A Manhattan jury returned a verdict against Ford Motor Co. and awarded $11 million to the family of an auto mechanic, finding that Ford acted with reckless disregard for his safety, and that Ford was partially to blame for his death.
Arthur H. Juni, Jr. was a retired automobile mechanic. He died of mesothelioma in March after a painful battle with the cancer, diagnosed in 2012.
New York resident, Juni, began his lawsuit against Ford soon after he was diagnosed with mesothelioma.
He blamed Ford for causing his fatal disease by failing to warn that certain Ford automotive parts contained asbestos and that breathing asbestos posed a significant health risk.
Asbestos is used in brakes, clutches and engine gaskets, and causes mesothelioma in people who inhale the toxic mineral, Juni asserted in his lawsuit.
74-year-old Juni died on March 15, 2014, just before the lawsuit reached the trial phase in New York Supreme Court. The verdict was returned on May 30, 2014.
Eight million of the $11 million award was to compensate Juni for his pain and suffering. The remainder of the total goes to his wife, Mary Jo, for her loss of services and consortium resulting from his cancer.
Juni began his career as an auto mechanic in 1965. He worked for decades on Ford asbestos brakes and clutches, and frequently removed and replaced Ford asbestos engine gaskets.
In 2012, Juni noticed deterioration in his health. He sought medical attention when his chronic cough and pain in his chest did not dissipate.
On June 25, 2012, Juni was diagnosed with having malignant pleural mesothelioma, an unusually aggressive form of cancer that begins on the layer of tissue surrounding the lungs.
His quality of life declined rapidly as the disease worsened and spread. Juni endured agonizing and debilitating pain for most of the next two years, according to his testimony, his wife’s testimony and the medical records introduced into evidence.
Due to the terminal nature of mesothelioma, Juni’s testimony was recorded on videotape three days earlier, to bring to his upcoming trial. The testimony was taken under oath at his home in Nanuet, New York.
The video of Juni’s testimony was played back at the trial, on large television monitors for viewing by the jury.
It is unfortunate that Mr. Juni died before learning that he was awarded $11 million by a jury. At least justice was served and his family was compensated for their loss.
If you or a loved one was diagnosed with a chronic illness as a result of poor working conditions, you may be entitled to compensation. For more information, contact one of our Gacovino Lake attorneys at 1-800-246-HURT (4878).