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  • Rachel Cole

Moldy in the Midwest

My name is Janna Driver and my husband was active duty Air Force stationed at Tinker AFB in Oklahoma where we lived on base in privatized housing. We had numerous ongoing issues in our home including maintenance issues that were neglected over the two years we lived there which ultimately resulted in making my family very sick.


On August 19, 2018 after lengthy and constant illnesses, my husband and I began to uncover the real cause of all of our symptoms. I spent the weekend deep cleaning my house because we had all been so sick, for so long and thought we were passing around a never ending virus. The utility room in our home was also my children’s play room. When I got to my utility room, I moved their small card table away from the wall and the wall was solid black. I never thought it was mold. I thought it was residue from the padded side of their table. I wiped it off with my rag and wiped all of the baseboards down, mopped and went on. The symptoms we had, included:  constant sore throats, nose bleeds, brain fog, blurred vision, numbness of extremities, fatigue, severe debilitating headaches, even the 4 year olds complained daily of these headaches along with dizziness. Knowing headaches are not normal for a child of that age, it even caused me to worry that my they might have cancer. One of my twins suffered numerous times from respiratory distress that required emergency room attention.


The housing company moved our family into another home on base used to temporarily house families while work is being done to their home. We were told it had no mold and was safe. We saw mold on the wall in the mech room there. This home was filthy, dirt on the floors, stains on the couch and carpets and bugs in the drawers in the kitchen. We had to hire our own mold company to come test the mold and The test results showed that all 5 of the toxic molds were present inside our home.




We had to pay out of pocket to see a Dr in Midwest City who specializes in toxic mold exposure. We tested positive for the presence of mycotoxins in our bodies. After several issues we felt were the results of mold there, we requested to be moved to a hotel. Seven of us – two adults and five children in a hotel room for days.



Initially, they would only commit to one night at a time. Leaving us each night to wonder where we would go the next day and the next night after that, with 5 children. We had to borrow a credit card from my parents so that we at least had the security of a roof over our heads for more than one night at a time. Eventually, the company agreed to go back and pay for those and finally upon hiring an attorney, we were extended in the hotel for over two months. All total, we were out of our home for approximately 3 months with 5 children.




I found out just two days ago, this housing company has moved another family into this contaminated home. Over the next week, we began to move out. We were only able to save metal and glass items from our home. I was forced to part with antiques given to me by my grandparents, as well as keepsake items from my children because they had all been contaminated with mold spores due to improper remediation. We turned in a 7 day written notice to terminate our lease based on uninhabitability on November 15th but the housing company continued to withhold our BAH until Reuter’s contacted them to ask why they were not releasing our housing money and it was released on the December 15th paycheck. They sent us a letter through our attorney charging us $1100.00 in fees (we never received an itemized statement of those charges) and that they would trade us a month of BAH for our inconveniences and we could call it even. We did not accept this offer and have filed a law suit against them.


We will likely suffer from the effects of this for the rest of our lives. Physically, financially, emotionally and mentally. My family went from zero to massive amounts of debt in a 3 month period. I suffer daily from chronic breathing issues and blurred vision. We take an enormous amount of binders, supplements, and prescriptions daily, with no end in sight. It didn’t have to be this way. I feel it is important for the citizens of the United States to realize that these are the housing conditions the people who are sacrificing their lives for this country are being given to live in.


We will likely suffer from the effects of this for the rest of our lives. Physically, financially, emotionally and mentally. My family went from zero to massive amounts of debt in a 3 month period. I suffer daily from chronic breathing issues and blurred vision. We take an enormous amount of binders, supplements, and prescriptions daily, with no end in sight. It didn’t have to be this way. I feel it is important for the citizens of the United States to realize that these are the housing conditions the people who are sacrificing their lives for this country are being given to live in.


#militarymatters #yourMMstory #militarymold

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