Chicago, IL (Law Firm Newswire) April 23, 2014 – After a 10-day trial, a Cook County jury awarded $6.65 million to the family of a man who died from a fall at a Kuwait air base.
The award in the wrongful death case against CAV International Inc., a government contractor, came over four years after the death of John Bruce, a Chicago-area resident.
“When negligence is involved, a wrongful death lawsuit is often appropriate to gain compensation for the family of the victim after a horrible accident like this,” says Paul Greenberg, a Chicago wrongful death attorney not involved in the case.
When the accident occurred, Bruce was working for United Airlines as a ramp serviceman at Al-Mubarak Air Base in Kuwait. According to the lawsuit, Bruce was handling cargo from a Boeing 747 on a raised belt loader when an employee of CAV moved it, causing Bruce to fall approximately 12 feet.
Bruce suffered serious injuries to his brain that required surgery and ultimately led to his death. He was declared brain-dead by doctors overseas and flown home. His life support was discontinued at a hospital six days later.
The lawsuit alleged that the CAV employee was distracted by a conversation with others when he moved the loader with Bruce still on it. It further claimed that the company negligently failed to provide proper training and supervision to that employee. The family’s attorney said that CAV was responsible for the actions and inaction of the employee.
His widow, Patty Bruce, told news sources that Bruce had worked for United for years as a liaison on charter flights — both for the military and for a number of Chicago sports teams, including the Bears, Cubs and White Sox. At the time of her husband’s death, she said that the tragedy never should have occurred and that the family wanted justice. Her attorney has stated that CAV failed to reach out to the family to provide information or closure after the accident, but that the family believed that justice has been served with the jury’s award.
Bruce is survived by his wife and two sons. He was 64 years old at the time of his death.
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