CHARLESTON - Mary Kathryn Black, widow of steelworker Steve Black, claims in a Kanawha County suit that he died because 35 companies exposed him to asbestos.

Cindy Kiblinger of James F. Humphreys & Associates in Charleston filed the suit June 6, in association with the firm of Motley Rice in Mount Pleasant, S.C.

The complaint stated that Black worked for Armco Steel, an Ohio corporation, but it did not state where he resided or worked.

Defendants exposed Black to asbestos dust as a result of manufacture, sale, distribution, installation and removal of products that contained asbestos, Kiblinger wrote.

The roster of defendants included six West Virginia corporations -- McJunkin Corporation, Ohio Valley Insulating, State Electric Supply, Union Boiler Company, Vimasco Corporation and West Virginia Electric Supply.

The complaint alleged at one point that Black developed lung cancer, but at another point it alleged that he developed esophageal cancer.

Disease diminished his longevity and curtailed his life expectancy, Kiblinger wrote.

The widow seeks punitive damages.

The case has been assigned to a visiting judge, under special order of the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals. The Court consolidated all asbestos litigation under circuit judges Arthur Recht and James Wilson of Ohio County.

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