Posted in March 2012

We have been touched by asbestos in individual ways, yet we are joined together by a common bond of community. As a testament to the strength of our global family, Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) is highlighting the courageous stories of our members with the “Share Your Story” feature on our website.

This week, we would like to honor the story of Gene, as shared by his daughter, Stephanie, who is a part of our ADAO family.

We encourage you to submit your personal stories by clicking here and following the simple instructions on the page. In sharing, comes healing. Remember, you are not alone.


Name: Gene

Date of Birth: 17-OCT

State: LA

Date of 1st Symptoms: 12-NOV-2011

Date of Diagnosis: 12-JAN-2012

Diagnosis: pericardial mesothelioma

Status: Deceased

Treatment: None

How has Asbestos changed your life? (unedited): My father started feeling bad in mid-September of 2011.  He put it off as being an upper respiratory infection.  The following week he went to the doctor because he wasn’t getting better.  He was admitted into the hospital because his heart was in a-fib.  The hospital ran tests and could not find anything wrong.  This went on for the next 5-6 weeks.  On Sunday, November 6, 2011, he went back to the emergency room due to having difficulty breathing.  From there he was admitted to Oschner’s Hospital.  There he was told that the lining around his heart had thickened and needed to be removed.  They told him that would fix the problem.  So he had the surgery on Wednesday, November 9, 2011.  He did fine until the evening of Friday, November 11, 2011. He started having problem breathing and asked to be put on the ventilator to help him breathe better. Several hours later we get a phone call to get to the hospital as soon as we can.  When we got there; he had already coded.  He ended up coding a total of 5 times. The doctors told us that we had to make a decision. So we decided to take him off the machines and leave him in peace.  During that horrible time we were told that the biopsy results from his surgery were in. We were told that the results were that the lining removed was cancerous but didn’t know what kind. As a family, we decided that we wanted an autopsy done to see what went wrong.  My dad was in excellent shape.  He went to work the  Friday before going back to the hospital on Nov. 6.  Two months after he passed, we got the results of the autopsy.  It read that he passed away from pericardial mesothelioma.  If it weren’t for the autopsy, they would have put the cause of death as heart failure.  There was nothing wrong with his heart.  My dad was full of life.  He always had a smile on his face and would do anything for anybody.  He was a public official here in Terrebonne Parish for 40 years.  Many loved him!