knowledge of warehouse and further information.  Please direct me to proper post/person.  Thank you. 

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These two recent 2022 BVA decisions show how difficult ( but NOT impossible) that ASCOM veterans can succeed in their claims.
 
This veteran claimed AO exposure due to his service at ASCOM.
 
However the BVA states:
"The Veteran's personnel records document service at Camp Hayes and Camp Casey.  The Board has considered the Veteran's contentions that while at the NCO Academy at Camp Casey, he had training along the DMZ.  The Board finds such a contention credible and consistent with the evidence of record.  As such, the presumptive provisions of section 3.309(e) are applicable.  As prostate cancer, diabetes mellitus, and ischemic heart disease are on the list of presumptive disabilities under section 3.309(e), entitlement to service connection for prostate cancer, coronary atherosclerosis and paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, and diabetes mellitus, type II, is warranted."
The veteran also submitted buddy statements.
The BVA took note of BVA decisions that the veteran also submitted but these were decisions that were only binding on those individual veterans and cannot be used to support similar claims.
https://www.va.gov/vetapp22/Files10/A22021117.txt

 
In part:
"ORDER

Entitlement to service connection for prostate cancer is granted. 

Entitlement to service connection for coronary atherosclerosis and paroxysmal atrial fibrillation is granted.

Entitlement to service connection for diabetes mellitus, type II, is granted.

Entitlement to service connection for erectile dysfunction is granted.

Entitlement to service connection for bone cancer is denied.

Entitlement to service connection for hyperlipidemia is denied."
In this next case :
 
The BVA found a serious procedural error and remanded.
The error was that :
"In September 2017, the Joint Services Records Research Center (JSRRC) reported a search of records from 1969 indicated that the 6th Medical Depot was located at ASCOM, South Korea and that records do not document any specific duties performed by the 6th Medical Depot unit members along the DMZ. JSRRC also indicated that there were no records of 55-gallon drums of Agent Orange being stored or spilled at Camp Casey. 

However, there is no indication in the file that JSRRC investigated the location of the 6th Medical Depot in 1970 (a February 2019 JSRRC response reports the location of the 65th Medical Group instead of the 6th Medical Depot) although the records indicate the Veteran served in the 6th Medical Depot in 1969 and 1970. Additionally, there's no inquiry into the location of the 2nd Infantry Division and whether it was in the DMZ. As this information should have been obtained prior to the April 2020 rating decision on appeal, the Board finds remand is required to correct a pre-decisional duty to assist error. See 38 U.S.C. § 5103A."
"The matters are REMANDED for the following action:

Take all necessary action in accordance with applicable policy and procedure to verify the Veteran's asserted in-service exposure to herbicide agents in Korea, including conducting an inquiry into (i) the location of the 6th Medical Depot in 1970, (ii) the location of the 2nd Infantry Division in 1970, and (iii) whether the Veteran's receipt of hostile fire pay in September and October 1970 indicates he was in the Korean DMZ." 
https://www.va.gov/vetapp22/Files3/A22004984.txt

(It pays, if you served in ASCOM to consider what Camp you were in or training you received, and when, as well as your MOS, in Korea, that might have exposed you to AO.)
 
In part:
 
"The Board also notes that the Veteran has referenced numerous Board decisions in which a different veterans who served during the applicable presumptive period were granted service connection based on service at Camp Casey. Notably, five of the decisions referenced concern veterans who served in the Veteran's unit. Although the findings and conclusions of previous Board decisions are binding only with regard to the specific case decided therein, the Board does strive for consistency in issuing its decisions. See 38 C.F.R. § 20.1303. The Board also acknowledges that the U.S. Armed Services Center for Unit Records Research (CURR) (now the U.S. Army & Joint Services Records Research Center (JSRRC)) responded to a request for verification of service along the DMZ, stating that unit histories indicate that the 1st Battalion, 31st Artillery was stationed at Camp Casey, approximately 13 miles from the DMZ, and participated in field training exercises. It was stated, however, that the unit histories did not document that the 1st Battalion, 31st Artillery performed any specific duties along the DMZ. Although the Veteran's presence along the DMZ cannot be confirmed by the unit histories, there is also no affirmative evidence to establish that the Veteran himself did not go to the DMZ. Given the evidence as a whole, particularly including the lay statements, and in consideration of the benefit-of-the-doubt doctrine, the Board is unable to conclude that the evidence is persuasively against the Veteran's having been present near the DMZ and therefore having been exposed to Agent Orange while stationed in Korea. Having determined that it is as likely as not that the Veteran was exposed to an herbicide agent in service, the Board finds that an award of service connection for prostate cancer is warranted on a presumptive basis. This is so because the evidence of record shows that the Veteran has been diagnosed as having prostate cancer and there is no affirmative evidence of record to support a conclusion that the disease was not incurred in service. According, as the Veteran has prostate cancer and he is presumed to have been exposed to herbicide agents, to include Agent Orange, the criteria for service connection for prostate cancer, on a presumptive basis, are met. 38 U.S.C. §§ 1110, 1116; 38 C.F.R. §§ 3.303, 3.307, 3.309(e).
Also:
 
