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Amy's List


Back in 2009, Amy Griffin (the University of Washington’s assistant women’s soccer coach and former World Cup champion) started to notice an unusual pattern of soccer goalies being diagnosed with cancer. As the trend of cancer in turf athletes has continued to grow, the numbers have become too big to ignore. For years, Amy has suspected that crumb rubber, the tiny pellets that cushion turf fields and are sourced from used tires, may be contributing to the surge in cancer. 

Amy has done an incredible job compiling a list of diagnosed players that includes not only goalkeepers but soccer players, football players, lacrosse, field hockey and baseball players. Her efforts have paved the way for meaningful national conversation regarding the potential risk of crumb rubber turf fields. ESPN and NBC News have each published investigative reports about the potential danger:

ESPN - E60 The Turf War with Julie Foudy

How Safe Is the Artificial Turf Your Child Plays On?

More recently, Amy’s connection intensified when a 13-year-old soccer goalie who had attended preschool with Amy’s children was diagnosed with Stage 4 Nodular Lymphocycte-Predominant Hodgkin Lymphoma, a rare blood cancer. After enduring months of brutal chemotherapy and complications, Jack Bryant emerged cancer-free and his mom, Jean, also became an advocate against crumb rubber synthetic turf.  Anxious to resume a normal life, Jack got back on the field as a goalkeeper for a few months.  Nobody expected that it would be his last time.  His 6-month follow-up uncovered that cancer had returned and the battle begins again.  Although his time on turf is over, helping future athletes prevent cancer is not.

Together, Amy and Jean hope to expand their efforts by proactively reaching out to communities and providing a platform for every turf athlete diagnosed with cancer to be included. The goal is to collect information about each turf athlete diagnosed to help shape health and safety regulations for crumb rubber and guide research into the safety of fields.  By providing aggregate data (not names) to agencies such as the Department of Health, EPA, CDC, Consumer Product Safety Commission, we hope further research and legislation can be drafted.  

Please be assured that names and contact information will NOT be shared!  Toxicologists, epidemiologists and environmental health experts are interested in diagnosis patterns and demographic areas of concern.  They rely on data sorted by age, gender, city, etc., the type we are collecting in this 5-minute survey.   Again, NO NAMES WILL BE SHARED.

We understand that everyone's journey with cancer is unique and very personal. We are asking for no more than data, and respect any degree of involvement including completion of this short survey.  Please email us with any questions or concerns, and understand that we are not a group or organization just volunteers so it may take a little time (and gentle reminders) for us to respond.