A recently deceased mechanic and Army veteran is being remembered by his daughter, who is fighting to receive compensation for his death at the hands of the asbestos cancer mesothelioma.
Samuel Mann worked as a mechanic while serving in the United States Army from 1959 to 1961. After his military service had ended, he went to work as a mechanic at Crown Cork and Seal from 1965 until the early 1970s. For the next several years, he did construction work, then—from 1976 to 1983—was employed as a welder, mechanic and shop foreman for Norfolk Southern Railroad.
Now Mann’s daughter, Theresa Mann Adams, of Georgia, is bringing suit against these companies to hold them accountable for the asbestos exposure which led to the deadly mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma is nearly always caused by exposure to asbestos, a carcinogenic mineral material which was used in the mid-20th Century for insulating, fireproofing, and strengthening other building materials and consumer goods. Asbestos-containing materials, when they are manufactured, installed, or damage, can release into the surrounding atmosphere a vast quantity of microscopic fibers, which can then be inhaled. Because the fibers are small enough to pass through the lungs’ natural filtration system, but also sharp and needle-like, they can then embed themselves into the mesothelium—a membrane which covers and protects the lungs and the internal surface of the chest cavity. Tumors can develop on this membrane, although it may take years or even decades for them to be discovered.
By the time the cancer is diagnosed, it has typically become so advanced that traditional treatments—such as surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy—are ineffectual. Many patients enter hospice treatment shortly after diagnosis, and receive pain medication or palliative measures in order to make the remainder of their life as comfortable as possible. The average life expectancy for an individual who has this devastating cancer is less than 18 months, with many patients living only a few months, or even weeks.
Mesothelioma is a fatal form of cancer which affects only 2,000 to 3,000 new patients in the United States annually.