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Listeria Victim's Son: "Food Safety Should be Paramount in this Country"

Paul A. Schwarz, Jr., of Kansas City, Mo., was a World War II veteran who earned two Purple Hearts. In 2011, a food he regularly enjoyed for breakfast -- cantaloupe -- happened to be contaminated with the dangerous bacteria Listeria, and it eventually killed him. Unfortunately, his story is not unique. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that each year 48 million Americans are sickened and 3,000 die from foodborne illnesses. Full implementation of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act, the largest overhaul of the nation's food safety system since the Great Depression, will help to reduce the number of Americans who suffer from foodborne infections.

Schwarz's son, Paul F. Schwarz, 63, is now a tireless advocate for food safety. Here's his story about his dad and the foodborne illness that took his life.

For more information, visit http://www.pewhealth.org/projects/food-safety-85899367097.