US Veterans Scattered Throughout The Country Have Developed Camp Lejeune Water Cancer
Marines and other servicemembers living in remote areas of the US are sharing their Camp Lejeune water cancer stories with local media
Thursday, May 11, 2023 - US Marines are the largest group of individuals stationed at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina from 1953 to 1987 and most have returned to their home towns after their military service. Marine veterans are scattered throughout the United States today, in every state, town, and village. Many marines are unaware that the illness they now suffer, decades removed from their time in the Marines most likely was caused by Camp Lejeune water contamination. From 1953 to 1987, the tap water at Camp Lejeune was contaminated with highly toxic levels of trichloroethylene (TCE), perchloroethylene (PCE), benzene, and vinyl chloride, chemicals used to degrease military equipment and weaponry, and other industrial and maintenance activities on the base. These chemicals were released directly into the soil and found their way into the ground and surface water, contaminating it. The chemical contamination at Camp Lejeune was so great that dozens of types of cancer and other neurological diseases like Parkinson's disease are presumed to have been caused by drinking the water. US Marines that lived otherwise healthy, robust lives, and have no family history of cancer are being diagnosed with the disease. They are gradually making the connection to the source of their life-threatening illness. Most types of cancer have a latency period of ten years or more where the disease lies dormant but nonetheless deadly in one's body. SDNewsWatch.org (SD) gives the account of a US marine veteran whose body is suffering from the ravages of throat cancer and other arthritis-like symptoms from drinking Camp Lejeune tap water decades ago. SD reports that Ronald Lawson spent 6 years at Camp Lejeune ending in 1983, leaving in what he thought was perfect health. " He was a roofer and mechanic who loved to fish and camp and spend days at a time enjoying the outdoors. But roughly a decade ago, Lawson's health and life began to change. In a period of about eight years, his knees and back gave out, he lost vision in one eye, he suffered severe stomach and intestinal pain, and he woke up one day with a lump the size of a goose egg in his neck that turned out to be Stage 4 throat cancer. Lawson, who never smoked, was stunned at the pace and severity of his sudden illnesses."
Others who are dying from cancer, and the surviving loved ones of those who have died can file a Camp Lejeune Justice Act claim seeking lump-sum monetary compensation. Although there is currently a backlog of more than 45,000 claims a settlement offer could be made in the near future. Many Camp Lejeune Justice Act claims may expire unanswered and enable one to file a lawsuit in the Eastern District of North Carolina. The Navy has promised to do better and process each claim promptly. Lawsuits filed in North Carolina may be consolidated into multi-district litigation (MDL) since each lawsuit is similar to the illnesses and the defendant. The magnitude of the Camp Lejeune water contamination problem could cost the US taxpayer tens of millions of dollars over the years and decades to come.