Satellite Beach, FL, USA

Satellite Beach: Your Real Estate Values Won't Follow You to Heaven

SATELLITE BEACH, FLA - Imagine discovering a destination with pristine waters tailor-made for exhilarating surfing experiences, clean sandy beaches, and endless sunshine all year round. As you browse through the realtor listings, you encounter numerous enchanting portrayals of a charming coastal town nestled harmoniously beside the crashing waves of the ocean. This exciting spot allows you to witness breathtaking sunsets, saying goodbye to gloomy skies and freezing snow as you embark on a fresh start, leaving behind a tumultuous life you yearn to break free from.

Jeff Dubitsky relocated his family to the vibrant City of Satellite Beach eight years ago, a charming neighborhood adjacent to Patrick Space Force base. He was drawn to the concept of living in a transient community and saw it as an exciting opportunity. Dubitsky envisioned a close-knit neighborhood where bonfires illuminated the night sky and the sound of crashing waves provided a soothing backdrop. He eagerly anticipated the chance to forge meaningful connections with his neighbors, sharing stories and laughter around the crackling flames. In his mind, the possibilities were endless, and he couldn't wait to embark on this new chapter of his life.

Despite facing the loss of a close friend and business partner, Dubitsky found solace in opening his heart and home to her son through adoption. But his love for children didn't stop there - he decided to expand his family by adopting four more boys! His devotion to fatherhood is evident in his determination to give each of his adopted children a caring home and a promising future.

The misfortunes persisted as Dubitsky experienced the devastating loss of his mother, who had played a significant role in their lives. Seeking a fresh start, he longed for a peaceful, picturesque place by the water. With frequent visits to the Sunshine State, he felt a deep bond with Satellite Beach.

Driven by a dream, the family set out to settle into a new home in a location known as the ultimate getaway destination for people worldwide. Dubitsky began to see the truth behind the rose-colored glasses as time passed. The idyllic town he had chosen was part of a toxic triangle, shattering his vision of a perfect sanctuary.

Satellite Beach Discovers Alarming Number of Cancer Cases

Dubitsky first learned about an alarming number of cancer cases among young adults in his town when he caught a news segment featuring an oncologist giving a speech at a community meeting in Indian Harbour Beach. This led him to join a Facebook group called Satellite Beach Health and Hope for Tomorrow to follow the issue. He started digging into the topic of contamination from the nearby military base that might have affected the health of his neighbors.

Shortly after, on a breezy, sunny day, Jeff and his father were in the front yard taking care of plants when they encountered a young woman with fiery red hair. After years of investigating the increasing number of illnesses in young adults in Brevard County, she went door-to-door until she reached Jeff's house. She urged him to test his water, leading him to get involved.

Attending his first City Council meeting, Dubitsky was in search of leadership. When the time for public comments arrived, he approached the podium, speaking into the microphone, urging the local council to take charge and provide solutions.

Unknown to him, he would face continuous and relentless harassment for his efforts to raise awareness about the pollution and health issues caused by the Department of Defense. He played a significant role in setting up a non-profit organization named Fight for Zero to offer resources such as scientific testing and studies. He also invited Erin Brockovich to visit his community.

The Highly Publicized Closed Door Meeting

Before Brockovich visited Brevard County, Dubitsky met with her water expert, Bob Bowcock. They spent time investigating the area, engaging with community members, and discussing research they had done on the pollution from the military base. Bowcock also emailed Satellite Beach council members, copying Dubitsky, to schedule a meeting for the same week he was in town. This September 2018 meeting became a highly publicized incident that the city would never let down.

The city invited Air Force base affiliates and state and county representatives and advertised the meeting on its official website as a public workshop, inviting the public to sit in and attend, but the situation took an unexpected turn. Upon Dubitsky and his team's arrival, they were abruptly halted by armed law enforcement, denied entry, and pushed outside of city hall. This shocking turn of events propelled Dubitsky to take legal action to protect his rights and those of other residents who faced similar treatment. Only one person from the public, who happened to be in close communication with City Manager Courtney Barker, was allowed to attend the meeting that day.

"When anything happened, the local police wouldn't listen or respond. Evidently, the police prioritized serving as the government's personal bodyguards," said Dubitsky

Families attempted to file ethics complaints, but they were disregarded. The Florida state attorney displayed no interest in acknowledging or receiving any reports, and the police department in Satellite Beach declined to document or file any police reports regarding violating citizens' rights.

Dubitsky and his team have been fighting a legal battle against the city for years. Despite having video and photo evidence and over a dozen witnesses, including media reporters, their case was dismissed and never heard. The city continues to use taxpayers' money to prolong the case and try to recover their legal fees despite their attorney's advice against it, as they appeal for the third time.

“It doesn't take long to realize that the court system is heavily tilted against ordinary citizens. The judges are elected and supported by the same officials people are trying to hold accountable,” said Dubitsky.

The Never-Ending Harassment and Corruption

Shortly after the closed-door meeting, Dubitsky's home received an 11-page threat packet in the mail containing items such as bloody hands, deranged ramblings, demands for his nonprofit's crowdsourced health data, and threats to never leave his family alone unless he ceased investigating the cancer cluster and contamination. This packet's sender was the only resident allowed into the closed-door meeting. Coincidentally, the oncologist that Dubitsky's team was assisting received a similar packet at her workplace. Then he discovered through public records that taxpayers funded the packet printing at City Hall in Satellite Beach.

