Celebrities Afflected by Rare Cancer

Posted on Apr 30 2012 - 6:22pm by GJ Staff

Mesothelioma is a rare but well documented cancer that occurs on the lining that protects internal body organs. The transformation of these cells into cancerous cells is generally caused by exposure to asbestos.

The media coverage and public knowledge has caused by several well known figures talking of their experiences as well as high profile legal proceedings regarding the disease. The most famous asbestos related law suit was by Bernie Banton, a workers’ rights agitator in Australia. He sued James Hardie, a power company that he worked for. He claimed that the firm exposed its employees to asbestos without adequate protection. He was eventually compensated hours before his death.

American actor, Paul Gleason died of the disease on 2006. The “Breakfast Club”, “Die Hard” and “Trading Places” actor believed that he contracted the cancer after being exposed to asbestos in building sites. Other notable celebs who died of mesothelioma include Professional Football Hall of Famer, Merlin Olsen, Malcolm McLaren who managed the “Sex Pistols” and actor Steve McQueen who was denied surgery due to the advanced stage of his cancer.