CHARLESTON - Sixty-five companies were named as defendants in an asbestos suit filed Feb. 6 in Kanawha Circuit Court. Six of the companies are doing business in Kanawha County.
Ripley residents James E. and Ella Jean Rhodes filed the suit because James Rhodes was diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma on Dec. 14, 2006. The disease, an incurable cancer on the outer lining of the lungs, was caused by significant exposure to asbestos, the suit says.
Rhodes worked as a laborer, mostly as a boilermaker.
The West Virginia companies named as defendants are Nitro Industrial Coverings Inc., Famous Furnace & Supply Co. aka Famous Supply Company of Wheeling, UB West Virginia Inc. fka Union Boiler Company, C. David Williams LTD dba Dave's Auto Supply of Ripley, Hardman Supply Company and Vimasco Corporation.
The products produced, transported or used by the companies caused certain asbestos-containing materials to come into contact with Rhodes.
As a result of the negligence of the defendants, Rhodes suffers a severe illness, which has forced him to obtain medical treatment. The complaint says his enjoyment of life has greatly diminished.
He seeks punitive damages of all defendants for their reckless, wanton, malicious and willful conduct. He also seeks compensatory damages.
R. Scott Marshall is representing the plaintiffs, the case has been assigned to a visiting judge.
Kanawha Circuit Court case number 07-C-255