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Jury rules for family asbestos exposure case represented by Simmons Hanly Conroy

From left to right: First row: Simmons Hanly Conroy (Firm) shareholder Karoline Carstens, Kimberlee Behling (wife of Brandon), Howard Behling, Melissa Gray, Brandon Behling. Second row: Trial technician Brian Marbut, Firm litigation support specialist Laura Scarborough, Firm paralegal supervisor Kristi Conway, Chris Grey (husband of Melissa), and Firm shareholders Andy Murrie and Andy Williams. Back row: Firm shareholders Shane Hampton and Dan Blouin.

Simmons Hanly Conroy, one of the nation’s largest mass torts firms and a national leader in the legal representation of mesothelioma patients and their families, has secured a $6 million verdict against Ford Motor Company on behalf of the family of Linda Behling, a Missouri resident who died in 2019 of mesothelioma, a rare and fatal cancer caused by asbestos exposure.

Mrs. Behling was exposed to asbestos in the 1980s while working as a laborer at a custom limousine manufacturer in Missouri. She suffered repeated asbestos exposures to the toxic dust while servicing asbestos-containing brakes manufactured by Ford Motor Company.

The jury found Ford at fault and awarded $6 million in compensatory damages. It is the fourth verdict the firm has secured against Ford.

“After examining the evidence, the jury found that Ford was a fault,” said Simmons Hanly Conroy Shareholder Daniel P. Blouin, who served as lead trial attorney. “Nothing will bring Linda back, but this verdict is a statement that our system can hold companies accountable.”

In addition to Blouin, Simmons Hanly Conroy Shareholders Brian Cooke, Andy Murrie, Andy Williams, Karoline Carstens and Shane F. Hampton represented the Behling family in the Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis before the Hon. Elizabeth Byrne Hogan.

“Linda worked hard for her family,” said Blouin. “She should be enjoying retirement, but she was lost too soon to a cancer diagnosis that could have been prevented.”

Mrs. Behling was 70 years old when she was diagnosed with mesothelioma. In addition to her direct exposure to asbestos, she was also exposed through her husband Howard, who was employed at the same company. The limousine manufacturing company cut new Ford Towncars in half and converted the vehicles into limousines. They worked with Ford asbestos-containing brakes in the facility daily.

In addition to her husband, Mrs. Behling left behind two grown children, Brandon and Melissa; five grandchildren; and a great-grandchild. Her grandchildren enjoyed spending time with her most every weekend. She looked forward to attending her grandchildren’s sporting events and spending time with her family at the lake.

The verdict is the 13th mesothelioma verdict Simmons Hanly Conroy has won on behalf of mesothelioma patients in the past five years. Mrs. Behling’s trial lasted two weeks, and the jury deliberated for three hours and 30 minutes.

The case is Howard Behling, Melissa Gray and Brandon Behling, as the Surviving Heirs of Linda Behling, Deceased v. Ford Motor Company, et al., case no. 1922-CC12004 in Missouri’s 22nd Judicial Court in St. Louis.

About Simmons Hanly Conroy 

Simmons Hanly Conroy is one of the nation’s largest mass tort law firms, dedicated to helping victims of mesothelioma and asbestos-related cancers. Other primary areas of litigation include prescription opioids, sexual abuse, pharmaceutical, consumer protection, environmental, and personal injury. Firm attorneys have been appointed to leadership in numerous national multidistrict litigations, including prescription opioids, Vioxx, Yaz, and Toyota Unintended Acceleration. The firm also represents small and mid-size corporations, inventors and entrepreneurs in matters involving business litigation. Firm attorneys’ passion for improving the lives of asbestos victims and their families extends to the firm’s contributions to mesothelioma cancer research and ongoing support through initiatives including the firm’s annual Miles for Meso 5K race and fun run/walk. Firm offices are located in New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, St. Louis, and Alton, Illinois. Read more at

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