Posted in April 2013 

Jean smallerWe have been touched by asbestos in individual ways, yet we are joined together by a bond of community. As a testament to the strength of our global family, the 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 Jean, as shared by her daughter Ann, 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.

“It Won’t Stop Until They Are Jailed for Murder” – Jean’s Story

Name: Jean

Location: Pennsylvania

Date of Birth: 20-JUL-1935

Date of Diagnosis: 09-JUL-2007

Date of Death: 04-JUN-2008

Treatment: Pleurodesis to prevent filling of lung, Alimta and Carboplatin every 21 days times 3 sessions. Radiation treatments to shrink tumors that appeared at her biopsy and chest tube sites.

How has asbestos changed your life? My beautiful mother, age 71, totally healthy, a tennis player, walked 3 miles per day, a health fanatic, was gone in 10 months from a disease we had never heard of. She was exposed to asbestos 40 years earlier by shaking and washing my father’s work clothes. CT scans and X-rays were all negative. Biopsy showed what was causing her lung to fill. Being a RN, I thought we had an advantage to fight this, with me caring for her. I took a leave from work and began the battle. I never felt so alone in my life. I was fighting the battle alone. The doctors didn’t offer many options or hope, just comfort.

It’s too hard to accept, because of the injustice of her death and all the others who have passed or are still fighting. I lost my Mum, my best friend, my traveling partner, the person who knew me best. I now tell my story to anyone I can. I wear some of my Mum’s cremated ashes in a necklace and show it when I talk of her death. It makes such an impact on people, which is what we need to stop this madness. Fines imposed on the manufacturers of these product do nothing. It won’t stop until they are jailed for murder.

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