Seth Ellingsworth figured he was set for life. He was 22 and had just landed a coveted factory job in the company town he’d grown up in.
“I thought it was the greatest thing ever,” he said. “The place where people in the area worked that did well, I got a job there. I was really proud that I was a part of it.”
Now, at 35, Ellingsworth spends most days beset by tremors, struggling for oxygen, frequently confined to the ground floor of his home in Richland, Washington. It’s just outside his former place of work: the Hanford Nuclear Site.