Levy Konigsberg LLP (LK) salutes the brave men and women that put their lives in danger each day to protect our great nation. Today, on Veterans Day and each-and-every day, we acknowledge the sacrifice that soldiers, sailors, airmen, coastguardsmen, and marines make for our freedom and we proudly honor these selfless heroes.
In addition to thanking our veterans, we would be remiss if we did not acknowledge the families of military members. Military families sacrifice time with their loved ones and provide our troops with the emotional support that they need.
Sadly, so many of LK’s clients were unknowingly exposed to asbestos while serving and defending our country. Asbestos was mined and used for its heat-resistant and fire-resistant chemical and physical properties. Between the 1940s and the 1970s, asbestos was extensively used in the building and maintenance of aircraft and navy ships, military vehicles, shipyards, and within military facilities, putting veterans at a higher risk for developing mesothelioma and other asbestos diseases such as lung cancer and asbestosis.
Mesothelioma is a rare cancer with no known cure that occurs in less than 1% of all cancers in the United States. The number of veterans diagnosed with mesothelioma is disproportionately high. There are three main types of mesothelioma, which can be diagnosed by pathological examination from a biopsy:
1) Pleural – primarily affecting the lung and chest regions
2) Peritoneal – thickening of the peritoneal lining in the abdominal cavity
3) Pericardial – affecting the pericardial sac, which is the protective covering of the heart
We have been introduced through our asbestos litigation practice to so many veterans who have suffered not only the tragic experiences of war but also the devastating effects of their asbestos-related illness. US Navy veterans who served during World War II, unfortunately, have the highest incidences of asbestos-related disease.
Individuals suffering from mesothelioma and other asbestos injuries suffer from difficulty breathing, chest pain, fluid in their lungs or abdomen, fatigue, loss of appetite, and weight loss. Early detection is important and treatment options include surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy.
Asbestos injuries such as mesothelioma can take decades to develop from the time of exposure to this hazardous mineral. There is a latency period of 20-50 years between exposure and the development of mesothelioma. It is important to note that after being diagnosed with an asbestos injury, there is a limited window of time allowed by law to initiate legal action against the responsible parties. We recommend that veterans diagnosed with an asbestos injury contact a law firm with a proven history of helping veterans, in order to preserve their rights.
Although veterans cannot sue the United States Government, they can seek benefits from the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and hold the asbestos sellers, distributors, and manufacturers financially accountable for causing their injuries.
It is truly an honor working on behalf of veterans and fighting for those who fought for our country.
For your dedication, hard work, and bravery, you have our everlasting gratitude.