Paul Coyle was a very articulate and genuine individual. Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Paul enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1960. He served a 3-year tour as a boiler tender on the USS Arnold J. Isbell DD-869. He spent a year on the ship in dry dock in Bremerton, Washington. Paul was honorably discharged in August 1963, and married his wife, Carolyn, just one year later.
As a boiler tender for the U.S. Navy, Paul spent his waking hours in the ship’s boiler rooms maintaining proper function and performing routine maintenance. His duties required him to work with and around asbestos-containing products and equipment on a daily basis, as well as, working around other crewmen using such materials. The asbestos-containing products included insulating cement, gaskets and refractory cement. Paul regularly breathed the dust created by the work unaware of its hazards.
Paul, a life-long nonsmoker, was diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma in February 2000. Mesothelioma is a deadly cancer caused by asbestos exposure. This news came as a shock to the family. Paul was self-employed as a contract distributor of national appliance brands in St. Charles, Missouri. He had partnered up with his brother-in-law and they created their own company providing appliances to builders, remodelers, and kitchen dealers. The business was doing well.
Unfortunately, Paul’s illness drastically affected the Coyles financially. Paul was the breadwinner. He and his wife had plans to continue growing the new business until Paul could cut back on his hours. Then they were going to spend their free time traveling, but that all changed with Paul’s mesothelioma diagnosis. As soon as he fell ill, Carolyn quit her job to care for him. Just three months later, at the age of 57, Paul died of mesothelioma – the result of his exposure to asbestos while in the navy. Only a few months after Paul’s passing, Carolyn, still grieving, had to return to work in order to provide for herself.
Waters Kraus & Paul filed the Coyles’ case in late 2000. The Coyles’ daughter, Christine, continued to make trips home from Chicago to be with Carolyn, who had trouble sleeping through the night. Carolyn persevered and kept in close contact with Waters Kraus & Paul as their asbestos case progressed, and rial was successfully reached in the fall of 2003. Carolyn, now almost 60 years old, finally had solace knowing her financial situation would be taken care of and her husband’s death was not in vain.
The following year, Waters Kraus & Paul accompanied Carolyn, along with several other asbestos victims and victims’ families to Washington, D.C. to discuss the Asbestos Bill. While there, she met with her senators told them how the Asbestos Bill would have affected the outcome of her case and future asbestos cases by not allowing victims and their families to have their cases heard by judge or jury. The Asbestos Bill failed, and another victory for the Coyles was won.