Erasmo Cruz-Vega is puzzled. “Three weeks ago, the neighbor from up there died of lung cancer and another one who lived nearby died of the same cause last year,” he said whispering. “He wasn’t 60 years old.”
While looking at his hands and counted each one with his fingers, he added that on Street D, another friend younger than 50 years old “already has the same diagnosis and Héctor had X-Rays done that showed a bunch of spots throughout his body. His has already spread.”
Erasmo is 71 and has lived in Guayama’s Santa Ana sector for 65 years. His parents arrived in the area when the zone was still covered in sugarcane.