SE Texas Record

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"Heavy" smoker's family blames asbestos for benefactor's lung cancer, sues 43 corporations

By David Yates | May 2, 2007

Bryan Blevins

Attorney Bryan Blevins of Provost Umphrey will represent the family of a "heavy" smoker and sue the A.O. Smith Corp., along with 42 other major corporations, for distributing products containing asbestos throughout Jefferson County.

This is the fourth case of its kind filed by Blevins in the last 30 days.

Elaine and Elizabeth Gros, the executrix of the Andrew Gros estate, are blaming an assortment of corporations, such as aerospace giant Lockheed Martin and iron supplier Zurn Industries, for manufacturing and distributing asbestos laced products.

They filed their lawsuit with the Jefferson County District Court on May 1. Judge Bob Wortham, 58th Judicial District, will preside over the case.

Medical records attached to his lawsuit state Andrew Gros had significant occupational exposure to asbestos, probably while working as carpenter and a petrochemical superintendent beginning in 1949.

The document also says Andrew Gros was a "heavy" cigarette smoker.

The petition says the 43 defendants entangled in his lawsuit were negligent, failing to adequately test their asbestos-laced products before flooding the market with dangerous goods.

In addition, the petition faults Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Corp. (3M Corporation) and American Optical Corp. for producing defective masks that failed to "provide respiratory protection."

Elaine and Elizabeth are suing for physical pain and suffering in the past and future, mental anguish in the past and future, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, disfigurement in the past and future, physical impairment in the past and future, and past and future medical expenses.

Case No. A179-219

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