The family's troubles persisted, with unending harassment coming from different directions. Dubitsky noticed police cars outside their home and later learned through public records that the City Manager was exploiting the police department to spy on a resident in South Patrick Shores.

They also encountered opposition from friends of council members in public places, leaving them feeling vulnerable and targeted. Dubitsky faced intimidation during his errands and was subjected to confrontations and threats in parking lots. This eventually led to court cases and restraining orders as Dubitsky sought legal protection from the harassers.

The attempts to damage Dubitsky and his colleagues' reputations continued online. They created numerous fake accounts and invested considerable time sharing highly sensitive information, distorted facts, and exaggerated rumors. They even enlisted the help of their friends, who worked hard to make the community doubt the validity of the contamination and disease rates.

“It seemed that they (local government) worked harder to be confrontational and gather information and facts that my organization had so they could put a spin on it before we publicized it,” mentions Dubitsky.

There were also small acts of sabotage. Dubitsky's trash conveniently went unnoticed on pickup days, permits for home improvements were mysteriously delayed, and their internet services were constantly interrupted. The family's home became a focal point for drive-by incidents, where individuals would shout obscenities and exhibit violent behavior toward the family.

Dubitsky grew more concerned when he noticed he was being followed in town and to his children's schools. To ensure their safety, he went to great lengths by preventing a teacher, Jodi Rozycki, who sat on the Satellite Beach council, from getting near them or being their teacher. Child protective services were called maliciously, but the agency found no issues and left promptly. Dubitsky later found that Rozycki shared his children's whereabouts, which was not public knowledge then, with the city council, who openly discussed it at an October 25, 2023, meeting.

Besides facing opposition from government officials, Dubitsky, and his team also had to deal with community members who initially seemed eager to help but later revealed hidden agendas of seeking fame, political power, or influence. These ulterior motives caused a whole new set of issues for his organization. Subsequently, officials noticed this dynamic and exploited it to sow chaos that aligned with their own agenda. The Dubitsky family, living one street over from city hall, found themselves ostracized by their elected leaders, who seemed to encourage their friends to partake in the mistreatment of the family.

In their desperate quest for relief, the family had no choice but to hire attorneys to send cease and desist letters, and countless hours were spent consulting with legal professionals. The persistent harassment eventually pushed Dubitsky to invest in a body camera, dash camera, and home camera system in an attempt to gather evidence and protect his family from further harm.

Before Erin Brockovich arrived, Dubitsky felt as though he was being gaslit. He recalls how the local government mocked the situation, joking about how they would handle the widespread PFAS contamination, all while young adults fought for their health. Officials blamed everyday items like sunscreen and cookware and downplayed the samples taken from children's schools that showed PFBA. One technician even laughed as he drank the contaminated water in front of the press.

“When Erin Brockovich arrived in town, it was a clear sign that we were heading in the right direction. She made it abundantly clear that we couldn't rely on a superhero to come and save us. The responsibility fell on our community to take action,” said Dubitsky.

Uncovering the Truth: Examining the Local Government's Silence

Dubitsky and his team were awarded a one-million-dollar grant to conduct a PFAS study in Brevard County, Florida, which would span over three years. The study required collecting environmental samples from water to soil across the county. However, during the project, Dubitsky's family began to experience health problems. As the study's results became available, his fear was only confirmed. Despite installing a complete filtration system and taking necessary precautions, he decided to move because he no longer felt safe.

After relocating his family across states, they wasted no time getting health checkups, only to discover alarming issues. One family member had tumors, while another was diagnosed with lymphoma cancer. Shockingly, Dubitsky's Satellite Beach neighbor from across the street was also battling lymphoma cancer. Despite his involvement with environmental work, the unfolding health crises within his family left him questioning the potential contamination lurking beneath Satellite Beach homes. Could chemicals be seeping in through vapor intrusion, hot tub mist, or other means? Dubitsky says,

"Greed doesn't discriminate; it doesn't care about the struggles your family endures. They will even let their own family go through cancer if it means they can live off that greed."

When Satellite Beach councilwoman Mindy Gibson learned that the Dubitsky family had moved, she shamelessly laughed, fabricated a false explanation for their relocation, and callously uttered the words, "Good riddance” at a 2023 council meeting. She describes the family's advocacy as a matter of "optics."

On social media, hundreds of people share their gut-wrenching accounts of their diagnosis, and it's rare to find someone who hasn't been impacted by cancer in Satellite Beach. It is highly unlikely that anyone would willingly sacrifice their health or loved ones for the sake of monetary gain. When you're running out of time, the value of your property won't matter.

“I've been witnessing community members like Brian Piper, Whitney Prieto, Kaela Holmes, Tim Wakefield, and his wife, and many others pass away from cancer. It doesn't matter if you knew them personally or just heard of them; they are part of our community. I can't help but think about the children now left without parents. Why? Just to increase property values? Is it easier to ignore the issue by making fun of the contamination? Is it worth it for parents to lose their children? Something is wrong with these people if they believe this is normal. This is far from normal,” says Dubitsky

Additional Reading and Sources:
  1. 11-page threat packet:
  2. 2018 July 3 City Council Meeting:
  3. 2023 October 25 Council Meeting:
  4. Brevard County Cancer Assessment (left out cancers that should have been included):
  5. City of Satellite Beach Closed Door Meeting:
  6. Department of Defense 2018 PFAS Report:
  7. Doctor who got cancer demands investigation into Air Force Base:
  8. Three-Year PFAS Study in Brevard:
  9. Toxic Triangle:
  10. Satellite Beach Health & Hope for Tomorrow: