Mother alleges polluted Crestwood well water caused her infant's death, her Parkinson's disease

By Dan Harkins | Jul 28, 2015

A Crestwood woman is suing the village, an environmental engineering firm and two former mayors, alleging the water she and many in town had been using caused her son to die of neurological problems and caused her to be diagnosed with Parkinson's disease.

Linda Jensen filed a lawsuit July 21 in Cook County Circuit Court against the village of Crestwood, Burke Engineering Corp., Chester Stranczek, who served as mayor of Crestwood from 1975 to 2007, and Robert Stranczek, who served as Crestwood mayor from 2007 to 2009, alleging negligence.

According to the complaint, contamination, including cancer-causing chemicals, was present in the Crestwood drinking water from 1975 to 2009, and this was "fraudulently concealed" by the defendants. As early as 1985, the suit says, the defendants were made aware of the contamination from test results from state Environmental Protection Agency regulators showing well water contaminated with volatile organic chemicals like perchiorothelylene, dichloroethylene and vinyl chloride.

Jensen, who drank, bathed, inhaled steam from and cooked unwittingly with contaminated well water since 1975, gave birth Aug. 23, 1988, to a son with a congenital birth defect known as Tetralogy of Fallot, the lawsuit states. On Aug. 23, 1988, her son died from complications from heart surgery necessary to treat Tetralogy of Fallot.

In April 2013, the plaintiff was diagnosed with "significant neurological deficits," a condition ultimately diagnosed as Parkinson's disease, the lawsuit states.

Jensen seeks damages of more than $300,000, plus court costs and attorney fees. She is represented by attorney Eileen M. O'Connor of O'Connor Law Group in Chicago.

Cook County Circuit Court case number 2015L007412.

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