Loved Ones Join With Lawyers To Seek Answers Regarding His Illness
The family of a grandfather-of-six who died a month after being diagnosed with asbestos-related cancer is appealing for help to establish what caused the disease that claimed his life.
Brian Vodrey, from Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent, died aged 80 from mesothelioma – a cancer of the lining of the lung commonly linked to contact with asbestos materials, often decades previously.
Following his death, Brian’s family instructed specialist asbestos-related disease lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate how he developed the illness.
The legal experts are now keen to hear from anyone who may recall working with Brian during his number of years of employment at H & R Johnson Tiles Ltd in Stoke-on-Trent between 1959 and 1998 and whether he was exposed to asbestos in that time.
The appeal coincides with Action Mesothelioma Day, taking place on 3 July.
Expert Opinion“Brian’s story is sadly similar to a great number of cases we are involved in, with the devastating consequences of his asbestos exposure only becoming clear in the final years of his life.
His loved ones remain desperate for answers regarding how he developed mesothelioma and we now believe it may have taken place at this employer. However, we require more information as to whether that was the case so would be grateful to anyone who may be able to come forward and help us.”
Iain Shoolbred - Senior Associate Solicitor
Brian married wife Margaret in 1960. They had three daughters, Julie Grimley, 57, Diane Mason, 54, and 52-year-old Susan Woodhouse. Margaret died in 2017.
Brian was employed as a mould maker and created bathroom accessories during his time at H & R Johnson Tiles Ltd. He initially worked at the company’s site in High Street, Tunstall, before moving to its factory at The Moore’s and another establishment at Adderley Green.
He began suffering symptoms of tiredness and lethargy in January 2019. Following tests he was diagnosed with mesothelioma in March 2019. He died on 9 April.
Before he died, Brian recalled that each of the environments could be very dusty and specifically remembered that there was lagging on pipework across some of the premises.
He also recalled an incident in the early 1980s where an asbestos removal operation was undertaken at one of the sites, with part of the building being partially sectioned off with sheeting. However, he believed that workers were still sent into the partitioned area to collect items for a couple of weeks until senior managers found out and ended the practice.
His daughter Susan said: “Dad was the most loving caring person you could wish to meet. He was never happier then when spending time with his family or in his garden. He loved his garden, but also spent time playing snooker with his brother Gordon, and also enjoyed playing bowls.
“It was absolutely devastating losing Dad. To see his condition deteriorate so quickly as the cancer took hold was awful. We felt that we never really got to say goodbye to him properly.
“The entire family continue to miss him and we have so many questions regarding how he got the illness.
“Dad worked at H & R Johnson Tiles Ltd for much of his life, so it is hard to take that he may have been exposed to asbestos there. However, we need more information to discover if that was the case and would appreciate any help as we look to get answers.”
Brian’s loved ones are making the appeal in conjunction with Action Mesothelioma Day on 3 July, which campaigns to raise awareness of this incurable disease, remember those affected by it and help fund research into finding a cure.
Anyone with information related to this case is asked to contact Iain Shoolbred at Irwin Mitchell’s Birmingham office on 0121 214 5446 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Find out more on Irwin Mitchell's expertise in handling asbestos-related disease cases