Former Electrician And Dad-Of-Two Died Of Mesothelioma
A York hospice has been given a £7,000 funding boost after specialist lawyers recovered costs related to the care that the charity provided to a man before his death from asbestos-related disease.
Jim Benson, of Acomb, York, died aged 77, around four months after he was diagnosed with mesothelioma. A terminal cancer of the lining of the lung, it is often associated with exposure to asbestos.
Lawyers help family after mesothelioma diagnosis
Prior to the electrician’s death, Jim and his wife of 54 years, Kathleen, 76, instructed specialist asbestos-related disease lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate how he came to develop the illness. The experts went on to secure justice for his loved ones by settling a claim against two of his former employers.
In addition, a previous landmark judgment secured by Irwin Mitchell also meant that the family’s legal team could recover costs related to the care that Jim received from St Leonard’s Hospice. As a result, around £7,000 has now been passed to the charity.
The donation has been made as families and organisations mark Action Mesothelioma Day. Taking place on 2 July, the commemoration aims to raises awareness of the terrible impact of the cancer.
Expert Opinion“So many hospices across the UK carry out incredibly important work, providing vital support to individuals and their families at tough times.
“As such, we’re delighted to have been able to recover these costs and give something back to St Leonard’s which does so much to help people in the area. It also means that families have a chance to say thank you, while it could go some way to helping others in the future as well.
“However, we also hope that this case and the pain and suffering Jim and his family had to endure acts as a warning to the dangers of asbestos and the need to employers to ensure their protect their staff at all times.” Lucy Andrews - Associate Solicitor
Asbestos-related cancer: Jim Benson's story
During his career Jim, a father-of two and grandfather-of four worked as an electrical engineer in a hospital and encountered asbestos on lagging covering pipes and radiators.
He went on to become an appliance repair electrician, working on domestic appliances like cookers, storage heaters and fires that contained asbestos.
Jim first developed symptoms including breathlessness in 2019. Following tests he was diagnosed with mesothelioma in November that year. As his condition deteriorated, he was cared for at St Leonard’s Hospice. Jim died January 2020.
Family thank St Leonard's Hospice York for 'incredible care'
Jim’s daughter Elaine Gears, 51, said: “It was awful to see how the cancer affected Dad, but the hospice took incredible care of him.
“At such a horrible and upsetting time for our family everyone at the hospice was wonderful. They showed us so much empathy and compassion and provided the best care they could for Dad which we’ll always be grateful for.
“Life continues to be difficult and we all miss Dad. He was the rock of our family and we think about him every day.
“We know nothing can make up for what happened but we wanted to do something to honour his memory. The donation to St Leonard’s is just our way of saying thank you and trying to give something back.
“We hope that this money means others will get the same quality support that Dad had.”
Find out more about our expertise in supporting families following a mesothelioma diagnosis at our dedicated asbestos-related disease section. Alternatively to speak to an expert contact us or call 0370 1500 100.