With over 14,000 claims already filed and thousands more coming, the Camp Lejeune litigation is expected to be one of the largest mass litigations in history. A recent CBS report has cast a light on one of the many stories of individuals seeking justice for injuries suffered from exposure to toxic water at the North Carolina base. 

The report highlights the story of Bruno Texeira, a Marine veteran who worked in the Camp Lejeune mess hall for three months in 1986. Texeira worked with the base’s water every day and noticed that the water had “a strange taste and smell.” Texeira went on to suffer a severe stroke in 2015 that his doctor attributed to his exposure to the contaminated water. However, the Department of Veterans Affairs denied his disability claim, claiming that he did not have “maximum exposure” to the contaminated water. The VA investigator assigned to his claim never spoke to or examined him.

Despite Evidence, Government Slow to Acknowledge Contamination

We now know that water at Camp Lejeune was contaminated from 1953-1987. The government never acknowledged any issues with the water until well after most of the polluted wells were shut down in the late 1980s. This is despite years of tests showing alarmingly high amounts of contaminants in the base’s water supply. A few examples include:

  • In May 1982, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry says measurements of the contaminant trichloroethylene were found to be over 280 times the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) maximum recommended level.
  • In February 1985, the dry-cleaning solvent PCE measured at over 43 times the EPA’s maximum recommended levels in the water supply at Tawara Terrace, one of Camp Lejeune’s main housing units.

Both chemicals are considered to be toxic to humans when ingested in large quantities. The EPA finally listed Camp Lejeune as a Superfund site in 1989 and the government has slowly begun to acknowledge the impact the contaminated water had on Marines, their families, and other base workers during the contamination period. The number of individuals exposed to the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune is currently estimated at as many as one million. 

In March 2017, the Department of Veterans Affairs announced that veterans, former reservists, and former National Guard members who served at Camp Lejeune for no less than 30 days (consecutive or nonconsecutive) from August 1, 1953 through December 31, 1987, and were diagnosed with any of the 8 associated diseases listed below were presumed to have been injured due to the water contamination and entitled to VA benefits.  

Previously presumptive injuries included: 

  • Adult leukemia 
  • Aplastic anemia and other myelodysplastic syndromes  
  • Bladder cancer 
  • Kidney cancer 
  • Liver cancer 
  • Multiple myeloma 
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma 
  • Parkinson’s disease  

But that list left out many of the injuries that veterans suffered at Camp Lejeune due to the contaminated water. And because of that, many Marines and their family members continued to suffer with other diseases stemming from their service at Camp Lejeune for which there was no benefit entitlement.   

Thankfully, recent legislation has opened up the possibility for those Marines and their families to finally receive justice.  The recently passed PACT Act is now providing long-overdue benefits and compensation for military service members who were harmed by exposure to toxic chemicals and developed other significant conditions related to that exposure. The expanded number of presumptive conditions that are now assumed to have been caused by toxic chemical exposure during military service will now create benefit entitlement to many Marines and their families previously denied access to justice and will allow more veterans to receive compensation faster. 

The additional injuries now presumed linked to Camp Lejeune service and exposure include:


  • Brain cancer  
  • Gastrointestinal cancers 
  • Glioblastoma  
  • Head cancers 
  • Lymphatic cancers 
  • Lymphomas 
  • Melanoma  
  • Neck cancer 
  • Pancreatic cancer  
  • Reproductive cancers 
  • Respiratory (breathing-related) cancers 


  • Asthma that was diagnosed after military service  
  • Chronic bronchitis  
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) 
  • Chronic rhinitis  
  • Chronic sinusitis 
  • Constrictive bronchiolitis or obliterative bronchiolitis  
  • Emphysema  
  • Granulomatous disease 
  • Interstitial lung disease (ILD)  
  • Pleuritis  
  • Pulmonary fibrosis  
  • Sarcoidosis 

Minnesota's Camp Lejeune Lawyers

If you or a loved one was exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune and suffered one of the injuries listed above, contact the Minnesota Camp Lejeune Specialists at GoldenbergLaw today. Our Minneapolis attorneys have over 37 years of experience helping victims of toxic exposure get the justice they deserve. You need lawyers who understand the intricacies of contamination cases and won’t back down from a fight. Contact GoldenbergLaw’s Minneapolis Camp Lejeune lawyers today for a free case consultation.