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Letter from Pompano, Florida

Note: The following letter was posted on the Chem-tox forum on July 27, 1997 from Patti Rentz from Pompano, Florida.


I live on the S.E. coast of Florida in Broward Co. I have a cyber-friend that lived in Ca. She died two week-ends ago. Two weeks before she died she e-mailed me about her concern for me living in Florida with all the Malathion spraying going on. This is what she wrote me and I quote:

"I've studied the medfly/malathion problem since I was caught in Los Angeles on a business trip in Jan. 1990 during medfly/malathion spraying, precipitating my illness. The Immunologist who diagnosed the Leukemia and Multiple Chemical Sensitivity attributed both to that exposure. I had a reaction to fragrance products from that time. I had been quite healthy until that exposure. It's absolutely outrageous that a pesticide, a nerve gas, is being sprayed on Florida citizens. At the very least the state should be using backpack sprays on the ground in trees where the medfly is found. Ideally, sterile medflies should be released and crops should be mixed rather than grown as single crops. Are you in the sprayed area? If so, you really must get out, as impossible as it may seem."

Two weeks later she entered a hospital with complications from the Leukemia and died. She had been a vibrant, healthy and very active person prior to her exposure to Malathion spraying in 1990.

Patricia Rentz ( )

Chem-Tox Comments: Thank you Patti for sharing this with us, it is so important that others hear about those who suffer or die from agricultural chemicals. This way they are not forgotten and others will hopefully learn from their suffering. As an additional note, there have been other reported cases of malathion exposure resulting in leukemia. In a study reported in the journal Teratogenesis, Carcinogenesis, and Mutagenesis, 7:527, 1987, Dr. Samuel Epstein and David Ozonoff listed a case in the U.S. District Court, West Michigan, (Case No. K-83149-CAB-NP) where an individual exposed to malathion then developed leukemia.

As Patti's letter is of such significance, it has been given its own web address. If anyone would like for others to read this please send them an email and include the address as Maybe Bob Crawford should get a hundred or two. Notice how the address is blue - many people do not realize that when you include a full web address in your email to someone, it will turn blue and serve as a "clickable" link to the address.