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Editor:

I am writing this letter in support of all the Vietnam Veterans who have been diagnosed with Squamous Cell Carcinoma (skin cancer).

The Department of Veterans Affairs and many dermatologists say that this type of cancer is caused mostly by sun exposure and does not meet the qualifications for awards for disabilities. Many Vietnam veterans were exposed to large amounts of sun during their tour in Vietnam. The sun, combined with the humidity, was present most of the time. These factors, created in time, were a hardship, causing their clothing to deteriorate to the point of rotting off their bodies.

These conditions exposed their bodies to large amounts of sunlight. These brave soldiers would spend days, if not weeks, in the bush, hilltops and rice patties, fighting for their lives and the people back home.

It has been said that 70 percent of these soldiers tested have this very aggressive cancer and can spread quickly, if not caught in time.

These soldiers deserve better and should be respected for the challenges and hardships, not only to themselves but the loving parents who sent them off to war.

It took our government many years to confess that “Agent Orange” caused a lot of health problems and the same should be looked at as it pertains to this terrible cancer. Squamous Cell Carcinoma should be a concern to all of our public representatives.

Ivan Puckett

Madison