Could the Acreage fall victim to cancer cluster?

By Emily Pantelides - bio | email
Posted by Rachel Leigh - email

PALM BEACH COUNTY, FL (WFLX) - First, we heard there was a strange coincidence in the Acreage area - neighbors within three miles of each other all with kids who had some form of brain cancer. Now, we've learned the numbers have grown, and it's not just neighbors and kids getting these forms of cancer. And the sad fact is some have already died.

Paulett's daughter, Kristina, was 16 when she doctors diagnosed her with brain cancer. "It was malignant, and she had to have six weeks of radiation."

At 5 years old, the Dunsford family's son, Garrett, was also diagnosed with brain cancer. "The tumor is still in there. There's a piece still left."

Debbie's healthy 47-year-old husband died of a brain tumor in 2005. "We still want an answer."

Richards 5-year-old daughter, Courtney, has an aracnoid cyst on her brain, and Tracy's daughter, Jessica, survived her orange-sized brain tumor, but has another new cyst.

That's six people who all live within three miles of each other who all have been touched by forms of brain cancer. Is this a coincidence or something more?

"When Kristin was diagnosed, I thought, 'Oh, it's cancer. It was a fluke, but then I met other parents, and, it's like, I never heard of this before. Now, I'm hearing about it all over the place," said one mom.

Another added, "Every time I turn around, I am hearing someone with something tumor related."

So, Jennifer and her husband decided to spearhead this group and start looking for a cause. "Is it in the air is it the soil?"

Jennifer just started a count. She says, in her area alone, 11 adults and 10 kids have some form of neurological cancer. "I'm looking for answers. Is this a coincidence, is this a fluke, or is this a cluster?"

"I need someone to tell me that we don't have something in common."

"We want it ruled out that it's not our area."

We have learned State Represenative Carl Domino is looking into this issue, and if it might be something in the water.

The Dunsford family has already had their water tested twice. Their third test is expected back Wednesday. We will give you the results then.

Meanwhile, these parents are asking for your help. For the state to start a cancer cluster investigation these neighbors need to compile a final list of people with cancer in the area by June 30. To add your name to the list or talk to Jennifer e-mail at