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Air Force Veteran Attacked By Fire Ants At Atlanta VA Living Center, $1,000,000 Settlement Reached

RICHMOND, VA, July 22, 2022–– Following almost three years of investigation, litigation, and publicity, the United States government has agreed to resolve its part in this case relating to the death of Air Force veteran Joel Marrable. In early September 2019, Mr. Marrable was attacked by swarms of fire ants in his room at the Eagles Nest CLC, a VA nursing home connected with the VA Medical Center in Decatur, Georgia. As part of their ongoing efforts to seek justice for this family, Rawls Law Group and The Law Offices of Josh Sacks, PC announce that the United States government has paid $1,000,000 to the children of Mr. Marrable. Related to these events, the United States recently proposed a long-term investment of over $50 billion to implement top-down changes to the provision of healthcare for veterans.

The family also seeks to hold the pest control company, Orkin, the Atlanta-based subsidiary of Rollins, Inc., responsible for harms and losses caused by its below-industry-standard conduct relating to a known ant problem at the Atlanta VA in the summer of 2019. Claims against Orkin, will continue in State Court in Georgia.

About The Case

In September 2019, Joel Marrable was a veteran living at the Eagles Nest Community Living Center in Atlanta, Georgia. He suffered hundreds of fire ant stings on two separate occasions just days apart, and ultimately succumbed to his injuries. The Marrable family’s original lawsuit alleged that the combined inactions of the VA and Orkin caused Mr. Marrable’s suffering and death. Through the litigation, the Marrable family confirmed that the VA’s Eagles Nest CLC staff and leadership were aware of a significant ant problem for several months before the attacks on Mr. Marrable. The VA management sought the assistance of Orkin. The Marrable family asserts that both the VA and Orkin failed to take appropriate standard measures to identify the source of the ant problem, failed to propose appropriate and effective solutions, and ultimately failed to rid the facility of the fire ants. Mr. Marrable and other residents were left unprotected. An internal investigation found widespread, systemic problems at the facility.

The surviving children of Mr. Marrable seek to bring justice for and awareness to the plight of their father and other veterans. They want their father to be remembered with dignity and respect, as an individual who put his life on the line to protect this country. The family hopes that the impact of this case goes well beyond the payment of money. Already, as it relates to the issues with the government itself, significant personnel and process changes have been made at the VA, both in Atlanta and nationwide. Indeed, the Eagles Nest itself is scheduled to be torn down and replaced in a new location with a new facility.

About The Law Offices of Josh Sacks, P.C.

The Law Offices of Josh Sacks, P.C. represents victims of negligence and wrongdoing in catastrophic personal injury and wrongful death cases. Over the course of his twenty-five-plus year career, Josh Sacks has been recognized by his peers and by legal organizations as a leading attorney in complex litigation involving intricate and serious medical issues. Please view us online at

About Rawls Law Group

Rawls Law Group is widely recognized for its nationwide Federal Tort Claims practice representing veterans and military families in medical malpractice claims against the federal government, as well as the firm’s nationwide vaccination injury practice, and medical malpractice cases in the state of Virginia. To find out more about the cases we handle, please visit us online at


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