camp lejeune water contamination 2019

Were you stationed at Camp Lejeune, N.C. for at least 30 days between August 1, 1953 and December 31, 1987? The base is like a small city. Veterans and families exposed Camp LeJeune was established in 1942 as a Marine Corps military base in Jacksonville, NC. I recently served as an expert witness regarding a Camp LeJeune veteran. When they did begin filling out the paperwork, it took forever. “The VA claims process takes a long time and I don’t know why it takes that long and that’s for anything, not just Camp Lejeune.”. In the 1980s, contaminants were found in several wells that provided drinking water at Camp Lejeune, N.C. What Are the Camp Lejeune Presumptive Conditions? Our veterans and families who are exposed to such conditions deserve to receive the appropriate benefits and care from the Department of Veteran’s Affairs. 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. He doesn’t tell the ugly stories, either. “The Marine Corps was supposed to have sent out letters to everybody — 900,000 people that were affected by this,” she said. He was sent to Vietnam in 1965, returning in 1966. He still walks when he can, with braces on his legs. How do you get this because it was just out of the blue?” Tom Tedesco said. “He can’t stand for very long.”. “I only know what she’s told me,” said Tom Tedesco. Two decades later, she was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia. She tried to sign him up for Veterans Affairs services related to Camp Lejeune in 2018; he was denied in 2019. He’s mad at the insurance companies for not paying for a blood test that could have detected the cancer earlier. April 11, 2020 Sharon Stevans initially suspected exposure to Agent Orange, but when she looked into it, she discovered the water issue at Camp Lejeune. NjBigfoot . “They were kind of learning as we were learning as to what needed to be done, but the process took so long.”. The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ASTDR) has determined a number of cancers and other diseases found in individuals who lived at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina between 1953 and 1987 are scientifically linked to exposure to contaminated well-water. 6204. 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. He sleeps on a single mattress downstairs. News & Media Website. In the meantime, his problems mean he can no longer use power tools for his woodworking hobby. WASHINGTON – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced today that it … 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). The contamination of drinking water at Camp Lejeune started in the early 1950s and ended in 1985 when highly contaminated water wells were removed from service. Teal Barn Farms. Tremors came, and now memory loss and “some cognitive changes” have been added to his symptoms. Agriculture. Five years later, in 2012, Diane was going through a stem cell transplant in Buffalo when she received a letter from the Marine Corps “stating if you were stationed at Camp Lejeune you could have come into contact with contaminated water and the No. “That’s how we did it.”. VA Plans to Propose Expanded Disability Benefits Eligibility for Veterans Exposed to. ATSDR’s Camp Lejeune studies of people exposed occupationally or environmentally to TCE, PCE, vinyl chloride and benzene. “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. Learn about research on past chemical contamination. “There are multiple lawsuits against the military regarding veterans who got prostate cancer from the camp,” she said. The legislation was previously introduced in 2017. The bill is named for Janey Ensminger, daughter of Master Sergeant Jerry Ensminger, who was born at Camp Lejeune and died as a result of exposure to toxic chemicals. 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 He joined the Marine Corps in 1964 at 17. The VA care has been good, she said, but the hardest part is trying to get through the bureaucracy. A few weeks later, her coverage was approved. Veterans with the below illnesses who served at Camp Lejeune are eligible for VA disability benefits. “My daughter started playing volleyball at college — I just went to every game she had and just kept moving. – Today, U.S. She blamed herself for the costs. 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. “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. 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. “He’s still tired because of the cancer,” even after stopping chemotherapy, said his son Aaron Morehouse. Other scars: His brother died of cancer, perhaps linked to his duty in Iraq, amid burn pits and battlefields laced with depleted uranium. There are 40,000 people living there at any one time. They almost crowd out the medal in the display case. “For her, mentally, it was horrible, as it is for anyone going through this,” Tom Tedesco said. Page created - May 13, 2019. 1 thing on the list is the leukemia she got.”. “[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. 