Who was Officer James Zadroga and Why Should You Know His Name?
Officer James Zadroga was one of the first responders on the scene when New York’s Twin Towers were attacked by terrorists on September 11, 2001. Zadroga was a police officer for New York City who eventually spent more than 450 hours involved in clean-up and rescue efforts at the site now known as Ground Zero. As a result of his exposure to the dust, toxic chemicals and rubble of Ground Zero, Zadroga developed severe respiratory disease. Within weeks of the attacks, Zadroga began to cough persistently and could not walk more than 100 yards without gasping for air. Sadly, James Zadroga succumbed to his illness and passed away in January 2006 at the age of 34.
An official autopsy was performed on Zadroga’s body in April 2006. At that time, the medical examiner concluded that foreign matter found in Zadroga’s lungs was more than likely related to his efforts as a police officer at Ground Zero. These findings were disputed in October 2007 by the New York City Medical Examiner who claimed that the scarring in Zadroga’s lungs was self-induced from illegal drug use. This theory was immediately challenged by his family and disproven.
Prior to his death, James Zadroga was a client of the law firm Barasch, McGarry, Salzman and Penson. We are pleased to say that a victim compensation fund bearing the name James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act was formed in his honor. This fund provides financial benefits for people who worked at the Ground Zero recovery site and later became ill. Funds are also available for those who lived or attended school in Lower Manhattan and subsequently developed asthma, cancer, lung disease, or a related illness as a result of exposure to toxic dust and fumes. If you were affected in this way by the 9/11 tragedy, contact our law office to learn how we can help you claim the largest payout possible.
For more about post-9/11 claims, please see our new website, focused on WTC victims and Zadroga Act claims.