Camp Lejeune Cancers Caused by Contaminated Water
Posted on Tuesday, June 14th, 2022
From 1953 to 1987, U.S. Marines and their families were lied to while they drank and bathed in toxic water at U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune. When they complained about the taste and smell of the water, they were told that the flavor was caused by healthy minerals from the nearby mountains. What they were really drinking was dry cleaning chemicals, contaminants from gun cleaners, and other cancer-causing waste that was flowing freely into camp water wells.
For years, an alarmingly high rate of stillbirths and birth defects occurred at the base – so many that a large section of the nearby cemetery was dubbed “baby heaven.” When that section of the cemetery was filled, another section was added. Then another.
Children were not the only victims. Marines, their family members, and civilian contractors continue to develop deadly cancers, Parkinson’s disease, and other serious illnesses linked to the contaminants that flowed freely into camp wells. Like ticking time bombs, these toxins, including TCEs, PCEs, vinyl chloride, and benzene, remain in the body for years. At any time, including decades later, they can be triggered to mutate the cells and become cancer, Parkinson’s disease, or other deadly diseases.
Perhaps the worst part of it all is that the Veterans Administration, the Department of Defense, and even lawmakers covered up their crime for years. Then, when veterans groups began to speak out, they created legislation to avoid accountability. Lawmakers altered North Carolina’s strict 10-year statute of repose, which meant Marines and their families could not sue the government and seek justice.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) saved face by saying they would cover these veterans’ medical bills, yet they denied the claims of tens of thousands of veterans.
Camp Lejeune Justice Act
Change is happening. OnderLaw is one of less than a handful of law firms that put our money where our mouth is. We’ve been fighting for the rights of those hurt by big corporations for years, and now we’re taking on the government on behalf of veterans, their families, and civilian workers.
OnderLaw invested more than a million dollars to draft the Camp Lejeune Justice Act and to educate lawmakers about its importance. Once signed into law – a move that appears imminent – the act will allow veterans, military families, and civilian staff who worked or lived at Camp Lejeune from 1953 until 1987 an opportunity to financially recover some of what they lost.
Have you or your family suffered from cancer, Parkinson’s disease, a birth injury or miscarriage after living or working at Camp Lejeune?
We’ll stand with you.
Call the OnderLaw team for a free, no-obligation consultation. Our Camp Lejeune lawyers can help.
Who is Eligible for Compensation through the Camp Lejeune Justice Act?
You may be eligible for compensation through the Camp Lejeune Justice Act if:
- You or a family member was stationed at, living at, or working at Camp Lejeune betweenAugust 1, 1953 to December 31, 1987 for 30 days or more; and
- You or a family member was diagnosed with cancer months or years after living or working on base; or
- You or your child was diagnosed with birth defects, leukemia, low birth weight, or other birth or in utero malformations; or
- You are a woman who miscarried a pregnancy or suffered infertility during or after your time on the base.
What if I was Diagnosed with Cancer Many Years Later?
The effects of exposure to toxic chemicals often take years to develop. Many studies show that exposure for more than 30 days puts you at increased risk for these problems, including cancers, Parkinson’s disease, and other terrible conditions, for the rest of your life. These chemicals cause illness even decades later. You are still eligible for compensation.
What if I already Receive Disability or other VA Benefits?
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act provides for lump sum compensation regardless of any other benefits you receive. It will NOT affect your other benefits.
What if I was at Camp Lejeune after 1987 and was Diagnosed with Cancer?
You may still be eligible for compensation under a different lawsuit. Call us. We’ll discuss your situation and decide together if you have a claim.
If you believe you may qualify for compensation, our Camp Lejeune cancer lawyers at OnderLaw can help. We have built a solid reputation taking on some of the biggest corporations in the world, and we are not intimidated by the government’s attempts to shortchange our veterans.
We can help. Call us for a free, no obligation consultation. We stand for those who stand for us.
What kinds of cancers or injuries are eligible for Camp Lejeune lawsuit compensation?
At this time, we are not omitting any cancer diagnosis from our eligibility criteria. We believe the toxins that veterans and military families were exposed to may have had far-reaching effects, beyond what the government has admitted. This could change as the litigation evolves.
