River Rouge, Michigan
My father was an outdoorsman. The whole family was constantly taking camping trips. My father bought property over in Canada. The very first time I went over there, I was like, "Oh. My. God. You can breathe!" When we came home to River Rouge, you could see the haze over the city--this orange and green haze. I begged to go back.
Me and my girlfriends talk about this all the time. About the pollution and how it's time to get away and go somewhere where you can breathe and you're not living next to all this.
I don't understand why more people aren't concerned about it. People are dying off, slowly but surely, in their 20s, 30s, 40s, and 50s. When my great-grandmother passed away, she was 106 years old. And when my mom's mom passed away, she was 76. My mother was 66. They're dying younger.
My grandbabies have asthma. My daughter has an inhaler with her wherever she goes, for her and her daughter. When I went to visit them yesterday, there's my granddaughter with a mask on her face. I didn't have that growing up. Nobody had asthma in my family.
Watching my kids not being able to breathe is hard. It hurts as a grandparent. (Interviewed August 13, 2012)