Pascagoula residents getting angry and sick over pollution, miscommunication

Pascagoula residents getting angry and sick over pollution, miscommunication

PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - The recent security threat at the Chevron refinery in Pascagoula is just the latest of a long list of issues residents have against the larges industries just miles and, in some cases, yards from their homes.

The Cherokee neighborhood in east Pascagoula looks quiet. But it's not long before you can hear the noise. Pollution of all forms is what is getting these residents angry. But, as much as anything else, they want better communication.

Barbara Weckesser is the founder of Cherokee Concerned Citizens, which has been around since 2014.

"We can't handle it," she said. "We cannot take any more of an accumulative effect in this neighborhood. The security within Chevron was just the last thing. We have begged and begged and begged for the last year: Notify us. Let us know when something is happening over there so we can make a decision as to what we need to do."

She says that within the last three years, health issues have become worse. Including her's. She wants to move, but can't.

"Let the industries have it. If that's what they want. If they want industry here more than residents. We have residents right here now that are very, very sick. And if they don't get out of here, they're not going to make it."

Myrie Jeter has lived in the neighborhood for 48 years. In August 2011, she knew something was wrong.

"We had an issue with the smells that were so strong that we had to go inside," she said. "And we knew it was harmful to our health because of the way our bodies reacted."

Fred Nelson, Sr. has been a resident for 28 years. His wife has just recovered from throat cancer and now has respiratory infections that require hospitalization. He wants to move as well.

"I'd leave in a minute," he said.

But Zee Tran wants to stay even through her husband is ill.

"The doctor give me the command, you have to move out of that subdivision," she said. "But I love my neighborhood."

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