Veterans Day and Mesothelioma

Each year on Veterans Day, Americans honor the approximately 22 million veterans in the country who have served in the armed forces. More than a million of these men and women have served in two wars, and more than 100,000 have served in three, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Since 1954, November 11 is the annual day to pay tribute to and thank these brave men and women who have given so much to their country.

For many, Veterans Day is an excuse to go shopping and enjoy the sales, however for others, the day is about so much more than that. Many communities celebrate with parades and ceremonies, directly honoring the people in their towns who have served. The federal government honors veterans, too, with an annual proclamation from the President of the United States. “From the Minutemen to our post-9/11 generation, these heroes have put their lives on the line so that we might live in a world that is safer, freer and more just, and we owe them a profound debt of gratitude,” President Barack Obama said last year.

But, many veterans still suffer health consequences as a result of putting their lives on the line, even if they returned from service seeming healthy. Many were exposed to asbestos, a deadly carcinogen that was once a commonly used, fire-resistant building material. Asbestos products were used all over the country until the 1970s, including in construction materials used on military bases. This exposure has resulted in high incidences of mesothelioma among the veteran community.

It can take years after the asbestos exposure for mesothelioma to be diagnosed. Many former military personnel may not even know of his or her exposure. Even very recently, military members were potentially exposed to asbestos. For example, in both of the Gulf Wars of the past 20 years, demolition of old buildings in the Middle East could have exposed soldiers to asbestos through the inhalation of toxic airborne fibers.

Cooney and Conway has created a Veterans Guide to Asbestos Exposure, Mesothelioma and Lung Cancer. The guide includes information about potential exposure, as well as resources for those who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma or lung cancer. If you believe that you or a loved one was exposed to asbestos, you may have legal rights. Contact Cooney and Conway, a law firm that focuses on helping those with lung cancer and mesothelioma. 

Jessica McNeil's picture

Jessica McNeil is a Litigation Paralegal at Cooney & Conway. She holds a B.A. in English from the University of Michigan and a paralegal certificate from Loyola University Chicago. You can find Jessica on Google+ and LinkedIn.

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