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Takhli RTAFB - Land of the King Cobra
Re: Attention all flightline workers 1972 -1973 474th TFW
Absolutely! Never give up on your claim. You will prevail.
Having the word "Takhli" mentioned on your orders is some pretty convincing evidence that you were there if you ask me. Duhhh! Although there is a presumption of exposure to AO, tactical herbicides or what ever you want to call it, even if you were stationed anywhere in Thailand, the VA still seems to have their wheels stuck on that darn perimeter. One didn't need to to have pulled augmentee duty to have been on or near that perimeter. I don't know how many times I took a "smoke break" off the hard top at the runways edge and many times friends that didn't smoke joined me for the break, know what I mean?!
I'm glad you finally got your process "almost" completed but that sure is a long time..... I guess we all wish we were or are one of the lucky ones who gets the right person looking at the claim right out of the box. Either way, I'm not going to quit on this claim. I should get some information back by June.
I originally filed in October or November 2011 and got a denial back in 2012. I didn't fight back at the time but after looking at everything they sent me I can't believe some of the stuff they got wrong. They even claimed there was no evidence I served in Thailand. That and several other things were wrong. I finally got my military records a few days ago and there was copies of my performance evaluations and my orders stating Takhli, Thailand. Just looks like someone didn't even look, just stamped "reject" and moved on to the next stack.
Well, good luck and keep in touch.
Gerald, I am happy to hear the VA is implementing a new appeal process and I hope it works better than the old one, my appeal took a tad over 4 long years to resolve which is an insane amount of time to wait for an appeal judgement. My judgement came in a week or so ago. My claim was originally filed in January 2012, that's 7 years total so far. Best of luck with your claim and thank you for your service.
How long ago did you file your claim and did you get just your first denial letter recently. I wonder about the waiting process because I have also filed a claim and have been hoping that since they have been granting a few of these my luck could be better. Filed in October and according to e-benefits they expect to have a decision around June this year.
By the way, if you have not been watching on the 19th they are supposed to be implementing a new appeal process which "might" get quicker responses. What we really need is for congress to give us presumptive status like they have the veterans who were in country. Something like the Blue Water bills they have not gotten sent through yet.
I was a crew chief also at Takhli. I crewed Red Tail 67-101. 474OMS. Early Agent Orange flights for "Operation Ranch Hand" originated out of Takhli. If you remember, the entire perimeter was a "Dead Zone" especially the area near the trim pad. Also, in addition to the nightly "fogging" for insects (what the hell was that stuff) the came around regularly and sprayed the tops of the revetments (dirt filled) to kill the weeds. What was that that they used then??? There are lots of unanswered questions. I personally have THYROID ISSUES. I wish you the best. Keep us advised of your battle.
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