Family members stricken by cancer, living near cancer cluster in Fifth Ward speak to FOX 26

Within Houston's Fifth Ward, not far from the Union Pacific Line, you will find a house on Kress St. where Carmen McKelvey lived much of her life - a life filled with good times and plenty of hard ones too.

"I just knew we were all getting sick, but I'm thinking, it was a family thing," said McKelvey.

RELATED: Fifth Ward residents react to Houston, Harris Co. intent to sue Union Pacific over rail yard

She's talking cancer, throat cancer, to be exact. First to die was Carmen's grandmother, then her grandfather, followed, in time, by her mother and two beloved aunts.

Carmen McKelvey of Fifth Ward speaks with FOX 26 (Photo: FOX 26 Houston)

In January, amid growing outcries over decades of uncontained Creosote contamination, Carmen was diagnosed with the same deadly disease.

MORE: Residents rallying in Fifth Ward asking what's being done about the cancer causing contamination

A nurse and caregiver for 50 years, Carmen is still puzzled by how long it has taken to connect the "toxic" dots.

"I have a feeling they knew about it a long time before it even got to us," said McKelvey. "Before we knew about it, they knew, and they may have been trying to do their thing secretly. Nothing we could do about it, so we will just handle it this way and not talk about it."

Just three months ago, Carmen was still skillfully tending to hospice patients, but now it's her turn for end-of-life care.

She has a simple message for the community leaders and legion of friends she will eventually leave, sooner than she would like.

"Make sure that people are doing the best that they can do to make it right because we got children coming up. They have nowhere to go," said McKelvey.

RELATED: Fifth Ward residents react to Houston, Harris Co. intent to sue Union Pacific over rail yard

Meantime, the distress of Carmen's journey through "stage four" is more than tempered by her faith. No regrets and no resentment she says against the polluters who, quite possibly, cut short her life.

"I'm not afraid. I am not scared," said McKelvey. "I am not really angry, because only the Lord knows. Everything happens for a reason."

ACTION BEING TAKEN: Harris Co. Attorney, city of Houston taking action against Union Pacific regarding contamination in Fifth Ward

Union Pacific continues to dispute allegations of health-altering contamination originating at the company's Fifth Ward property.