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The Latest News on                      the Contaminated                       drinking water at 
U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune 

The Department of Veteran’s Affairs rule granting compensation to veterans suffering from illnesses caused by contaminated  at Camp  went into effect. Veterans who served at Camp  for 30 days or more from 1953 to 1987 and are suffering from a service-connected illness are now eligible to receive disability compensation.

“It has been a long fight for these veterans to get the compensation they deserve,” said Senator Richard Burr (R-NC). “I want to thank Jerry Ensminger for his work on behalf of the  veterans and their families. These men and women sacrificed for our nation and have earned this care and support. I encourage all veterans who may be eligible for compensation to contact my office for assistance making a claim.”                                                       

“I am thankful the day has finally come that veterans affected by contaminated  at Camp  begin receiving compensation,” said Senator Tillis (R-NC). “This overdue justice is a result of persistence and hard-work by a number of people, and I would like to specifically thank Senator Burr and Jerry Ensminger for tirelessly advocating on behalf of the victims.

As always, any veteran who has a problem receiving their compensation from the  should contact my office.” The rule will provide compensation for veterans that served at Camp  for 30 days (consecutive or nonconsecutive) or more from 1953 to 1987. Service members suffering from the following eight diseases automatically qualify for compensation:

  • Kidney cancer
  • Liver cancer
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Adult leukemia
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Aplastic anemia and other myelodysplastic syndromes
  • Bladder cancer

The  estimates that more than 900,000 service members could have been exposed to toxic . Senator Burr has worked tirelessly to secure the medical care and compensation for veterans affected by toxic  at Camp . In 2015, the  granted disability status to victims of Camp  poisoned . The federal rule is available online here.

Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., news release.

(c) 2017 Targeted News Service



Evidence shows that many men and women are going about their daily chores with

this deadly disease in them and there has been no effort by the VA or DOD to develop a screening format those men and women.

We tell our friends and family that “early detection” is the key to survival of these disease yet the VA and DOD continue to 

essentially say call us when you are dying.

From the 1950s through the 1980s, veterans and family members who served on active duty or resided at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina may have been exposed to drinking water that was contaminated with benzene and other hazardous chemicals.  Evidence also shows that many men and women are going about their daiormat those men and women.

Some evidence has indicated a link between the water contamination and the development of certain conditions, including several types of cancer. On Aug. 6, 2012, a new law was signed to provide medical care for veterans and family members who may have been affected. 

If you or a loved one served on active duty or resided at Camp Lejeune between Jan. 1, 1953 and Dec. 31, 1987 and developed any of the following conditions, you may have legal recourse:

Esophageal cancer
Lung cancer
Bladder cancer
Breast cancer
Kidney cancer
Renal toxicity
Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma 
Neurobehavioral effects
 Multiple myeloma
Myelodysplastic syndromes
Hepatic steatosis
Female infertility 

What Compensation is the VA Providing? 

Under the new law, veterans and family members are only entitled to medical care through the VA for the 15 medical conditions listed above. This new law applies only to health benefits and not disability compensation; however, veterans and family members who suspect they developed a health condition related to the contaminated drinking water are still eligible to submit a claim to the VA for disability benefits.

Congress granted the VA the authority to prescribe all rules and regulations presumptively connecting a disease to service. We appreciate efforts by the VA and Congress to support our Marines and their families.
To contact the Department of Veterans Affairs to learn more about health care benefits, please visit, or call (877) 222-8387 (Healthcare), or (800) 827-1000 (Benefits).
The health and welfare of our Marines, Sailors, their families and our civilian workers are top priorities for the Marine Corps. We continue to work diligently to identify and notify individuals who may have been exposed to the chemicals in drinking water at Camp Lejeune. For more information about these efforts, or to update your contact information, please see: or contact the Camp Lejeune Historic Drinking Water Call Center at (877) 261-9782, or e-mail Please share this information with anyone that may have been at Camp Lejeune between the dates noted and encourage them to register with us.
John Merritt
Supportive Education for the Returning Veteran 


Supportive Education for the Returning Veteran (SERV) is currently partnering with the Cleveland Stokes VA Medical Center  to establish a nationally mandated The Cleveland Veterans and Family Resiliency Council

The mission of the council is to facilitate humane, quality, compassionate mental health services and provide education for Veterans and their families, to ensure that all Veterans, family members and partners feel comfortable using the Medical Center's mental health services. We will seek opportunities to partner with the Medical Center's mental health department and other community mental health organizations and improve the perception of mental health in the Northeast Ohio area. If you are a Veteran, family member or the member of a community mental health organization please join us at to kick off Cleveland's Veterans Mental Council


Summary of the January meeting; How to improve the veterans access.  The Veterans and Family Resiliency Council is working on the Cleveland and Parma's telephone system and we discussed funding, the National Veterans Mental Health Council teleconference and The annual report. We will have the agenda on the first of the month.  As you know we are having the meeting on the fourth Monday.  

See you at the next meeting


ON MONDAY, August 21, 2017 1:00 P.M.-3:00 P.M.

I will keep the website updated with any changes
If you have any questions feel free to contact me John Merritt at: or 216.798.3540.  Office 575. 312.2441






Who is the SERV Program?

The Veterans Research Group (VRG), a 501 (c) (3), supports veterans and veteran's families interested in higher education.  VRG is the parent organization of Supportive Education for the Returning Veteran (SERV).  SERV is a program designed to assist in creating a more veteran friendly college campus environment for our returning OEF-OIF service-members.  Section T of the “Higher Education Opportunity Act” calls for model programs for Center of Excellence for Veteran Student Success.  SERV has been selected as one of the best programs in the country.  (Nov 12, 2008 Wal-Mart Ace award).  Cleveland State, a SERV school at the time was also selected for the Tillman Scholarship award.


John Merritt



216.481.8486 Office

21039 Goller Ave.

Euclid, Ohio 44119-1850

161 reunion


 The HMM-161 ASSOCIATION held their annual reunion in Knoxville in May of this year.  The group can from all over the United States to connect with their Marine Corp brothers.  The even lasted for 3 days and they had several social and business gathering.  The group is made up of Marines from what they term "The Nam era."  But most of the group's participants are from the training squadron HMM-161.  That group of men developed, trained, grew and went to Vietnam as on squadron and most stayed with the squadron for the 13 month tour.

SERV would like to say the "The Nam era group".  Thank you for a job well donel.