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Why Is Camp Lejeune Called Camp Lejeune?

Quick Answer

Camp Lejeune, a U.S. Marine Corps Base in North Carolina, was named in honor of Major General John A. Lejeune. Established in 1941, the base has played a significant role in training and deploying Marines for various conflicts. However, in 1982, the discovery of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the drinking water led to a water contamination issue. As a result, those exposed to the contaminated water may be eligible for compensation if they meet certain criteria.


Camp Lejeune, located in North Carolina, is a renowned military training facility that has played a significant role in the history of the United States Marine Corps. Named after Major General John A. Lejeune, who served as the 13th Commandant and Commanding General of the 2nd Army Division during World War I, this base holds great historical significance.

Established in 1941 as an East Coast amphibious training facility for Marines due to its proximity to ports and vast pine forests with miles of beachfront access, Camp Lejeune quickly grew into one of the premier military bases spanning over 244 square miles. It became instrumental not only in preparing troops for combat but also deploying them on various missions around the world.

However, despite its illustrious past and contributions to national security efforts throughout history, Camp Lejeune faced a major setback when it was discovered that drinking water at certain locations within the base had been contaminated by volatile organic compounds (VOCs). This contamination issue tarnished both its reputation and raised serious concerns about potential health risks posed to those living or working there.

The impact caused by this water contamination cannot be understated – potentially affecting up to one million military personnel along with their families residing on or near Camp Lejeune between August 1953 through December 1987. These individuals were unknowingly exposed to harmful substances present within their daily supply of drinking water while serving our country faithfully.

In response to these alarming findings regarding VOC-contaminated water sources at Camp LeJeune’s facilities such as Tarawa Terrace housing area wells #602 & #603; Hadnot Point Industrial Area well; Holcomb Boulevard Water Treatment Plant Supply Wells; French Creek Recreational Vehicle Park Well#4 ; Onslow Beach Housing Areas’ Drinking Water System-Well No.s DWS-5&6 , appropriate measures have since been taken towards addressing accountability issues surrounding this unfortunate incident.

The base has undergone extensive investigations, health studies, and public health assessments conducted by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) to determine the full extent of potential adverse effects on human health caused by exposure to these contaminants. The findings have led to a better understanding of the risks faced by those who were stationed or resided at Camp Lejeune during that period.

While efforts are being made towards remediation and providing support services for affected individuals, it is crucial to raise awareness about this issue so that justice can be served. Victims exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune may qualify for compensation if they meet specific criteria set forth under applicable laws governing such claims.

In subsequent sections of this article, we will delve deeper into the history of Camp Lejeune as well as provide information regarding eligibility requirements for victims seeking compensation due to their exposure while residing or working within its premises. We aim not only shed light on what transpired but also offer guidance in navigating through legal processes associated with obtaining rightful restitution.

History of Camp Lejeune

Camp Lejeune, a U.S. Marine Corps Base located in North Carolina, holds a rich history that dates back to its establishment in 1941. The base is named after Major General John A. Lejeune, the 13th Commandant and Commanding General of the 2nd Army Division during World War I.

Originally known as Marine Barracks Camp Lejeune near the end of 1942, it was later renamed Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in 1944 to honor Major General John A. Lejeune’s contributions and leadership within the military community.

The primary purpose behind establishing this base was to provide Marines with an East Coast amphibious training facility where they could hone their skills for combat operations on land or at sea. With its proximity to ports and vast remote pine forests along miles of beachfront property, Camp Jejue became an ideal location for such purposes.

Over time, Camp Jejue has played a significant role not only in training but also deploying Marines for various conflicts and missions around the world. From peacekeeping efforts to tactical recovery operations; from drug interdiction initiatives to noncombatant evacuation exercises – this military installation has been instrumental throughout history.

In addition to being a hub for comprehensive marine training programs encompassing Military Operations Urban Terrain (MOUT) facilities and live fire ranges among others, Camp Geiger and Camp Johnson are two satellite facilities associated with Camps LeJeune that have their own historical significance. Camp Geiger, named after Colonel Roy M. Geiger, is primarily used for Marine Combat Training (MCT), while Camp Johnson, named in honor of Major General Harold G. Johnson, provides advanced training to the Corps’ logistics personnel as well as the School of Infantry-East (SOI-E).

Today, Camp Lejeune remains one of the most premier military training facilities in the United States, spanning an impressive 244 square miles. It is also home to an active duty, dependent, retiree, and civilian employee population of nearly 150,000 people. The base’s contribution extends beyond its military significance as it plays a vital role in the local economy by generating billions of dollars.

Camp Lejeune has received numerous awards for excellence in installation management over the years and continues to strive towards even greater goals in terms of training efficiency and overall operational effectiveness. Its historical legacy combined with its commitment to serving Marines makes Camp Lejeune an integral part of our nation’s defense infrastructure.

Water Contamination at Camp Lejeune

In 1982, a shocking discovery was made regarding the drinking water at Camp Lejeune. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) were found to be present in the water supply provided by two of the eight water treatment plants on the base. These VOCs posed significant health risks to those who consumed or came into contact with them.

The harmful effects of these VOCs on human health cannot be understated. Exposure to contaminated drinking water has been linked to various serious illnesses and conditions including Parkinson’s disease, kidney cancer, leukemias, liver cancer, bladder cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, multiple myeloma, and many others listed under eligibility criteria for compensation.

Recognizing the severity of this issue and its potential impact on military personnel and their families stationed at Camp Lejeune, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) became involved in assessing both short-term and long-term health effects caused by exposure to these toxic chemicals. The ATSDR conducted extensive studies and public health assessments in order to understand the full extent of the damage caused by the water contamination at Camp LeJeune throughout the years. These efforts have helped shed light on the seriousness of this issue and have provided important insights into its consequences for those affected.

