In binder after binder, Liberty native Cleveland Walters Jr. documents his battle with the Department of Veterans Affairs.
“These are my claim reports from the VA,” retired TSgt. Walters says, thumbing through the pages of one. “Denied, denied, denied. This did not happen to you while you were in the service.”
This refers to his laundry list of diagnosed conditions: anemia, arthritis, borderline diabetes, acid reflux, Parkinsons and a number of other neurological issues.
“I’m in pain all the time,” Walters says.
The illnesses may not seem related, but the 26-year Air Force veteran says they all stem from the six months he spent at Anderson Air Force Base on Guam. Within weeks of landing on the small Pacific island, he says a rash covered his body.
“All of a sudden, this stuff is all over my head, my neck, my ears, my chest, my back,” remembers Walters.
Retired MSgt. Leroy Foster also served at Anderson during the Vietnam War and describes a similar rash.
“I broke out into boils and cysts and open lesions on my body,” describes the veteran, who says he’s now been diagnosed with more than 30 different conditions, including rectal cancer, colon cancer, thyroid cancer, bladder cancer and prostate cancer.
While Walters helped launch…