Mary Hardeman told a federal jury in San Francisco her husband Edwin Hardeman was a changed man after he developed non-Hodgkin lymphoma and had to undergo six rounds of chemotherapy. She remembers him screaming because the pain in his bones was unbearable, and that his once-strong demeanor had crumbled in the face of such a horrible disease.
Mr. Hardeman’s cancer is in remission, but “there’s always that fear that it’s going to come back, it’s the unknown,” he told the jury.
The Hardemans testified during the second phase of the trial over the couple’s claims that Mr. Hardeman’s use of Monsanto’s herbicide Roundup on his 56-acre property in Sonoma County from the 1980s until 2012 caused him to develop non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The culprit, according to his lawsuit, is the active ingredient glyphosate, which is listed as a probable carcinogen by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer.
Mr. Hardeman took the stand in the first phase of the trial but was only allowed to testify about the extent of his use of Roundup. Last week, the jury found that Mr. Hardeman’s cancer was caused by the weed killer. The second phase of the trial delves into Monsanto’s liability in causing Hardeman’s disease.
Bayer AG, which acquired Monsanto late last year, is vigorously defending the safety of Roundup and the chemical ingredient glyphosate.
More than 8,000 lawsuits have been filed by landscapers, groundskeepers, farmers, and home gardeners against Monsanto alleging glyphosate exposure caused non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The Hardemans’ case is the second to be tried. The first involved the case of a school groundskeeper who said he was regularly exposed to and accidentally doused in Roundup while working with the herbicide. A California jury ordered Monsanto to pay him $289 million in damages. The award was later reduced to $78 million.