Bone Cancer Cluster in West Salem


A family photograph of Lisa Harder and her favorite horse, Rio.

A rare form of bone cancer, osteosarcoma, has struck a small town in Oregon. A form of cancer that is typically diagnosed only about 800 times a year across the U.S. has devastated 7 families in West Salem, Oregon in just the past three years. That’s seven occurrences in three years in a town with a population of 19,000 residents. It would be expected in a town of this size to have just one diagnosis in a generation. The families of the affected children want to know why this has happened to their town.

Several of the affected families and students at West Salem High School put together two online petitions to encourage the EPA to investigate the cause of the sudden outbreak. As a result of the online petitions, the EPA has agreed to visit the town and will conduct an investigation into the potential causes.

Read more about the West Salem, Oregon outbreak at: