Saturday, August 1, 2009

The Vanishing Army

No doctor had indicated
"Agent Orange exposure"
as the cause of a Vietnam veteran’s death
– until last week.
On his death certificate,
his doctor attributed
the 65-year-old’s death
to Agent Orange,
among other causes.
For decades he and his family
had been fighting
the Agent Orange battle.
So many guys passed away,
same symptoms as his
but no doctor acknowledged
their deaths’ connection to Agent Orange.
Of late a lot of the guys
have been getting sick.
He gave instructions to his wife
not to pin on his medal bar
when he was placed in his casket.
Others noticed it too.
He didn’t want his medals on
because he would not have been
in this state
if it was not for Vietnam.
In the back of their minds
comrades also know
many of them
will not reach old age.
His passing
is a reminder to them all.
They did not mind going to war
and dying in the hands of the enemy
but to slowly die
from a silent killer
has had a devastating impact
on their lives.

No comments:

Post a Comment