Motivational Leader Loses Dreams to Mesothelioma
When leadership trainer James Hellam learned from his doctor that the mesothelioma diagnosis he was given in 2011 was a result of exposure to asbestos dust, he called on Kazan Law to bring justice to those who caused his deadly disease. A San Jose, California police officer for 13 years prior to becoming a global motivational speaker, Mr. Hellam’s exposure to asbestos occurred over five summers when he began working for his grandfather’s one man operation, Monterey Boiler Service, at the age of 15.
Before his diagnosis, Mr. Hellam was an extremely active and healthy 65 year old Hall of Fame softball player with a very active professional and personal life. He had planned to continue his leadership training for another decade, and to share his active leisure time with his grown sons, step daughters and the grandchildren he hoped to coach on the baseball field. Those plans, unfortunately, were all taken away from him when he became ill and was put on a journey in which he would endure one of the most difficult surgeries a human being could undergo.
Neither Mr. Hellam nor his grandfather were warned that the products purchased from Crane Co’s “Crane Supply” wholesale outlet in Salinas, California for the process of refurbishing boilers contained asbestos and were a health hazard. Yet our firm presented evidence showing that Crane Co corporate officers knew or should have known as early as the 1930s that asbestos causes diseases that kill.
Unfortunately, this story is just one of many that our firm has been involved with for coming up on 40 years. It’s why we continue to fight hard for justice for our clients and for those who will receive a mesothelioma diagnosis in the future.