A federal agency investigating the link between veterans cancer and a leaking nuclear reactor found years of key records documenting exposure have been lost.
CLEVELAND - Two top level cabinet officials in the Obama administration have been asked to review an exclusive 5 On Your Side investigation into possible radiation exposure among Navy personnel.
Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown, who serves on the Senate Committee for Veterans Affairs, is sending letters to both Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki asking to investigate veterans' cancer claims.
The exclusive 5 On Your Side investigation raised serious questions involving a "portable" nuclear plant at McMurdo Station in Antarctica where Navy personnel served during the 1960s and 70s.
The plant was shut down in 1972 and dismantled.
But our investigation reviewed the Navy's final operating report that revealed a history of malfunctions -- 438 over the plant's operating period from 1964 to 1972.
Veterans who served there have long suspected their cancers were related to possible radiation exposure, although the final report concluded that levels were not excessive.
"When your station is exposing these things where veterans are put in a position where maybe they should not have been put and wind up developing diseases like cancer, your expose and our efforts together can get to the bottom of it and see exactly what happened and take action accordingly, said Brown.
"That's why I am asking Secretaries Gates and Shinseki to fix this any way we can."
Federal hearings prompted by an exclusive 5 On Your Side investigation into radiation exposure among McMurdo Navy veterans are scheduled to begin Tuesday morning.
A Navy veteran who helped trigger a federal probe into a leaking nuclear plant at McMurdo Station, Antarctica, has died of cancer just weeks before a government report on radiation exposure is due to be released.
Journalism judges around the country have honored Chief Investigator Ron Regan with the Peabody, Edward R. Murrow and regional Emmy awards in recent weeks, but something Regan received Thursday may be his most prized keepsake of all.
Federal hearings confirm how Navy veterans were unwittingly exposed to leaking radiation first revealed in an exclusive 5 On Your Side investigation.