Macy Borders the bank worker who survived the World Trade Center attack has died at 42 after a year-long battle with cancer.
She was a 28-year-old Bank of America worker when the iconic photograph of her fleeing the World Trade Centre was taken. Borders, who came to be known around the world as the “dust lady”died after a year-long battle with stomach cancer that she blamed on dust inhaled during the attack.
The Independent report: The mother-of-two, who is believed to have died on Monday night according to her family’s social media posts, blamed her illness on inhaling dust particles: “I’m saying to myself ‘Did this thing ignite cancer cells in me?
“I definitely believe it because I haven’t had any illnesses. I don’t have high blood pressure…high cholesterol, diabetes,” she told US newspaper the New Jersey journal in November.
Several studies conducted since 9/11 show that first responders and people who were working and living downtown at the time of the attacks have since experienced new or exacerbated respiratory ailments.
The Guardian reports that Mount Sinai Selikoff Centers for Occupational Health said last year that there were at least 1,646 certified cancer cases found in 9/11 first responders and rescuers.
Yet, no study has conclusively proved a connection between 9/11 and cancer in people who were at Ground Zero during and immediately following the attacks. Researchers have called for continued monitoring of survivors and long-term analysis of medical conditions experienced by people who were at Ground Zero – in part because cancer can take much longer to develop than respiratory illness.
The air at Ground Zero contained pulverized concrete, shards of glass and carcinogens, according to a 2011 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report.
Under the Zadroga Act, which provides money for treatment of 9/11-related illness, the World Trade Center health program must conduct a regular review of ground zero-related health conditions. The program initially excluded cancer, but was amended in 2012 after a push by politicians who said there was sufficient evidence to prove a connection between the attack and cancer.