West Virginia Record

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Woman names 19 companies in lawsuit over husband's leukemia diagnosis, death

State Court

By Kyla Asbury | Jan 9, 2020


MOUNDSVILLE – A woman is suing 19 companies over the death of her husband, alleging his exposure to a chemical caused him to develop a type of leukemia.

Mary Kay Virden filed the lawsuit on the behalf of Charles E. Virden against Covestro LLC, Ashland LLC, Avantor Inc., Axiall Corp., BP Amoco Chemical Co., BP Products North America Inc., Chevron USA Inc., Exxon Mobil Corp., Hess Corp., Shell Chemical LP, Sunoco (R&M) LLC, Tauber Oil Co., Texaco Inc., Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc., United States Steel Corp., Valero Refining-Texas LP, Hexion Inc., Celanese Corp. and Sistersville Tank Works Inc. alleging they were responsible for Charles Virden's diagnosis of acute myeloid leukemia, according to a complaint filed in Marshall Circuit Court.

Mary Kay Virden claims her husband suffered and sustained the severe illness and injury, which forced him to obtain medical care and treatment in an amount in excess of $250,000.

"(Charles) Virden suffered severe and permanently disabling personal injuries as well as psychological injuries, great pain, extreme nervousness, mental anguish and untimely death as a direct and proximate result of his development of acute myeloid leukemia..." the complaint states.

Mary Kay Virden claims her husband's enjoyment of life was greatly impaired and he experienced annoyance, inconvenience, humiliation, embarrassment and aggravation. She claims she lost the consortium and services of her husband from the date of his diagnosis until his death.

Charles Virden was diagnosed on Aug. 22, 2017, and died on Nov. 4, 2017, as a result of contracting the disease, according to the suit.

Mary Kay Virden claims the defendants failed to warn employees of the dangers of benzene and failed to take reasonable precautions or to exercise reasonable care to publish, adopt and enforce a safety plan or a safe method of handling and working with benzene.

Mary Kay Virden is seeking compensatory and punitive damages. She is represented by R. Dean Hartley and Tejinder Singh of Hartley Law Group in Wheeling.

Marshall Circuit Court case number 19-C-252

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