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Hugging my dad gave me terminal cancer..
Debra Brewer has been diagnosed with the asbestos-related condition
mesothelioma, a form of lung cancer.
The 47-year-old's father, Phillip Northmore, worked as a lagger at
Devonport Dockyard in Plymouth for five years in the 1960s when she
was a child.
An inquest into his death in August 2006 found he had died from small
cell lung cancer, which was linked to asbestos.
Mrs Brewer said she remembered he would always arrive home from
work covered in dust but as a young child she never imagined that as
she played with her dad, the dust he was coated in could be
John Messham, industrial disease specialist at Debra's solicitor Bond
Pearce, said: "Mesothelioma causes a great deal of suffering to its
victims and their families.
"Asbestos diseases are potentially fatal and so it vital that such cases
are dealt with efficiently but also with sympathy and compassion.
"What makes Debra's case so poignant is that she has never to her
knowledge been exposed to asbestos dust in any other way. Her only
exposure was from her father."
Mr Messham said he had spoken to other woman who had come
forward who were married to workers and had been exposed to
asbestos and now had an asbestos-related disease.
"Most have never knowingly come into contact with asbestos other than
through washing clothes," he said. "It is a terrible shock for the families
involved and I am seeing more and more inquiries of this nature."
Mrs Brewer said she first started having breathing difficulties in 1994 but
was not diagnosed with mesothelioma until November last year. Her
condition is terminal.
It is understood cases of mesothelioma, cancer of the lining of the lung,
can lie dormant for 40 years before surfacing.
Mrs Brewer is to make the compensation claim from the MoD through her
solicitor, for general damages for pain and suffering.
She said she felt "a lot of anger" at developing the disease. "Not towards
my dad because he didn't know. None of this is his fault," she said.
"Anger that my future has been taken away, I have got three children
and I expect to be there for them, and I don't know if I am going to be.
That's very hard to deal with."
An MoD spokesman said: "Once a claim has been made we have a very
good record in paying compensation quickly where we have a liability."
Credits to Daily Telegraph 15th Feb. 2007
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