Veteran: ‘There’s a blessing in dying’ Local Vietnam veteran battles stage 4 cancer of lung, brain, heart

THREE FINAL GOALSRobert intends to use any extra time to accomplish his final three goals, all of which deal with helping veterans.The first is to educate Vietnam-era veterans of the effects exposure to Agent Orange can have on their health. Robert attributes his cancer to his time in the jungles of Vietnam, where he said the particles fell from the sky like rain.According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, a blend of herbicides was used from 1962 to 1971 to remove foliage that provided cover for the enemy. It was stored in 55-gallon drums with an identifying orange stripe and became known as Agent Orange.The VA recognizes multiple diseases related to Agent Orange exposure, including numerous forms of cancer. And it isn’t just veterans who are affected.“Their children are fighting some serious health concerns too,” Robert said. “If your father was anywhere near Vietnam, please look it up, get tested. They are eligible for treatment. It’s not a matter of if they get sick, it’s when. They will get sick, and they will die.”JUMP

Robert Lee Horton recommends anyone who served in Vietnam be tested for the various ailments tied to Agent Orange exposure. He said testing is available for free at any VA hospital, including Topeka’s Colmery-O’Neil VA Medical Center, 2200 S.W. Gage Blvd.“When it kicks in, it goes fast,” he said of the many health problems facing Vietnam veterans and their families.