RAMRODS

Second Infantry Regiment
 
 
 


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Mahlon McLean
Reply with quote  #1 
Back in the early '80s I was sent to Albuquerque, NM to the Lovelace Medical Center as part of a study of the effects of Agent Orange. The study was canceled by the VA mid-stream so I don't know what conclusion, if any, they came to. However, what struck me was the fact that half of the men that were there when I was were from the 2/2. The other half were men who had served during the Vietnam era but had not actually been to Vietnam. After three days of medical and psychological tests a doctor gave us each an exit interview about our results. He told me that the dioxin level (the bad stuff in Agent Orange) was 500 times what would be considered normal.

It had always seemed strange to me that after they had cleared Hwy 13 of the jungle that was near the roadway nothing ever grew back. Now maybe I know why. The bottom line is that I have contracted diabetes and find it almost impossible to get my blood sugar down to a normal level. The VA has recognized that diabetes is one of the conditions that is caused by Agent Orange and if you served in Vietnam and have it, they will presume that it was caused by your exposure to Agent Orange. I am now getting 60% disability and the VA is paying for my diabetic care. I thought I would pass this on because there may be others who were effected but may not know we were exposed to Agent Orange on a regular basis.

God Bless You all.
The Saint
Reply with quote  #2 
Mahlon, I too serve with the 2/2. We were the first group of the 2/2 to arrived at Lai Khei in 1965, yes, I have type 2 diabetes. I have it under control by doing exercises and taking medicine also follow a very strict diet. You said that you can't control it, check with the dietitian and follow her instructions-- it will worked. Hope you get better.
Take care.
The Saint.
B co 2/2 1964 to 1967- Vietnam 1965 to 1970.
rick
Reply with quote  #3 
thanks for the heads up.
i have suffered liver damage ... hep c and so forth. i knew it must be agent orange but i could not document it.
The Saint
Reply with quote  #4 
Rich, you need to contact your Veterans Rep at the county office they may help you, when you got there bring your DD form 214.

Explain to them your situation.
Good luck my friend.

The saint.
rick
Reply with quote  #5 
Saint,

thanks, will do. i have a 40% rating now for tinnitus and ptsd, so it shouldn't be hard to establish. i didn't know hwy 13 was defoliated from agent orange. looking back i guess it was a real "DUH" situation since they sure weren't using bulldozers to keep a field of fire along the road.
thanks,

rick
Tom Copeland
Reply with quote  #6 
All,
 

The 1st Infantry Division operated in the one of the heaviest Agent Orange sprayed area in Vietnam.  This is well documented, and the VA Office should have this on file.  When I filed with the VA for my diabetes it was a slam dunk.

 

I started out on Insulin and 4 pills a day and though diet and moderate exercise I am off the insulin and down to 2 pills a day and the diabetes is in control.

 

Tom

Luther Patton
Reply with quote  #7 
Tom you are so right. More Agent Orange was sprayed in Third Corp, BRO area, than any other place in Viet Nam. And there is a lot of evidence to prove just that.
Luther Patton, Black Scarf's 67-68  
John Kerins
Reply with quote  #8 

Mahlon,

 

I took part in that study at Lovelace. First there was a half hour telephone interview and then a follow up one. Next thing I knew I was asked to go to N.M. for the VIETNAM EXPERIENCE STUDY. When I got there and ‘reported’ in, I was told that study was over and I was there for the AGENT ORANGE CONFRIMATION STUDY. I nearly poopooed in my pantspants!

 

That morning I ran into two guys from the 2/2. That afternoon I ran into two guys from my platoon! All in all, about 1/3 of the fellows in my group and the group before me from the 2/2. Since we could only remember going through one area that had clearly been sprayed, we figured the government was stacking the deck. Then Johnny Nelson from 243 said, “I don’t remember anyone pushing any lawn mowers around those Thunders. We were probably eating, showering and sleeping in that sh*t.”

 

He may have been right, but no one from the 2/2 at the time showed any signs of dioxin poisoning. There was a door gunner who had already been diagnosed before the study and a two poor guys from the 199th Light Inf. Every time the nurse would request the door gunner to stay after a test, she’d also ask these guys from the 199 to stay. The third time it happened they knew they had it too. And they did.

