CHARLESTON - A Kentucky man has filed an asbestos suit against 56 companies, claiming he now has lung cancer because of the negligence of the companies.

Paul Howard, and his wife Rhrea, filed a suit May 4 in Kanawha Circuit Court. Howard, who lives in Ashland, claims he was exposed to asbestos dust while he was a laborer with Armco Steel, also known as A.K. Steel, which caused his cancer.

Howard worked as a laborer and locomotive repairman from 1958 to 1993. During that time, he was exposed to asbestos dust on the jobsite. He now has lung and laryngeal cancer.

In a nine-count suit, Howard claims his wife also suffered, and lost financial support of her husband for the remainder of her life.

Paul and Rhrea Howard, through attorney Samuel Elswick, seek compensatory and punitive damages.

The case will be assigned to a visiting judge.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 07-C-850

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