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camp lejeune water contamination 2019

ATSDR has been assessing the health risks from hazardous substances in the drinking water at Camp Lejeune since the late 1980s. If you served at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune or Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) New River in North Carolina, you may have had contact with contaminants in the drinking water there. Veterans and families exposed Camp LeJeune was established in 1942 as a Marine Corps military base in Jacksonville, NC. He lost three fingers. Sharon Stevans initially suspected exposure to Agent Orange, but when she looked into it, she discovered the water issue at Camp Lejeune. The secretary of the Navy is denying all remaining civil claims by individuals exposed to contaminated drinking water at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, … In 2017, Sergeant Ensminger testified before the Veterans Affairs Committee about the significant challenges Camp Lejeune families face. Dr. Clapp: The Camp Lejeune drinking water contamination, as I mentioned, was primarily due to two chemicals that were in the drinking water for different parts of the base. Enjoy the videos and music you love, upload original content, and share it all with friends, family, and the world on YouTube. ATSDR’s Camp Lejeune studies of people exposed occupationally or environmentally to TCE, PCE, vinyl chloride and benzene. Those are what he kept; he sold many. Historically, Camp Lejeune served as one of three boot-camp facilities for the … For more, subscribe. “The Marine Corps was supposed to have sent out letters to everybody — 900,000 people that were affected by this,” she said. Other scars: His brother died of cancer, perhaps linked to his duty in Iraq, amid burn pits and battlefields laced with depleted uranium. Page created - May 13, 2019. The contamination of drinking water at Camp Lejeune started in the early 1950s and officials say it ended in 1985 when highly contaminated water wells were removed from service. I think in some ways he goes between being at peace and not being at peace.”. I recently served as an expert witness regarding a Camp LeJeune veteran. The Camp Lejeune water contamination problem occurred at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune from 1953 to 1987. ATSDR has conducted studies about Camp Lejeune because people were exposed to chemicals shown to be associated with several cancers and other chronic conditions. Due to the nature of the contamination at Camp Lejeune, the 500,000 veterans that are living are likely to have a higher mortality rate than the general population. Years would pass before they would start the process to get benefits through Veterans Affair because they were in and out of hospitals, Tom Tedesco said. “He got out of boot camp the day the order was given to pull out of Vietnam,” Aaron Morehouse said. “That’s been the biggest shock to me — I really thought that when you joined there’d be a contract to take care of you, to do the right thing by your men and your women and I haven’t found that to be true,” she said. During that time, United States Marine Corps (USMC) service members and their families living at the base bathed in and ingested tap water that was contaminated with harmful chemicals at concentrations from 240 to 3400 times levels permitted by safety standards. “[N]o other military toxic exposure incident in our history has been documented nor studied as thoroughly as Camp Lejeune,” Sergeant Ensminger told the Committee. There are 40,000 people living there at any one time. “Concentrate on what you’re doing.”. “Well, the Marine Corps and the Navy have not been ever faithful over this issue. He was sent to Vietnam in 1965, returning in 1966. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates as many as 1 million of them face the risk those compounds present: a half dozen forms of cancer; neurobehavior effects, renal toxicity, infertility, miscarriages — 15 ailments in all. VA Plans to Propose Expanded Disability Benefits Eligibility for Veterans Exposed to. Senators Richard Burr (R-NC), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Jon Tester (D-MT), Marco Rubio (R-FL), and Ben Cardin (D-MD) have introduced, “It is unconscionable that the VA continues to deny and delay medical care to families suffering as a result of exposure to toxic chemicals at Camp Lejeune,”, “While progress has been made to ensure that veterans and their families who were poisoned at Camp Lejeune receive the benefits they have long deserved, some victims are still not receiving the care to which they are entitled because the VA has refused to accept the most up to date scientific data and research available,”, “If our servicemembers are exposed to toxic substances in the line of duty, it’s our duty to ensure they get the best care possible,”, “I’m proud to join my colleagues in reintroducing, “Our country is fortunate incredible individuals who volunteer to serve our military and are willing to risk