A. W. “Whitey” Westphal, Past President
Will March come in as a lion or a lamb? Just like action before the Congress affecting Railroad Retirement, we will have to wait and see. While it is early in the First Session of the 114th Congress, we must be continually alert as to what legislation is introduced for action. Our National Officers and specifically our National Legislative Representative, Gary Faley are ever watchful for any indication of a change in our Railroad Retirement, Social Security or any other measure that may affect our monthly annuity.
In February, we were active with non-members of NARVRE who were given a clear understanding of what we may expect in the future concerning legislation before the Congress. Needless to say they were shocked to learn what may take place and what we, collectively, may do about it. Just by making a phone call or writing a letter to their Representative in the House and/or their two (2) U. S. Senators. We were pleasantly surprised that many in attendance were well aware of what needed to be done, and were equally aware of what needed to be done to band the retirees together in a Unit of NARVRE, elect officers and be totally aware immediately when something needed to be done. It was clear to all the speakers, that while knowledge of legislative action was present, they just needed to be organized and informed. Information relative to the Pharmaceutical Alert and asbestos was related to and left with an understanding of the service provided by the Designated Legal Counsel for NARVRE the Moody Law Firm.
With the total cooperation of the Moody Law Firm on February 12 in Fort Worth, TX National President Tom Dwyer and National Vice President Tony Padilla made clear the need for a Unit in this well populated retiree area in Texas. The mandatory leadership for the Unit was present and stepped forward to assist in the future progress of the Unit when formed. New members were signed and those in the leadership role accepted additional application forms to spread among potential new members for the Unit in Fort Worth, TX. We will continue to monitor the action in this area which is a real bonus for NARVRE and our total membership. Information relative to the Pharmaceutical Alert and Asbestos was related to and left with an understanding of the service provided by the Designated Legal Counsel for NARVRE the Moody Law Firm.
We were provided a solid “tip” from Area 5 Director G. G. Gonzalez of a Railroad Retirement Club in Florence, SC. was active and desired to learn more about NARVRE and specifically about unforeseen Railroad Retirement issues. Again, with the cooperation of the Moody Law Firm, designated legal Counsel for NARVFE we made the necessary arrangements with Area 1 Director Jim Johnson to attend the meeting scheduled for February 21 in Florence. We met with the Railroad Retiree Club President James Williams and his Vice President David White prior to the meeting on 2/21. In this fashion we were able to outline the intent of NARVRE and get needed support for the Club to consider a joint effort. The result of our address was overwhelming and we were able to sign members for NARVRE. We believe this effort will result in a new and impressive Unit of NARVRE. The interest and need for a Unit was very impressive and we will continue to monitor this action in South Carolina.
This month we will be addressing the regular meeting of the Railroad Administrators of Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (RABO). This group is a leadership group of the B&O Retirees and could well be an invitation to a series of openings for NARVRE Units and membership. One of the members of the group successfully filed a legal action against the Railroad Retirement Board and was successful in receiving a large verdict in the Federal Court. The action by NARVRE member Joe Bory may set a precedent for retirees in the future. We look forward to addressing this RABO Group on March 18 in Jacksonville, FL in the Clam Room, St Mary’s Seafood located at 11290 Old Street, Augustine Road in Jacksonville, FL. Activity begins at 11:0 a.m.
For advance information we are planning an Informational Meeting April 8 in Memphis, TN and will address the Union Pacific Old Timers annual Meeting in Portland, OR on April 26. More detailed information will be published in the April issue of the Past President’s Report.
NARVRE Area Directors are urged to contact “Whitey” Westphal, Retiree Representative of the Moody Law Firm (firstname.lastname@example.org or (440) 452-8427 for assistance in planning the important Informational Meetings at railroad Terminals or elsewhere in an attempt to alert Railroad Retirees of their rights under the Railroad Retirement Act. We are confident you have heard the statement; “I have never heard of NARVRE”. “How long has it been around”? “What do they do for a Railroad Retiree”? The important Informational Meeting will resolve those questions and alert attendees as to how they may be adversely affected by actions in the Congress. Also, if any person attending is not a member of NARVRE, they may join and participate. Many retirees are totally unaware of what to do if they are notified of an alleged overpayment by the Railroad Retirement Board. These issues as well as the $2,000.00 death benefit available in the case of a retiree death are fully explained.
