Murray & Murray Co., L.P.A. recently obtained a settlement with the State of Ohio for a resident from the Ohio Veteran’s Home in Sandusky. This veteran had served two tours in the Vietnam War as a forward observer for the artillery before his Honorable Discharge from the U.S. Marines in 1969. Following a stroke, he was no longer able to live independently and was admitted to the nursing home at OVH. On the night of his death, the resident left OVH on a motorized scooter belonging to a previously deceased resident and was struck by a car as he crossed U.S. 250 in front of the OVH.
Margaret and Charlie Murray represented the resident’s estate in wrongful death litigation against the State. The Murrays argued that OVH had a duty to provide the resident with a safe environment, to provide him with adequate and timely medical care, and to ensure that he did not leave the premises alone and without letting his family know where he was going. They also argued that the failure to ensure that there was a process implemented to protect at-risk residents from eloping directly resulted in the resident’s death. OVH and its employees knew that the resident was a flight risk. The resident’s solo ventures out while living at OVH facilities were well-documented by the home.
The OVH denied any safety rules were violated and both the family and the State hired experts to review the facts and address the issues and concerns. After nearly two years of intense litigation, the family was able to obtain a settlement of $200,000 for the resident’s estate, providing relief and closure to the veteran’s family without the added stress of an emotional trial.