their lives to defend it,”, “[N]o other military toxic exposure incident in our history has been documented nor studied as thoroughly as Camp Lejeune,”, You can read the text of the Janey Ensminger Act of 2019, You can read a one-pager summarizing the legislation, Request A Note From Thom: Special Recognitions, Signup for Updates on COVID-19 Information, Senators Continue Bipartisan Fight for Victims of Camp Lejeune Toxic Exposure, https://www.tillis.senate.gov/2019/5/senators-continue-bipartisan-fight-for-victims-of-camp-lejeune-toxic-exposure. “If you ever met her during these times and you sat and talked with her, you wouldn’t know that she was in the pain that she was in,” he said. Following class-action lawsuits, the federal government authorized more than $2 billion in payments to affected veterans, but that doesn’t make it easy. “My daughter started playing volleyball at college — I just went to every game she had and just kept moving. Mike Stevans is one veteran, but not the only one, in the greater Cortland area dealing decades later with his time spent at Camp Lejeune. “They were kind of learning as we were learning as to what needed to be done, but the process took so long.”. “And I had the rules right by the saw,” Stevans said, but just a second’s lapsed concentration. He doesn’t tell the ugly stories, either. Tremors came, and now memory loss and “some cognitive changes” have been added to his symptoms. Same with the owls, except the one Sharon Stevans specifically ordered from her husband. Legislation has been passed by Congress to compensate these veterans for solvent neurotoxicity. The night he was laying mines and called over to another soldier, only to find out he was a North Vietnamese soldier (no shooting involved) stands out. Aaron is in the anger stages of it all, Laura said. Many of them are there just for short periods during their training. We’ve now got to do our part to help those suffering from illnesses by providing the quality medical care and benefits they’re owed.”, “I’m proud to join my colleagues in reintroducing The Janey Ensminger Act and standing on the side of veterans who have been suffering from various cancers and diseases after being poisoned at Camp Lejeune,” Senator Rubio said. Public Service. Specifically, from 1953 to 1987, everyone living or working at United States Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in North Carolina was exposed to a variety of toxins in the water. Teal Barn Farms. 1 thing on the list is the leukemia she got.”. He is still coping. It’s been almost a year and a half since Diane Tedesco died from leukemia stemming from her training at Camp Lejeune. It’s not covered by the VA benefits. “They really need to take care of people quicker — sooner rather than later,” he said. He sleeps on a single mattress downstairs. You may have other mental and physical conditions that are also considered service-connected – apply for those at the same time. Mike Stevans’ doctors say his neurological troubles are likely linked to his duty as a Marine at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, decades ago, and its contaminated water. The ducks line the living room shelves. “They could not do surgery due to the fact that it was already stage 4,” said Laura Boggs-Morehouse, Aaron’s wife and Roger’s daughter-in-law. He joined the Marine Corps in 1964 at 17. Years later, the problems arrived. NjBigfoot . Sharon Stevans displays some of the handmade wooden owls and ducks made by her husband, Mike Stevans. Water contamination at Camp Lejeune existed for decades and exposed thousands of people to serious health risks. Service members living on the base at the time, along with their families, were unknowingly drinking contaminated water, as well as cooking with it, bathing in it, and washing their clothes in it. “She was a Navy corpsman and she was stationed at Camp Lejeune to go through the Marine training to become a field corpsman back in 1987, that’s how she came into contact with the water.”. “He started stumbling, not so much tripping over his feet, but tipping over. Owls, too. Active duty, reserve, and National Guard members who served at Camp Lejeune or MCAS New River, N.C. for a minimum of 30 days … Related Pages. Veterans with the below illnesses who served at Camp Lejeune are eligible for VA disability benefits. He and Sharon Stevans have been dealing with it for years — giving them insight they’re willing to share with others, but still less time than Cortland County’s veterans service officer, Tom Tedesco, grieving a wife lost to leukemia. “It breaks our hearts that the veterans have risked their lives, that they’ve fought for this country and even though they come back they’re still dying for it,” Laura Boggs-Morehouse said. Senators Richard Burr (R-NC), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Jon Tester (D-MT), Marco Rubio (R-FL), and Ben Cardin (D-MD) have introduced S. 1563, The Janey Ensminger Act of 2019, to ensure individuals with diseases scientifically linked to toxic chemical exposure