The Moody Law Firm also provides information in the form of aPharmaceutical Alert to advise of many drugs prescribed for you that may adversely affect your health. These issues together with information concerning Asbestos Exposure are fully outlined and notice of immediate contact information 1 (800) 793 – 4816 is made available. Many retirees are skeptical as to actions involving an attorney or challenging issues that may affect their health. There should be no concern inasmuch as the Moody Law Firm has represented Railroad Employees for many, many years as a Designated Legal Counsel. Since the 1998 National Convention in Chattanooga, TN the Moody Law Firm has represented NARVRE Members and other Retires without issue of any kind. They have your interests first in mind when called upon to represent you and your family.
As the Retire Representative of the Moody Law Firm we are very proud of the collective efforts we have accomplished in working with Area Directors to benefit NARVRE and its membership. New Members across the nation and new Units of NARVRE will make a difference. You will be proud of the participation in this effort.
Our distribution of the NARVRE Asbestos Alert and the Pharmaceutical Alert has been well received by NARVRE members attending the Informational Meetings. Needless to say the information is very valuable to everyone who has such an exposure or did have the exposure when they were working. The age groups we are privileged to represent are fully aware of the prescription medication they take as a result of their visit to the family doctor or specialist as the case may be.
Unfortunately, in many instances those prescriptions from your doctor or specialist may not be what is needed and may cause additional confusion and harm to your well being. As a NARVRE Member you and your family have at your finger tips valuable legal assistance you may use for your protection and that of your loved ones. You may also lend such information to those who you are aware of serious illness caused by Pharmaceutical drugs.
The Moody Law Firm was designated as NARVRE Legal Counsel at the 1998 National Convention held in Chattanooga, TN. Those Delegates recognized the need for representation by a National Firm recognized by Labor Unions across the United States who protects the rights of injured railroad employees. In a like manner the Moody Law Firm continues to represent retirees and NARVRE families who for one reason or another needs the protection. The protection is there now at your finger tips by calling toll free (800) 793-4816 and speaking with a pleasant and informed specialist in matters pertaining to your interests.
We are greatly concerned with the latest invasion into your health via prescription drugs which may have been prescribed by your doctor or specialist. The two Alerts are listed here for your immediate attention:
this is a product that was manufactured by a company called Fresenius Medical Care of North America. It is used in conjunction with dialysis. They administer this product to individuals who are on dialysis and due to some complications with the product it has caused cardiovascular death, sudden cardiovascular death, cardio-pulmonary arrest, heart attack and other catastrophic cardiovascular injuries such as Stroke in individuals who are using this product.
The main inquiry that needs to be made is whether or not an individual was on dialysis between 2003 and April 1, 2012 and they suffered one of the target injuries within forty-eight hours of undergoing dialysis. Anyone who fits this category needs to contact the Moody Law Firm (800) 793-4816 or they may investigate further to determine if GranuFlo was actually used by the clinic they were at when they were having dialysis.
Please watch for additional information in the NARVRE Newsletter.
the Moody Law Firm filed the first lawsuit against New England Compounding Center resulting from a fungus contaminate steroid injection. The lawsuit was in Roanoke, VA on behalf of a retired Norfolk and Southern conductor. Basil Proffitt received a steroid injection for chronic back pain. Mr. Proffitt developed fungus meningitis as a result of contaminated steroid manufactured by New England Compounding Center. Testing of New England Compounding Center steroid product has confirmed that they are contaminated with fungus which has caused the meningitis outbreak. In Virginia two deaths and 23 cases of fungal meningitis have been linked to the steroid injection.
The lawsuit alleges negligence by New England Compounding Center in failing to use safe and sterile manufacturing process and ask for $5 million dollars in damages. Ongoing investigation by the FDA indicate that New England Compounding Center may have been violating steroid federal and/or state regulations by mass producing the inject able solution without proper prescriptions for the drug. New England Compounding Center has recalled all of its products from the market.
Symptoms related to this infected injection causing meningitis include headaches, fever, nausea, stiffness of the neck, confusion, dizziness, discomfort from lights and stroke symptoms. Individuals who have had steroid injection from one of the clinic supplied by this product should immediately seek evaluation from their physician to determine if their symptoms are related to fungal meningitis.
The Moody Law Firm represents meningitis victims from this steroid contamination and expects more cases will be filed. If you or a loved one has had an epidural steroid injection since May of 2012 and have experienced any of the symptoms associated with meningitis, been diagnosed with meningitis or unfortunately as had a family member die from this illness, you may be entitled to compensation and should call the Moody Law Firm immediately for a free consultation. Toll Free (800) 793-4816.
Please keep familiar with your health issues and those of your family. It is in your best interest to be aware of your condition and take advantage of the services offered by NARVRE and the Moody Law Firm at 1 (800) 793-4816.
August “Whitey” Westphal, Past President