Friday, February 1, 2008

The Death of Marine Carmelo Rodriguez

I found the link to the video posted on

From CBS Evening News with Katie Couric, Thursday, January 31, 2008.
Length of video is 8:20.
Posted on YouTube here...

A Question Of Care: Military Malpractice?
One Marine Served His Country With Care. Was His Cancer Misdiagnosed, Leading To His Death?

ELLENVILLE, N.Y., Jan. 31, 2007
(CBS) Carmelo Rodriguez was dancing with his niece just last year. By all accounts Rodriguez, a 29-year old, loved life, his family and the Marine Corps. He was also an artist, a father, and a part-time actor. He once appeared with Katie Holmes in a scene on the TV series Dawson's Creek.

An image of Sgt. Rodriguez with his Marine buddies in Iraq in 2005 shows him as a fit, gung-ho platoon leader.

CBS News correspondent Byron Pitts met Rodriguez two months ago. That once-buff physique had been whittled down to less than 80 pounds in 18 months by stage 4 melanoma. He was surrounded by family, including his 7-year-old son holding his hand. It was Rodriguez's idea we meet.

When Sgt. Rodriguez was in Iraq, military doctors, he says, misdiagnosed his skin cancer. They called it "a wart."

Eight minutes after Pitts met Sgt. Carmelo Rodriguez, and CBS News was preparing to interview him, he died.
for more of this go here
But he's not the only one.

Friday, January 25, 2008

VA Red Flag turned away veteran with tumor
Sick Redmond veteran says he's getting run-aroundJan 24, 2008 10:35 PM ESTVA denies 'red-flagging' means care is deniedBy Nina Mehlhaf, KTVZ.COMA Redmond veteran says he was refused medical treatment at the Bend VA Clinic, red-flagged and now can't get the treatment he needs for advanced cancer.Now he's pleading with officials to fix the system, while they say he was a disturbance.
Pill bottles in the dozens line the bedside 52-year-old Jeffery Severns sleeps in in his Redmond living room.The veteran was a combat nurse all over the world and served in Operation Desert Storm.But cancer has spread into his shoulder, tailbone, spine, ribs and gall bladder.Last spring, it was his throat that hurt him the most, so he went to the VA Clinic in Bend without an appointment and begged to be seen, but it didn't happen."Since [my vocal cords] were paralyzed, there was too much air going in and out," Severns explained Thursday. "I couldn't speak, so I would have to take in huge amounts of air to take in a few words. So they thought I was weird.
They thought because I was anxious, because I thought I was going to die, they thought I was a threat."Severns says he was red-flagged, a process the Department of Veterans Affairs uses when someone is disruptive, threatening or violent.He says the Bend clinic refused him service, so he got a ride to Portland's VA Medical Center. He says doctors there were ready to help - until they looked at his file and saw the red flag.He says he was escorted right out of the building and continues to be banned from the Bend office.It wasn't until a private doctor at a Washington hospital scanned him and found what was wrong. He had a tumor the size of his heart, wrapped around his aorta.

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