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 … From 1966 until 1968 he served mostly at Camp Lejeune. Active duty, reserve, and National Guard members who served at Camp Lejeune or MCAS New River, N.C. for a minimum of 30 days … 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. Owls, too. She tried to sign him up for Veterans Affairs services related to Camp Lejeune in 2018; he was denied in 2019. It’s been a long road, but Sharon Stevans says they know what’s ahead. “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. “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. Roger has so much he wants to do, but doesn’t have enough time, Aaron Morehouse said. “Well, the Marine Corps and the Navy have not been ever faithful over this issue. Military EM in Okinawa exposed to contaminated defoliated dioxin herbicide. “She got really sick and to save her life they used every steroid under the sun and it killed her immune system,” he said. Camp Lejeune N.C. 50 chemicals in ground water. The Janey Ensminger Act of 2019 requires ASTDR to review every three years the relationships between specific illnesses or conditions reported and time spent at Camp Lejeune, and to determine to what extent they may have been caused by toxic chemical exposure. From the 1950s through the 1980s, people living or working 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. Years later, the problems arrived. The VA is required to provide health care to veterans and their family members suffering from health problems as a result of this toxic chemical exposure, but the agency continues to challenge certain findings, often delaying or denying care. It’s been almost a year and a half since Diane Tedesco died from leukemia stemming from her training at Camp Lejeune. The USA Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune has had an unusual problem with solvent-contaminated water, going back many years. Heroes and Health Issues of 1,000,000 plus Marines Sharon Stevans initially suspected exposure to Agent Orange, but when she looked into it, she discovered the water issue at Camp Lejeune. “He started stumbling, not so much tripping over his feet, but tipping over. 6 talking about this. His own scars, the neurological issues, stem from time at Camp Lejeune, doctors told him. “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. Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) introduced the Camp Lejeune Justice Act, legislation that will provide veterans and their families who are suffering due to water contamination at Camp Lejeune, N.C long-overdue judicial relief. “The Marine Corps was supposed to have sent out letters to everybody — 900,000 people that were affected by this,” she said. The financial burden took a toll, too. Uncertainties related to water contamination and adverse health effects have complicated reimbursements for medical costs and may have impacted the health of subsequent generations. 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). The military disagrees. Diane Tedesco had been a nurse and earned more than her husband, but had to quit when she grew too sick. Camp Lejeune Historic Drinking Water Database The Marine Corps maintains an information database for those who may have been exposed to contaminants in the drinking water at Camp Lejeune between August 1, 1953 and December 31, 1987. Aaron is in the anger stages of it all, Laura said. You can read a one-pager summarizing the legislation here. Health Studies. Those are what he kept; he sold many. The couple is leaning on friends and each other, but the hardest part remains, “knowing that time is running out,” Aaron Morehouse said. “Concentrate on what you’re doing.”. 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. “And I had the rules right by the saw,” Stevans said, but just a second’s lapsed concentration. “Since then he’s continued to deteriorate,” she said. Historically, Camp Lejeune served as one of three boot-camp facilities for the … He became a Veterans Affairs officer and joined Cortland County in January. The ducks line the living room shelves. It’s not covered by the VA benefits. H.R. 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. 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. 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. You can read the text of the Janey Ensminger Act of 2019 here. He felt like his legs weren’t connected to his brain anymore and he would just fall.”. People. 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. He lost three fingers. Roger Morehouse of Cortland doesn’t sleep in his bedroom because he can’t make it up the stairs. “Our Service members and their families should not be subjected to toxic substances and conditions while living and working on U.S. military installations. 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. Same with the owls, except the one Sharon Stevans specifically ordered from her husband. ET. He decided to stop chemo in February. “The money wasn’t going to save her life, that was just compensation mentally for her.”. It also requires ASTDR to publish the classifications on the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) website. Between 1953 and 1987, the Navy and Marine Corps said military personnel like Mike Stevans and civilians were exposed to water contaminated with trichloroethylene, perchloroethylene, benzene, vinyl chloride and other compounds. This chemical exposure may have led to adverse health conditions. “They really need to take care of people quicker — sooner rather than later,” he said. 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. Were you or someone you know at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987? “I think he wanted to spend whatever time he had left not feeling like crap,” Laura Boggs-Morehouse said. “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. Organization. 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. “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. “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. Anger, mostly, for which he got some counseling. 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 is still coping. “The slogan for the Marine Corps is Semper Fi — Always Faithful,” Sharon Stevans said. 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