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Supreme Court of New York, Schenectady County

In this suit, the family of a man who perished from mesothelioma sued the maker of an asbestos-containing talc. The matter was resolved by a jury after the defendant denied that their product contained asbestos.

In the 1970s, the decedent, Richard C., worked with the asbestos-contaminated talc while working for an Ohio ceramics company during summers in high school. The ceramics company, Maxfield Ceramics, used the defendant, Vanderbilt’s talc, as one of the raw materials for the manufacture of ceramic products. The deadly asbestos-containing talc was mined by Vanderbilt in Gouverneur, New York, from ________ through ________ when it closed the mine. Mr. C., the 52-year-old decedent, perished from mesothelioma, a form of cancer linked to asbestos exposure.

The family of the decedent filed suit in the Supreme Court of Schenectady County, New York. The defendant, R.T. Vanderbilt, Inc. was named on a product liability action for a failure to warn of the hazards associated with their product. The plaintiffs sought recovery of wrongful death damages. The defendant denied that their product contained asbestos.

At trial, the plaintiff showed that despite defendant’s claims, their talc coming from the Gouverneur mine did contain asbestos. The jury furthermore heard testimony from defendant’s expert witness that decedent’s lung tissue contained the same type of asbestos found in defendant’s talc. The plaintiff also showed that numerous workers who mined and milled the talc later developed mesothelioma. Finally, the plaintiff showed that defendant, Vanderbilt, had received test results prior to decedent’s contact with their talc that indicated the presence of substantial amounts of asbestos therein.The matter was resolved by a jury verdict for $________ to the family of the deceased.

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