 

Malhon, do you remember how cloak and dagger it all was? They said they would do everything to guard our privacy, (why I don’t know) but there was always the SLIGHT chance you my run into someone you served with. I ran into two guys from my platoon, just missed two others and came across three more guys from ‘B’ Co. Still they did pay us a per diem of $50 in ‘untraceable’ American Travelers’ checks

rick
Reply with quote  #9 
very interesting! i have some aerial photos i got from the national archives of lai khe and thunder 2 taken some time after the final pull out. don't have dates on the photos but they clearly show a lack of regrowth in the area. i am on the wrong computer to upload them now but i will shortly.

rick
rick
Reply with quote  #10 
here is thunder 2, i will post lai khe when i find it.

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rick
Reply with quote  #11 
you have to navigate to the bottom right corner to see thunder 2. i guess the rest is hwy 13.
Saint
Reply with quote  #12 
In 1965 we use to see the C-123 spraying the area west of Lai Khei and to the East. While I was a Door gunner we use to fly into that stuff , my eyes use to burn sometimes...In the 5 years I spend in country I saw many changes around the area between Saigon-Tai-Ning-Dau- Tieng- Ap- Bau- Bang and Lai Khei... In the Delta area south of Saigon in the Ca-Mau and Mi-to, way down south, I don't think that there was much spraying.

Take care and be careful out there.
The Saint.

Charlie Moy
Reply with quote  #13 
Question:

How can I find out where field testing of Agent Orange took place in the states.

In late 1961 ,I believe,or early 62, the 12th took part in a training exercise near Ft. Leonard Wood..

  I remember walking through one area that was barren...almost no vegetation.

I commented to my Sgt. that it was odd with all the lush greenery around,that there must have been a fire.

He said that they had sprayed the area with a new product they were testing,to defoliate the area...to give the enemy no place to hide.

Have not been able to confirm that.

I have searched the internet,left messages on message boards,and emailed the Army and Veterans Administration...nobody ever gets back to me.

I do not have any of the severe diseases like Liver Failure or Diabetes,that I know of anyway.

  However,I have very serious joint problems,without any family history and I get rashes on my arms and neck that seem to come and go without any reason.

Charlie


rick
Reply with quote  #14 
Charlie,

i wouldn't expect you would get any response from the va or army on that. confirming those tests ???? you know how they are.

any way i remember a buddy on my pc (recon 62 at that time) going home with rashes that were so bad that he had puss pockets 2 to 3 inches long on the back of his neck. he was suffering from that problem for a while as i remember, he went to have it checked out and disappeared. they said his rash sent him home. i don't mean to sound omanous but i have never been able to locate him since. but it seems that a severe rash may also be a symptom of the agent orange contamination. ??

rick
Luther Patton
Reply with quote  #15 
Gentlemen, after my return from the Nam, for a while I to had a rash on my under arm that was red that itched like crazy with little bumps.  And no it was not posion Ivy.  But it finally went away. 
At our Veterans out reach office they had a large topo map of Nam with the areas that Agent Orange was sprayed in the Nam. They may still have the book. The map was marked with a black dot or square dot to show where the Agent was sprayed. In the area of Third Corp it was solid black!!!! Now that give's you some idea of how much was sprayed in that area and it also stated that The Third Corp had more Agent Orange sprayed in that area than any other place in the Nam.  But there is a web page that has alot of information about Agent Orange and other Agents that was sprayed in the Nam. Some of you may know about this already but just keyword in the following.
Great site for sure.
Respectfully, Luther Patton, Nam 67-68 BLACK SCARFS

http://cybersarges.tripod.com/AO.html
John Kerins
Reply with quote  #16 

Rick,

 

In Jan 69 both of my arms were peppered by steel shavings scrapped from the cupola of my track when it was raked by AK fire. They were really tiny slivers but before I went home in mid Feb I had hardened sores all over my arms. I think it was a reaction to using gasoline to clean my 16 and .50. The sores were like sunburn blisters but hard as glass. When I got home, I visited a cousin who was a nurse and she won’t let me sit on the furniture or touch her kids. Can’t say I blame her the way my arms looked. But it all cleared up in about two weeks and, knock on wood, has never come back. Funny but when I get a little sun, like now you can see tons of little red marks on my arms where those sores were, 38 years ago.

Daring 40
Reply with quote  #17 
Attached is a map of the spray missions conducted in Vietnam between the years of 1965 and 1971.  This information comes fro the Department of the Army.

