Couple blames oil distributors for husband's benzene exposure

Molly English-Bowers Dec. 29, 2015, 2:44pm


An Illinois couple is suing companies including Marathon and Chevron, alleging exposure to benzene led to the diagnosis of a serious medical condition in the husband.

Jerry Correll and Mary Correll filed a lawsuit Dec. 8 in Madison County Circuit Court against Marathon Petroleum Corporation, Meyer Oil Company, Illinois Tool Works and Chevron USA, alleging negligence and other counts.

According to the complaint, from 1964 to 1969, Jerry Correll worked at a refinery in Lawrenceville, owned and operated by Chevron and, while there, he was exposed to benzene. From 1969 to 1999, he worked at Marathon's refinery in Robinson where he also was exposed to benzene, the suit says.

The lawsuit states Correll has purchased Marathon-branded gasoline for personal use from a gas station at 301 W. Main St. in Robinson, which was owned and operated by Meyer. That gasoline contained benzene. He also purchased Chevron brand gasoline that exposed him to benzene, the suit alleges.

Correll further purchased and used a carb-and-choke cleaner manufactured by Illinois Tool Works and containing benzene, the lawsuit states.

As a result of all this exposure, the suit says, the plaintiff developed myeoldyspastic syndrome, a blood cell disorder with which he was diagnosed on May 18.

The Corrells seek a trial by jury, at least $50,000 from each defendant, court costs and attorney fees. They are represented by attorneys Thomas E. Schwartz and Justin D. Guerra of Holloran Schwartz & Gaertner LLP of St. Louis.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 15-L-1553

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