A California man and his wife have filed an asbestos suit against 55 defendant corporations, claiming the mesothelioma with which the man was diagnosed was wrongfully caused.

Arvid and May Johnson claim Arvid was diagnosed with the disease Sept. 15, according to a lawsuit filed Sept. 25 in Madison County Circuit Court.

They say Arvid worked from 1947 until 2004 for various companies, including the U.S. Navy, Ace Hardware and various filling stations.

They state Arvid's exposure was foreseeable and should have been anticipated by the defendants, according to the lawsuit.

They claim his disease was caused after he was exposed to and inhaled, ingested or otherwise absorbed asbestos fibers.

The Johnsons allege the asbestos-related disease disabled and disfigured Arvid and has caused substantial medical costs. Arvid also has and will continue to experience physical pain and mental anguish, they claim in the lawsuit.

Mesothelioma hindered and prevented Arvid from pursuing his normal course of employment, according to the suit.

As a result, he lost large sums of money, the Johnsons claim.

Because of the disease, May claims she has been deprived of the support, devotion, care, society and consortium of Arvid.

In the four-count lawsuit, the couple is seeking sums in excess of $50,000, punitive and exemplary damages in excess of $100,000 and compensatory damages in excess of $50,000.

They are represented by Richard L. Saville, Jr., Robert J. Evola, Ethan A. Flint and David J. Page of Saville, Evola & Flint in Alton.

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