at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina receive proper medical care from the Veterans Administration (VA). You can read a one-pager summarizing the legislation here. Laura has put her efforts and paralegal skills into getting prostate cancer recognized by the Veterans Affairs Department as an illness that could have been caused by Camp LeJeune’s contaminated water. Military EM in Okinawa exposed to contaminated defoliated dioxin herbicide. “He started by falling,” Sharon Stevans said. Sharon Stevans initially suspected exposure to Agent Orange, but when she looked into it, she discovered the water issue at Camp Lejeune. News & Media Website. “There’s no question that veterans and their families at Camp Lejeune were wrongfully exposed to harmful conditions. She spent two months there. The ducks and owls are still works of art, with hand-scribed feathers and are painted to match the breed. The contamination of drinking water at Camp Lejeune started in the early 1950s, and the most contaminated wells were shut down in 1985. “It doesn’t seem right and it’s not fair.”. He became a Veterans Affairs officer and joined Cortland County in January. Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Benefits Legal Help. He’s mad at the insurance companies for not paying for a blood test that could have detected the cancer earlier. The Navy’s announcement Thursday that it would deny 4,400 claims from Marines and their families who say contaminated water at Camp Lejeune caused cancers and … Today, a neurological disorder he attributes to his time as a U.S. Marine stationed at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, limits him to hand tools. Diane Tedesco had been a nurse and earned more than her husband, but had to quit when she grew too sick. The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR)and theCommunity Assistance Panel (CAP) invite you to two public meetings Tuesday, Sept. 1 at 9:00 a.m. ETandSaturday, Sept. 19 at 9:00 a.m. He still walks when he can, with braces on his legs. Senators Richard Burr (R-NC), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Jon Tester (D-MT), Marco Rubio (R-FL), and Ben Cardin (D-MD) have introduced S. 1563, The Janey Ensminger Act of 2019, to ensure individuals with diseases scientifically linked to toxic chemical exposure at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina receive proper medical care from the Veterans Administration (VA). It's also the site of what may be the largest water contamination in … Less realistic, but more artsy, she said. Roger went through chemo and radiation to slow the spread of the cancer. Roger has so much he wants to do, but doesn’t have enough time, Aaron Morehouse said. “We did get approval for some other things related to the military, so he wasn’t totally denied, but the issues related to Camp Lejeune — they denied that they were related to the water,” she said. “It’s unacceptable that they are uncertain about their medical coverage and they deserve prompt medical care.”, “Our country is fortunate incredible individuals who volunteer to serve our military and are willing to risk their lives to defend it,” said Senator Cardin. He used to build pianos. When they did begin filling out the paperwork, it took forever. “Our Service members and their families should not be subjected to toxic substances and conditions while living and working on U.S. military installations. Many Camp Lejeune veterans and their families have waited, suffered, and yes even died waiting for this scientific evidence, they shouldn’t need to wait any longer for the help they deserve.”. “That’s how we did it.”. “She passed away because her immune system was shot still because of all the treatments she had to go through to save her life,” he said. To be added to the Camp Lejeune Historic . ET. “If you ask Dad how he’s doing with things, he says ‘I’m OK.’ I think he’s just trying to deal with it in his own way. Roger Morehouse of Cortland doesn’t sleep in his bedroom because he can’t make it up the stairs. Roger Morehouse has stage 4 prostate cancer, which his children believe is from his four years stationed at Camp LeJeune from 1972 to 1976, minus a brief stint in the Mediterranean. “I only know what she’s told me,” said Tom Tedesco. In the meantime, his problems mean he can no longer use power tools for his woodworking hobby. It kind of got slowed down and stopped when the country shut down.”