"The Board acknowledges that it previously found that the Veteran was not exposed to herbicide agents in Korea in an April 2021 Board decision which addressed different service connection matters on appeal. In an October 2021 memorandum decision, the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (Court) set aside the April 2021 Board decision and explained that the Board did not adequately consider the Veteran's lay statements and pictures to determine whether he was directly exposed to herbicide agents at Camp Casey and/or when traveling further north of the camp towards the DMZ. Upon further consideration of this evidence and in light of the other evidence set forth above, the Board now finds that the evidence is at least evenly balanced as to whether the Veteran was exposed to herbicide agents in Korea. As the reasonable doubt created by this relative equipoise in the evidence must be resolved in favor of the Veteran, his exposure to herbicide agents in service (including Agent Orange) is conceded. Moreover, as the Veteran has current Parkinson's disease, and was exposed to herbicide agents in Korea, service connection for Parkinson's disease is warranted on a presumptive basis." 
https://www.va.gov/vetapp22/Files6/A22011016.txt


 
Here, although the Veteran's unit is not one identified as having operated in the DMZ during the qualifying time period, the Board finds the Veteran's competent lay statements, as well supported by the statements submitted by his fellow service members, regarding having to perform duties along, or near, the DMZ to be credible. Further, as noted above, it is undisputed that Camp Casey was the installation closest to the Korean DMZ during the presumptive period and that several of the units entitled to presumptive exposure belonged to the same command structure, the 7th Infantry Division, as the Veteran's unit. The Board also notes that the Veteran has referenced numerous Board decisions in which a different veterans who served during the applicable presumptive period were granted service connection based on service at Camp Casey. Notably, five of the decisions referenced concern veterans who served in the Veteran's unit. Although the findings and conclusions of previous Board decisions are binding only with regard to the specific case decided therein, the Board does strive for consistency in issuing its decisions. See 38 C.F.R. § 20.1303. The Board also acknowledges that the U.S. Armed Services Center for Unit Records Research (CURR) (now the U.S. Army & Joint Services Records Research Center (JSRRC)) responded to a request for verification of service along the DMZ, stating that unit histories indicate that the 1st Battalion, 31st Artillery was stationed at Camp Casey, approximately 13 miles from the DMZ, and participated in field training exercises. It was stated, however, that the unit histories did not document that the 1st Battalion, 31st Artillery performed any specific duties along the DMZ. Although the Veteran's presence along the DMZ cannot be confirmed by the unit histories, there is also no affirmative evidence to establish that the Veteran himself did not go to the DMZ. Given the evidence as a whole, particularly including the lay statements, and in consideration of the benefit-of-the-doubt doctrine, the Board is unable to conclude that the evidence is persuasively against the Veteran's having been present near the DMZ and therefore having been exposed to Agent Orange while stationed in Korea. Having determined that it is as likely as not that the Veteran was exposed to an herbicide agent in service, the Board finds that an award of service connection for prostate cancer is warranted on a presumptive basis. This is so because the evidence of record shows that the Veteran has been diagnosed as having prostate cancer and there is no affirmative evidence of record to support a conclusion that the disease was not incurred in service. According, as the Veteran has prostate cancer and he is presumed to have been exposed to herbicide agents, to include Agent Orange, the criteria for service connection for prostate cancer, on a presumptive basis, are met. 38 U.S.C. §§ 1110, 1116; 38 C.F.R. §§ 3.303, 3.307, 3.309(e)." 
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