It’s broken for all the families in the North Charlestown area of New Hampshire that have suffered through blood cancers requiring bone marrow transplants.
Since my diagnosis in April 2006, there have been three other blood cancer diagnosis within a mile radius of my house, all requiring bone marrow transplants. All snatching innocent young people out of commission at the prime of their lives.
Claremont knows of a possible cancer cluster.
Years ago the doctors in Claremont banded together and petitioned the legislature for an epidemiological study of Claremont.
The thought was increased levels of toxins in the air from waste facilities on Grissum Lane were causing increased rates of cancer.
Grissum Lane divides Claremont and Charlestown, NH. I call this area “Clarenoble.” I travel it almost every day.
The study found no increased incidence of cancer in Claremont. It did show increased occurrences of acetaldehyde, arsenic, benzene, chloroform, chromium, 1,2-dicloroethane, & formaldehyde- known carcinogens.
Benzene, specifically, has been linked to leukemia.
The study has since undergone an independent peer review by Dr. Jonathan Levy, Prof. at Harvard School of Public Health and specialist in Environmental Health and Risk Assessment. He determined “the DES used inappropriate logic in reaching the reports overall conclusion that ambient air in Claremont does not represent a health hazard to the general population.”
However, the initial study allowed for the passage of continued air quality permits for the companies in the town of Claremont.
The study didn’t include Charlestown. It didn’t include me, diagnosed at 23 years old with Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
It didn’t include Carol Snelling diagnosed in her 50s with leukemia.
It didn’t include Ashley Jordan diagnosed at 21 years old with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Her Hodgkin’s was also refractory. She also required a bone marrow transplant for a cancer that is 75% curable with the first round of chemotherapy.
It certainly didn’t include Andy diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia at 6 years old who know requires a bone marrow transplant to save his life.
AML is rare in children. I believe it is the same leukemia Carol suffered from. Carol can’t tell me. She died undergoing treatment.
These diagnosis occurred since April 2006.
It doesn’t include Jon, my husband, diagnosed at 28 years old with colon cancer. It doesn’t include Barbara, who is currently undergoing treatment for feminine cancers.
These two are also within a mile radius of the factories in question. They were also diagnosed in the past four years.
I had a nightmare last night about Lynn Ferland, a registered nurse with four children who died in the 90s after three transplants to fight her leukemia.
The factories have been here for twenty years. Twenty possible years of cancers.
I could go on, but I’m too tired.
The knowledge that this is occurring, and I am too sick and too stressed to stop it, is haunting me.
I never want anybody to undergo the pain I have suffered again.
At my best, I would march all over town “Erin Brokavich-style” asking families health care histories and not simply examining death records, which was the evidence used for Claremont physicians to petition the legislature originally.
I don’t want to wait to die before people know my story.
I don’t want anybody else dying or suffering either.
I have written about this previously. Please see Hopefully, someone will hear this and want to take us on as their cause.
There are options for action, writing letters to the editor and local media- Eagle Times, Compass, Valley News, and Keene Sentinel could increase awareness.
Thomas Burack is NH’s Comissioner at the Dept. of Environmental Services. His address is 29 Hazen Dr.; Concord, NH. A full list of employees with their contact information (email and phone numbers) can be found at DES’s website http://des.nh.gov/ under contact us.
The local legislative representative for the affected areas is Bob O’Dell. He is elected to the Energy, Environment, and Economic Development Committee. He can be contacted at: Senate Office: Statehouse 107 NMain St., Room 115 Concord, N.H. 03301 (603) 271-6733 email@example.com Home Office: P.O. Box 23 Lempster, N.H. 03605-0023 (603) 863-9797 firstname.lastname@example.org
See my posting and the comments for more information:http://baldiesblog.blogspot.com/2008/11/clarenoble.html