If you have been diagnosed with cancer following your residence or assignment at Camp Lejeune, call the Camp Lejeune Cancer Claims lawyers at OnderLaw.
Some of the toxic water-related diagnoses at Camp Lejeune include but are NOT limited to:
- bladder cancer
- breast cancer
- esophageal cancer
- hepatic steatosis
- kidney cancer
- lung cancer
- appendix cancer
- brain cancer
- bile duct cancer
- colorectal cancer
- gallbladder cancer
- intestinal cancer
- pancreatic cancer
- sinus cancer
- soft tissue sarcoma
- spinal cancer
- multiple myeloma
- myelodysplastic syndromes
- non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL)
- Parkinson’s disease
- prostate cancer
- any other cancer
- renal toxicity (kidney failure)
- female infertility
Injuries infants and children sustained include:
- birth defects
- low birth weight
- other malformations
Did you or a family member suffer from any of the above injuries or other cancers following a work or residential assignment at North Carolina’s Camp Lejeune? We can help.
for a free, no obligation consultation.
What Chemicals were in Camp Lejeune Water?
The pollutants identified in Camp Lejeune water include:
- trichloroethylene (TCE) – solvent used for cleaning munitions
- tetrachloroethylene (PCE) – solvent used in a nearby dry-cleaning facility that cleaned millions of uniforms
- vinyl chloride (VC) – chemical that results when TCE and PCE degrade in groundwater
- benzene – used to make chemicals found in plastics, resins, and nylon and other synthetic fibers.
All of these chemicals are colorless and deadly, and they should never be consumed.
Why Didn’t the DOD Fix the Lejeune Water Problem?
Many people, including veterans’ organizations that have been fighting for justice for Camp Lejeune Marines for decades, insist that the military knew of the pollution for many years before it quietly began closing the most contaminated wells in the mid- to late-1980s. What’s more, many insist that, even after that time, contamination persisted in some active wells. There is reason to believe this is true, but unfortunately, there is no mechanism to allow those who lived or worked on the base later than 1987.
We often believe that those in power will do what is right, but we have seen and experienced enough to know that, often, this is not the case. Those in charge likely thought they could remain quiet and pass the torch to the next commander or the next administration. It’s not fair. It’s not right. And it’s not the America you or your family members fought to defend.
In 2017, Congress passed the VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act, which made it easier for those who wanted to do the right thing. Since then, the VA has begun to change its unethical and outdated ways. There is still much work to do, but veterans’ health issues, including those resulting from toxic exposure to Camp Lejeune water, are starting to be addressed.
You deserve better.
You deserve justice.
Call OnderLaw for a free, no-obligation consultation.
Camp Lejeune Justice Act
Fortunately for more than a million people who were exposed to Camp Lejeune’s toxins, change is on its way.
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act is a critical piece in righting the wrongs that have been done to veterans and their families for decades. It will likely cost the government billions dollars to resolve. However, it was the government who created the problem, and it is the government’s duty to solve it.
No amount of money can make up for the loss of a loved one or the cost of a life-changing injury. We believe that recognition of and compensation for the government’s wrong actions is the least that should happen in order to honor those who have made such great sacrifices on our behalf.
Until we get justice for Camp Lejeune, its former residents — the Marines suffering from Parkinson’s disease and cancer, the babies who died in birth, the many couples who lost children during or after birth —will be living legacies of government negligence and incompetence.
We are standing with U.S. Marines, military families, and civilian staff to make it right. Stand with us.
Call OnderLaw for a free, no-obligation consultation.
The Overholt Law Firm, PC, 2505 College Rd, Wilmington, NC 28412 in association with OnderLaw, LLC is responsible for this ad. OnderLaw attorneys are not licensed to practice in North Carolina. Any and all potential Camp Lejeune Justice Act claims and causes of action that OnderLaw, LLC may investigate and pursue are strictly limited to federal law tort claims exclusively created under the Camp Lejeune Justice Act, and OnderLaw, LLC will not pursue any North Carolina state law claims or causes of action. OnderLaw, LLC attorneys are licensed to practice law in the states of Missouri, Illinois, Kansas, Tennessee, Florida, and California.
The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements. Past results afford no guarantee of future results. Every case is different and must be judged on its own merits. OnderLaw is located at 110 E. Lockwood, St. Louis, MO 63119.