Secret Human Testing: Victims in St. Louis Demand Answers 2013


Published on 12 May 2013

A recent I-Team investigation showing how the Army experimented on unsuspecting St. Louisans in the 1950s and ’60s has been getting worldwide attention. 

Missouri‘s two U.S. Senators, Democrat Claire McCaskill, and Republican Roy Blunt, are demanding more information about the secret human testing. But so far, the Army remains silent. 

The problem for the government is that survivors remember and for the first time are sharing their stories in hopes someone will listen and perhaps be held accountable. 

In the early days of the Cold War, the Army arrived in St. Louis and began spraying zinc cadmium sulfide on children and families, who lived in and around the Pruitt Igoe housing projects located north of downtown St. Louis

“They said we were living in the project, but we were the project,” said former Pruitt Igoe resident Doris Spates. 

At the time, no one questioned why the army placed chemical sprayers on the backs of cars and the tops of buildings. Many, like Leareon Burnett Hamer, thought they were killing mosquitoes. 

“Why would you do that when you know you was not spraying for bugs, you were spraying for people,” she said. 

A group of people who were exposed to the zinc cadmium sulfide came to our studios to tell their stories. Most of them are now in their ’60s. 

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