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Contact Colin McNickle (412-320-7836 or

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Friday, March 8, 2013, 8:57 p.m.

The 112th Congress failed to pass a law for Vietnam War veterans. The law would have afforded VA benefits for all U.S. Navy veterans serving in Vietnam.

New House Bill HR-543, The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act, was introduced to the 113th Congress by Republican Rep. Christopher Gibson of New York. The bill, if passed, will afford VA benefits to all U.S. Naval personnel engaged in the Vietnam War who served at sea without having boots on ground for Agent Orange exposure.

In submitting a VA claim for Agent Orange exposure, the veteran must show proof of Naval service in the territorial waters of the Republic of Vietnam. In addition, that person must have a medical history for one or more acceptable diseases recognized by the VA for exposure. A copy of the veteran's DD-214 must be submitted with the VA claim.

We veterans need help from the American people. We need public support for action. We ask you to urge your members of Congress to co-sponsor the bill. Without public support, nothing happens.

Additionally, visit and in the search box, type “Agent Orange Act;” follow the page down to the title and sign the petition.

John J. Bury


The writer is a Vietnam War veteran who served in the U.S. Navy.

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