Subject: Agent Orange from service in the Mekong Delta
Corry was in the Mekong Delta, at anchor from 10/23/1968 to 10/27/1968 with a river transit each way in and out. Sometime during our presence there, doing Gunfire Support (NGFS) in this 3 Corps area, we were over sprayed with Agent Orange or it was in the air around us and drifted to outside surfaces of the ship. Two enlisted shipmates have contracted cancer or early diabetes which can be related to their exposure to Agent Orange. Those crew members who worked on the weather decks during this timeframe were most likely to contract symptoms and should be checked out by their local VA Hospital location. I'm advised that the VA will try to disclaim that destroyer sailors could not be exposed to Agent Orange because of our usual "blue water" missions. They should point to the NGFS Records on our Corry Website, which is an official government source, that places the ship in South Vietnam Provinces in the Mekong Delta of 3 Corps during the dates mentioned above, so their claim will not be rejected. They should make a copy of that 1st page to take with them when they make a claim or want to be checked out. Likely rates exposed are SM, BM, ETN, ETR, IC, and FT. Even Supply rates and all Seamen should be checked, as they stood lookout watches. RMs should be checked in case they may have cleaned antenna insulators on mount 51 or amidships. Snipes and Officers should be okay as they spent most of their time in the ship's interior. I've been checked and show no exposure, even as OOD and CDO during those times. Guess I didn't rub my exposed arms or hands on many or any outside surfaces.