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Jury Awards $950,000 in Wrongful Death Case

05.01.1998

A Cook County Circuit Court jury on Friday awarded $950,000 to the family of a 19-year-old woman who was killed in a 1993 collision in Lemont, Illinois.

Chicago's Corboy & Demetrio represented the father and brother of Michelle Ganster, who was fatally injured in the Oct. 9, 1993, collision. Ms. Ganster was driving her vehicle west on Main Street in Lemont on her way to the Bolingbrook High School Homecoming football game when Dwight L. Parks, driving a Mack dump truck eastbound on Main, attempted to make a left turn onto Parker Road. His truck struck Ms. Ganster's vehicle, killing her instantly.

The wrongful death case was tried to verdict this week in the Circuit Court of Cook County before Judge Barbara J. Disko. At the close of evidence, Judge Disko directed a verdict in favor of the Ganster family on the issue of liability against Parks and his employer, Dillon Transport Inc. of McCook.

At the time of her death, Ms. Ganster, a graduate of Bolingbrook High School, was taking classes at the College of DuPage and was employed as a waitress.

At trial, the defendants introduced substantial evidence of the strained relationship between Michelle Ganster and her father. They suggested that the Gansters did not suffer any loss because Michelle and her father had stopped speaking after an argument 11 months prior to her death.

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