Robert Cowger, personal representative for the heirs and estate of Barbara Cowger, deceased, and her husband Bill Cowger filed an asbestos complaint against two defendants - Georgia-Pacific and John Crane Inc. - in St. Clair County Circuit Court on Dec. 13.
The suit claims that Bill Cowger, husband of Barbara Cowger, worked from 1963 to 2008 as a drywaller for various contractors. During the course of his employment, his wife was exposed to and inhaled, ingested or otherwise absorbed large amounts of asbestos fibers emanating from certain products he worked with and around which were manufactured, sold, distributed or installed by the defendants.
According to court records filed by Robert Cowger and his attorneys Gori, Julian & Associates P.C. and Karst & Von Oiste LLP the defendants knew or should have known the products had a toxic, poisonous and highly damaging effect upon persons inhaling, ingesting or otherwise absorbing them. Barbara Cowger developed lung cancer that ultimately led to her death as a direct and proximate result of one or more of the acts of negligence on the part of the defendants.
The defendants are also accused of several acts of omission amounting to willful and wanton misconduct.
A third count states that conspirator defendants (both named and not named) as agents of one another and as co-conspirators, agreed and conspired among themselves and with other asbestos manufacturers, distributors and trade organizations to injure the deceased by willfully conspiring to publish false and misleading reports of the health hazards of asbestos.
Judgments in excess of $50,000 for each of the charges have been entered against the defendants.St. Clair Circuit Court Case No. 13-L-618.