Also see the pictures of Agent Orange Barrels taken in Lia Khe in 1967.

In October, 1967, we took down the Ong Dong Jungle (Heart Shaped Jungle).  It was a VC hide out that had been sprayed more than once but the over growth kept coming back and climbing up the tree trunks so we got the mission to ride guard while the rome plows took it down.  Talk about exposure to Agent Orange.

Daring 40

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rick
Reply with quote  #18 
John,

i suppose you could blame it on petroleum products, but it sounds to me like something else. i have been getting oil and gas in cuts and scrapes on my hands all my life and it never caused anything like what you described. i would tend to believe that herbicide had a bit more to do with it??? eh?

Daring 40,

thanks for the map and pics. looking at that map it totally blows my mind.

i wonder how long that stuff hangs around in the soil and such. i hate to think of what it has done to the past two generations of Vietnamese.

it also makes me wonder what new kinds of poisons our boys in Iraq and Afghanistan are being subjected to. have any studies been done about the effects of handling depleted uranium shells ???

i hope i don't come off sounding like a bleeding heart, but sometimes it just makes ya wonder what the $*%$@# ....

rick

PS tank goodness for spill chalk. whit out it i would have two money spilling miss steaks, due you no watt i mean?

Steve DeLacy
Reply with quote  #19 
I also remember during the morning role call the day before our filght home (March '68).  They asked for volunteers to have blood drawn for some sort of study.  Those that volunteered were excused from any details that day.
Few volunteered.  We were all afraid they were looking for some rare disease that would delay our DROS (We didn't trust anyone in those last days)..  I've often wondered over the years, if perhaps it had something to do with Agent Orange.

Steve DeLacy (221)
John Kerins
Reply with quote  #20 
Yesterday I was talking with a fellow involved in Agent Orange research at VA Hospital in East Orange New Jersey. I mentioned Lai Khe and he looked at a computer and said they dumped 81,000 gallons (or maybe tons, but I think he said gallons) of Agent Orange on Lai Khe alone.

So, everyone might want to get checked.
john peterson
Reply with quote  #21 

the va will give you a free check up all you have to do is contact them its one of those things we have coming alltho i'm not sure they like to give up the info to you on it unless they have to!!

Mike Canty
Reply with quote  #22 
I served in the 1/2 from 1967 to 1968. I started in Phouc Vihn and ended up in Quan Loi, before the Ramrod started their Message Board I corresponded with quite a few guys on the BRO message board that had had Kidney Cancer. I was diagnosed in 1991 with Kidney Cancer and had my left kidney removed, the doctor said it is a real slow growing cancer and I was the youngest one he had ever seen with the disease. I have always be lived that the cancer was caused by exposure to Agent Orange as were the guys that I corresponded with. I filed a claim with the VA and of course it was denied because it is not on the registry of diseases that are covered. I also have type 2 diabetes that they are covering.

I'm sure after we are all gone the Kidney Cancer will be covered.

Mike Canty
HHC 1/2 Recon
1967/68
harold w. defibaugh
Reply with quote  #23 

i was at quan loi in 67 to 68. have not developed any type of cancer to this date, but about a year and a half ago i was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. don't know if it was from agent orange or not. both of my parents were diabetic, so my doctor thinks it is inherited. on meds and some exercise and watching what i eat, this pretty well controls it. need to exercise more.

john peterson
Reply with quote  #24 

harold type two dibates is agent orange specific and you can go to the va and get your claim in NOW you'll automaticly be approved because 1 day in nam in III corps were we were is enough to get the job done!! if you haven't already done so get moving and get it done asap its a 20% disability and if you are or have lost feeling in your hands or feet the ante goes up!! don't waste time get it done asap!! many of your bro's will back you on this and back me to boot !!!do it NOW

Roger K Bravo 1/2
Reply with quote  #25 

Pete is right on on this Harold... You were in B 1/2 with me and Diabetes is covered all you have to do is get a claim in and it will be approved... You need to see a rep. (DAV, VFW or county) and they will file the claim for you,,, Most have offices in the VA hospital nearest to you... OKC right ?... You have a compensation check coming to you for this... Get your money, they owe you... !

 

I'm going to be at the reunion in St Louis along with about 8 of us from November Platoon are you thinking about it ?... I know you wanted to be with us before in Nashville.. This year we are going to the big one for the Big Red One... Would be good to see you there buddy...

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