"Camp Lejeune, a sprawling Marine base on the North Carolina seaboard, is the site of what some scientists call the worst public drinking-water contamination in the nation's history. Its water wells were tainted with cancer-causing industrial compounds for 30 years, ending in 1987.
An estimated 500,000 to 1 million people -- including Marines and family living on base housing -- drank, bathed and cooked using that fouled water.
Congress has dubbed ill Marines 'poisoned patriots,' and in 2008 lawmakers ordered the Marine Corps to notify those who might have been exposed.
So far, almost 10,000 affected Floridians have registered with the Marine Coprs to take part in a health study, the highest total for any state except North Carolina. About 1,500 claims have been filed against the government seeking $33.8-billion in damages."
William R. Levesque reports for the St. Petersburg Times May 31, 2009.