Madison - St. Clair Record

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Widow of man killed in go-cart crash granted leave to amend complaint

By Heather Isringhausen Gvillo | Nov 28, 2017

Madison County Circuit Judge Barbara Crowder granted a woman’s request to amend a wrongful death complaint alleging her husband died following a go-cart crash two years ago.

On Nov. 16, Crowder gave plaintiff Flora Odum 30 days to file an amended complaint. Odum filed the oral motion for leave to file an amended complaint to address the matters raised in the defendants’ motions to dismiss.

Odum, the surviving spouse of Thomas Odum, filed the 36-count lawsuit in May against Gateway Kartplex, Abbott Ambulance, Hertz Cops., Gateway Acquisitions, American Medical Response of Illinois, Gateway Motorsports, Gateway International Motorsports Corp. and Gateway Motorsports Corp. She also filed the suit on behalf of daughter Erin Kuehnel.

According to the suit, Thomas Odum was participating in a racing event for clients of Hertz and their employees at Gateway Motorsports Park in Madison on May 21, 2015, when his go-cart was allegedly thrown off track. The suit claims the go-cart went past barriers and through a chain link fence, and ultimately hit a concrete structure.

Flora Odum alleges the defendants failed to have first responders available to provide rescue services to her husband. She also claims that when an ambulance did arrive, it did not have the proper medical equipment and training to help him.

As a result, she alleges the decedent’s family members watched him suffer for approximately 25 minutes following the wreck before “proper” emergency services arrived on scene.

Flora Odum further alleges the decedent received extensive and on-going medical care to treat his injuries and later died as a result of the incident.

Flora Odum also claims the defendants “continued the racing that day” despite the wreck.

A Madison County coroner’s inquiry verdict states that the decedent died on May 25, 2015, as a result of heart failure, or specifically arteriosclerotic and hypertensive cardiovascular disease.

American Medical Response and Abbott Ambulance filed a motion to dismiss counts XIII-XX on Aug. 21 through attorneys Kim Luther and Andrew Luther of Luther & Associates in St. Louis.

“Because the allegations against Defendants AMR and Abbott involve allegations relating to these defendants failure to provided (sic) decedent with adequate healthcare services, Plaintiffs were required to file a healthcare affidavit with their original Complaint,” the motion states.

Odum is represented by J. Brad Wilmoth of Page Law in Kirkwood, Mo.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 17-L-632

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Madison County Circuit Court Page Law