bARABie – Hard Hitting Facts

April 16, 2007

In Their Own Words:

Filed under: Uncategorized — barabie @ 7:39 am

Gerard D. Matthew, former Marine and Army national guard soldier

By AUDREY PARENTE
STAFF WRITER

Gerard D. Matthew, a former Marine and Army national guard soldier who served in Iraq in 2003, is one of eight veterans who tested positive for depleted uranium exposure and have become plaintiffs in a lawsuit against the military.

Matthew, 33, of New York claims to suffer myriad symptoms from facial swelling and triple vision, to a tumor at the base of his brain. His daughter, Victoria Claudette, 3, was born missing three fingers. He argues that the Army caused his illnesses and birth defect of his daughter when it violated its own safety protocols, exposing him to radioactive depleted unraium.

Following is a recent phone interview with Matthew.

Q: What did you do in Iraq?
I was a truck driver and hauled all different types of equipment.

Q: Why are you suing the military?
I have been diagnosed with a series of different ailments – chronic migraines, erectile dysfunction, idiopathic angioedema, fibromyalgia and (a) series of other problems. Myself and other soldiers (sued) to take care ourselves and our families. We had six charges against the government. However four have been dismissed pending appeal. We have also sued the VA as well.

Q: What do you hope to accomplish?
We need to get (the) message out to other soldiers who might be suffering from ailments that cannot be diagnosed. We feel the American people — especially small-town America — needs to know (that) the weapons we have hurt their own children and the government knows it. I want them to speak the truth and follow the constitution as it (is) supposed to be and stop carrying out impeachable offenses.

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