. “Because it was so new to the VA, a lot of it was fresh for every veterans officer filing these claims, so they really didn’t know a lot about it,” Tedesco said. “Providing these veterans and their affected family members with the medical care they both need and have earned should not be up for debate. By Shenandoah Briere, Local, News. “I think he wanted to spend whatever time he had left not feeling like crap,” Laura Boggs-Morehouse said. July 2019 CAMP LEJEUNE: PAST WATER CONTAMINATION From the 1950s through the 1980s, people serving or living at the U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, were potentially exposed to drinking water contaminated with industrial solvents, benzene, and other chemicals. What Are the Camp Lejeune Presumptive Conditions? Local Business. Two decades later, she was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia. As part of VA’s ongoing commitment to provide quality care to Veterans, the Department of Veterans Affairs has established a presumption of service connection for eight diseases associated with exposure to contaminants in the water supply at Camp Lejeune, N.C. He has a wheelchair for longer distances. To provide for recovery by individuals who were stationed, lived, or worked at Camp Lejeune, for certain actions of omissions by the United States. “He has a long list of stuff he wants to do but it’s a matter of his ability to do it,” Aaron Morehouse said, including building a screened area at his home where his cats could run. He decided to stop chemo in February. 6 talking about this. Cassandra Crosby, Claims Advocate Updated: May 6, 2020 Camp LeJeune Water Contamination Explained Over 1 million military personnel and their family members were stationed at the US Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in North Carolina between 1953 and 1987. They’ve minimized it, they’ve swept it under the rug, they’ve denied most of the applications for health assistance from the families and the Marines.”. “I asked how do you get CML? “Much of the science is already in and more is coming in future study reports. “I went back to Wisconsin and visited family again and that helped,” he said. From 1966 until 1968 he served mostly at Camp Lejeune. One way is by helping others. “The slogan for the Marine Corps is Semper Fi — Always Faithful,” Sharon Stevans said. VA has adopted a presumptive service connection for military service members exposed to contaminants in the Lejeune water supply who later developed one the following diseases: Adult leukemia; Aplastic anemia and other myelodysplastic syndromes; Bladder cancer; Kidney cancer; Liver cancer; Multiple myeloma “I am working on trying to do some research to file a case with our local person. Organization. She tried to sign him up for Veterans Affairs services related to Camp Lejeune in 2018; he was denied in 2019. Find commonly asked questions and answers … “The money wasn’t going to save her life, that was just compensation mentally for her.”. She needed an advocate, so now she’s willing to be one for the Morehouses. In most discussions in the media regarding Camp Lejeune water contamination, often the focus is given only to 4 core chemicals – TCE, PCE, benzene and vinyl chloride. A few weeks later, her coverage was approved. In GovTrack.us, a database of bills in the U.S. Congress. “The Marine Corps was supposed to have sent out letters to everybody — 900,000 people that were affected by this,” she said. If you have qualifying service at Camp Lejeune and a current … Mike Stevans has little regard for the scars of war. “My daughter doesn’t have any student loans,” Mike Stevans said. When he was diagnosed in February 2016, the cancer had metastasized with a golf ball-sized tumor embedded in the spine that broke several vertebrae. Attend via online livestream or teleconference call to learn more about ATSDR studies of the potential health … “He’s planning it, I’m just going to be the labor building it.”. He felt like his legs weren’t connected to his brain anymore and he would just fall.”. The VA care has been good, she said, but the hardest part is trying to get through the bureaucracy. Thursday, February 18, 2016. The military disagrees. “For her, mentally, it was horrible, as it is for anyone going through this,” Tom Tedesco said. Power tool accident. Is it hereditary? “The Janey Ensminger Act of 2019 prioritizes science over politics and trusts the federal government’s independent scientific experts outside of the VA with decisions about medical coverage to ensure that every Camp Lejeune veteran gets the care they need and deserve.”, “If our servicemembers are exposed to toxic substances in the line of duty, it’s our duty to ensure they get the best care possible,” Senator Tester said. Anger, mostly, for which he got some counseling. The legislation was previously introduced in 2017. In June 2017, an expert in Camp Lejeune water contamination found that the Veteran’s prostate cancer was less likely than not “caused by or a result of his relatively brief exposure.” Specifically, the expert noted that the Veteran was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2011 at the age of 46, 26 years after being at Camp Lejeune. The couple is leaning on friends and each other, but the hardest part remains, “knowing that time is running out,” Aaron Morehouse said. Perhaps it’s a conscious choice, perhaps not. Woodenscreened night lights, too, with careful attention to detail and heavy use of power tools. The stories on this site represent only a portion of the local journalism you'll find in each day's edition of the Cortland Standard.

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