TAMAQUA, SCHUYLKILL COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A local veteran’s wife is hoping to honor her late husband’s service on the Vietnam memorial wall in our nation’s capitol, but he didn’t die in battle and now she’s frustrated at the process to get recognition for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice.
William A. Zubey of Tamaqua passed away in September from Agent Orange exposure during the Vietnam War, along with other illnesses.
His wife, Daryl Zubey of Tamaqua, is now in a battle to see his name and years of service honored in Washington DC.
There are more than 58,000 names of servicemembers on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall.
Daryl feels her husband’s name should be on it too.
“My husband died because of Agent Orange and the Vietnam War so he is no different than any individual who is on that wall,” Daryl explained.
William A. Zubey served four years in the United States Marine Corps, two of which were during the Vietnam War, and was honorably discharged.
According to his death records, he passed away at his home last month after suffering from the effects of Agent Orange exposure during the Vietnam War for more than 45 years.
“He couldn’t do anything without assistance and that was hard,” Daryl said.
Daryl feels her husband’s battle with Agent Orange should be recognized equally with death on the battlefield. However, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund website explains online.
Neither victims of Agent Orange nor PTSD-induced suicides fit the parameters for inclusion on the wall.Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund
“They may not have died in Vietnam by a bullet or a landmine but these people are suffering for decades with diseases,” Daryl said.
Daryl says she reached out to government officials for guidance on recognition for the veterans who passed as a result of Agent Orange but so far hasn’t seen any movement to change the rules.
“There has to be a way of starting this. I will fight for this until I close my eyes,” said Daryl.
According to the VA, Veterans exposed to Agent Orange during the Vietnam War are entitled to disability compensation if they have a health condition caused by exposure to it.