Victims say a simple test could have spared untold thousands exposure to a witch's brew of cancer-causing chemicals beneath Camp Lejeune. But no one responsible for the Marine base's lab can recall ever performing the procedure.
The Navy mandated the so-called carbon chloroform extract testing in 1963.
The Marine Corps maintains that the test would not have uncovered the carcinogens that fouled the southeastern North Carolina base's water system from at least the mid-1950s until wells were capped in the mid-1980s. But experts tell The Associated Press that even this relatively primitive method should have raised red flags.
Nearly three decades after the first well closures, victims are still awaiting a federal health assessment.