It is important to note that water contamination has been an ongoing problem at Camp LeJeune since its establishment. In addition to the 1982 discovery, it was later revealed that there had been other sources of overall base-wide groundwater pollution from various activities including industrial waste improperly disposed of from dry cleaners, gas stations, and other facilities. This history of frequent exposure to carcinogenic chemicals has prompted ongoing efforts to address and remedy the water contamination problem. Camp LeJeune has implemented measures and protocols in order to prevent further contamination, and continues to strive towards improving the quality of its water.

The water contamination issue at Camp LeJeune has had a profound impact on the lives of those who were exposed to the contaminated drinking water. The base’s history of contamination and ongoing efforts to address this problem highlight the importance of ensuring that affected individuals receive proper support, resources, and compensation for their suffering. It is crucial that we continue raising awareness about this issue in order to provide justice and assistance to all those impacted by the water contamination at Camp LeJeune.

Lawsuits and Compensation

Camp Lejeune’s water contamination issue has had a significant impact on the health of military personnel, civilian staff, and their families. Those who were exposed to the contaminated water may be eligible for compensation if they meet certain criteria set by law.

Eligibility Criteria:

To apply for compensation, individuals must have been diagnosed with one of the following injuries after exposure at Camp LeJeune:

  1. Parkinson’s disease
  2. Kidney cancer
  3. Leukemias (all types, including myelodysplastic syndromes)
  4. Liver cancer
  5. Bladder cancer
  6. Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
  7. Multiple myeloma
  8. Kidney disease (end-stage renal disease)
  9. Systemic sclerosis / scleroderma
  10. Cardiac birth defects
  11. Esophageal Cancer
  12. Male breast cancer
  13. Lung Cancer (if non-smoker)
  14. Miscarriage
  15. Hepatic Steatosis (Fatty Liver Disease)
  16. Female infertility
  17. Neurobehavioral effects
  18. Non-cardiac birth defects (eye defects, oral clefts, neural tube defects, etc.)
  19. Female breast cancer
  20. Cervical cancer
  21. Hodgkin’s disease
  22. Ovarian cancer
  23. Prostate cancer
  24. Rectal cancer
  25. Brain cancer
  26. Liver cirrhosis
  27. Soft Tissue Cancer
  28. Hypersensitivity Skin Disorder
  29. Aplastic anemia

Alternatively, victims may also qualify if they have been diagnosed with any type of serious medical condition or injury not listed above.

Number Affected:

It is estimated that as many as one million military and civilian staff members along with their families might have been exposed to the contaminated drinking water at Camp Lejeune. This staggering number highlights the scale of this issue and emphasizes the need for compensation.

Importance of Legal Representation:

For victims seeking compensation, having legal representation is crucial. Navigating through complex legal processes can be overwhelming, especially when dealing with a large institution like Camp Lejeune. An experienced attorney specializing in these types of cases will have knowledge about relevant laws and regulations, ensuring that victims’ rights are protected throughout the process.

Legal representation provides guidance on eligibility requirements, assists in gathering necessary documentation such as medical records and supporting evidence, helps file claims accurately within specified deadlines, and advocates for fair compensation on behalf of their clients.

If you or your loved ones were exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune and suffered from any qualifying injuries or conditions mentioned above after exposure, you may be eligible for compensation. Contact an attorney who specializes in military toxic exposure cases today to discuss your options.

Frequently Asked Questions

Question 1: What is the water contamination issue at Camp Lejeune?

The water contamination issue at Camp Lejeune refers to the discovery of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the drinking water on the base. These VOCs were found to be harmful to human health and have potentially affected as many as one million military and civilian staff, along with their families.

Question 2: Who is eligible for compensation related to this water contamination?

To be eligible for compensation, individuals must meet certain criteria set by law. They must have been diagnosed with specific injuries or conditions after exposure at Camp Lejeune. The list includes Parkinson’s disease, kidney cancer, leukemias (all types), liver cancer, bladder cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, multiple myeloma, and various other serious medical conditions.

Alternatively, a person can also qualify if they are diagnosed with any type of cancer, some other serious medical condition, or injury not listed above. It should be noted that legal representation may play a crucial role in navigating through these claims successfully.

Question 3: How can I apply for compensation?

If you believe you are eligible based on your diagnosis after exposure at Camp Lejeune, you need to submit an application requesting a free claim review. The process involves providing necessary documentation such as medical records supporting your diagnosis. You will then go through an evaluation process where experts assess whether you meet eligibility requirements. If approved, the next steps would involve filing formal claim forms which require detailed information about your case. It is highly recommended that victims seek assistance from experienced attorneys who specialize in handling cases related specifically to Camp Lejeune water contamination claims. They can provide guidance and representation throughout the process, making it more efficient and effective in obtaining the compensation you deserve.

Question 4: Are there resources available for support?

Yes, there are several resources and support available for affected individuals and families. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides healthcare benefits to eligible veterans who were stationed at Camp Lejeune during the contaminated water period. Additionally, there are various non-profit organizations that offer assistance, such as financial aid, counseling services, and advocacy groups. These organizations are dedicated to helping survivors navigate through the challenges posed by the water contamination issue. They can provide information on available benefits and support programs as well as help connect individuals with others who have experienced similar situations.

It is important to reach out and utilize these resources in order to access the necessary help and support needed during this difficult time.


  1. https://www.lejeune.marines.mil/visitors/history.aspx
  2. https://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/sites/lejeune/CL-overview.html
  3. https://www.lejeune.marines.mil/Offices-Staff/Environmental-Mgmt/Cultural-Resources/History-Live/History-of-Camp-Lejeune/