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Bob Wolfertz



Bob Wolfertz is a retired Marine Corps lieutenant colonel. He served as the executive officer for the 4th Marine Infantry Regiment during combat operation against Iraqi forces in the first Gulf War. His unit was tasked with breaching minefields and obstacle belts to clear a path for the First Marine Division of Mechanized Armor Assault into the belly of Kuwait. Col. Wolfertz completed the detoxification program in 1998.

He recalls his exposures and their effects and the long-term benefits of detoxification.



Once we started having immediate success on the battlefield, Saddam Hussein, the Iraqi dictator ordered the torching of the oil wells that had been overtaken in Kuwait. This sent up a tremendous black cloud of oil smoke, tens of miles wide and I don’t know how high, that eventually started raining on us. It was literally rain in small droplets kind of drizzling out of the sky, putting black flecks of oil on my uniform and on my skin and everything that it touched on the surface. We were breathing that and obviously it can get in through your skin and through inhalation. That wasn’t a very good experience. I had no idea what the impact would be until sometime later on.

Prior to launching our attack, thousands of us were given an experimental preventative medicine, actually a couple of medicines, administered orally and through vaccine, to counteract the potential use of Anthrax and other biological chemical agents on the battlefield.

Once we successfully launched our attack, we ultimately wound up in a place called Al Jaber, a Kuwaiti Air Force base that had been overtaken by the Iraqis. We took it back from them and while that battle was going on we had state of the art equipment that the Germans had provided alerted us to the presence of chemicals on the battlefield. We had to go don our gas mask and wear protective equipment because we were told that there was a real alert that said, yes chemicals were being used on the battlefield. The only place that I know that I know for fact it is documented would be in the combat journals of my regiment and the other regiments that were involved. We subsequently learned that Saddam had given his local level artillery commanders to fire chemical munitions.

When the war was over, when we were traveling back down to Saudi Arabia, we came down the coastal highway that goes from Iraq through Kuwait down to Saudi Arabia. A big column of Iraqi vehicles that were heading north on that highway was taken out by our aircraft using munitions that contained depleted uranium rounds. The impact of those rounds and one of the things that makes them so effective is the fact that they explode with depleted uranium. As we traveled south down the highway, we were in close proximity to these vehicles being destroyed by those depleted uranium rounds.

It wasn’t too long after that when I started experiencing lower back pain in the area of my kidneys. I went to see our regimental surgeon. I think he told me to just take some pain pills, which I did not do. I waited to be seen again when I got back to my base in Hawaii when I returned home from the war. Ultimately it started to subside.

I retired from the Marine Corps and not too long after that I started to have joint aches and rashes on my skin. I started getting a sty in my lower left eyelid. I had never had a sty in my life before and I had one that was recurring on a fairly regular basis. I had headaches. I felt fatigued all the time and I just really didn’t know what was going on. I just thought gosh, I’ve retired from the Marine Corps and I’m getting old and things are falling apart.

I happened to be watching a segment on the 20/20 television show. They were talking about other veterans and the things that were going on and they started to describe these symptoms that I was having. The joint aches, the rashes, the headaches, the irritability, short-term memory loss, fatigue and I just went through the checklist and I went oh my gosh. Check, check, check, check, I’ve got all of these.

Enough folks became symptomatic that it soon wasn’t something that could just be swept away. Eventually a presidential advisory committee was formed to look into the problem. That committee traveled around the country taking testimony from people like me. When the committee came to Boston, Dr. Gordon at the VA Clinic of Manchester, New Hampshire was aware that that was going to happen and he asked me to please go to the committee meeting and give my testimony. So I did. When the meeting was over, I was approached by a woman whose name was Diana Dulka, whose husband had died from the effects of Gulf War. He was symptomatic and died. Diane told me about a detox program that was being offered to veterans taking place at Health Med in Sacramento, California. She said that I could call the director and see if it’s a program that I could get into.

I called and then I headed out to Health Med and I started the program. My third day in the program in the detox, I was sitting in the sauna. I was sitting on a towel and I got up to go for my break and I picked up my towel and on either side of my butt cheeks where I had been sitting there, there were these kind of tannish brown spots on the towel. And I’m what heck is that. It looked like something that had come out from my sweat, but it was just really bizarre. So I went outside, I took my break, I came back in and I took a fresh towel and I put it down and I sat on it just to see okay, what’s going on here.

After a while, I stood up and looked down and there was this same C-shaped ring where I had been sitting of this tannish brown stain on the towels. It was like, wow, something’s come out of me. I don’t know what it is, but I’m sure glad because I don’t think it belongs there.

I think it was on day 17, I was sitting in the sauna and just one of those strange things, I happened to have a towel on the floor and I picked my feet up to move them and there were these black dots on the towel. It was, you know, the same feeling of oh my gosh, what is that. So I picked up my feet to move them, waited a while, picked them up again and there were more of these black dots. I had black ooze coming out of the bottoms of my feet. The next day I started to feel really, really good, and it was within 2 or 3 days I had achieved a state of well-being that I had not experienced in a very, very long time.

My short-term memory returned. I was thinking sharper and clearer. I felt a natural euphoria – call it mental, call it spiritual, call it whatever you want.

Then I became an advocate. I just wanted to share this with other folks, the first being my wife, who also had been experiencing some of her own symptoms. She wound up going through the program as well. She tells her story much better than I can but she had a similar experience in that she arrived at that point of a whole bunch of stuff that had been in her system from her past being flushed out and she was just feeling like I did, like “Wow.”

People talk about wanting to get back to feeling young again. That’s what happened to me. In fact, I will be 69 years old soon, and almost twenty years after doing the program, I still feel young.

I am an absolute believer that the detox works and I just wish that so many others could benefit from it and be blessed the