Linda’s Story

Linda Behling spent years working at a custom limousine facility in Missouri, unaware of the danger she faced on a daily basis while servicing asbestos-containing brakes manufactured by Ford Motor Company.

Decades after her initial exposure to asbestos, Linda was diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma. Before her passing, she took one final step to ensure her husband and children’s well-being: Linda encouraged them to file a mesothelioma lawsuit with the help of Simmons Hanly Conroy.

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An Unexpected Mesothelioma Diagnosis

For years, Linda and her husband Howard knew something was wrong — but they never thought to connect her health issues to the work she did in the 1980s.

Despite numerous hospital visits, nobody could figure out the cause of the chest pain Linda experienced. She’d often ask Howard to pound on her back, which would temporarily relieve the pain.

Finally, while speaking with her cardiologist about a separate issue, Linda’s doctor referred her to a specialist at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis for her chest pain. Here, doctors took a sample from her lungs and sent it to a lab for testing.

Just a few days later, Linda and Howard received a phone call that would alter the course of their lives forever.

“I was sitting not too far from her. And I heard the lady say because Linda had it on speakerphone, ‘You have mesothelioma, Ms. Behling.’ She looked at me and she said, ‘Well, that changes things, don’t it?’”
– Howard, Linda’s Husband

A Family Torn Apart

Family was at the heart of Linda’s existence. After 48 years of marriage, she and Howard had two adult children, five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Linda cherished her role as a grandmother. She spent every weekend with her grandkids, and she loved taking them on trips and going to their sports games.

“Linda took the grandkids on vacation, to the zoo, to Tulsa, to Branson. They went everywhere with grandma.”
– Howard, Linda’s Husband

At 70 years old, Linda was still committed to taking care of her loved ones and making sure everyone in her family had what they needed. However, her unexpected mesothelioma diagnosis changed everything.

Following her diagnosis, Linda’s health deteriorated, and frequent hospital stays disrupted her and Howard’s daily lives.

The immense joy that Linda felt from spending time with her expanding family was cut short due to her illness, which was directly caused by the negligence of asbestos companies.

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Holding Asbestos Companies Accountable

Before her diagnosis, Linda and Howard didn’t realize that mesothelioma was caused by asbestos exposure.

“We didn’t know that mesothelioma was really even related to asbestos. We had heard things, but officially, like this causes this, I don’t remember actually hearing that or seeing it,” explained Howard.

Many companies that made asbestos products knew that their products were dangerous, and Howard was furious to learn these large corporations had prioritized profit over the safety of their employees and consumers.

Linda knew that taking legal action would allow her to continue caring for her family, even after she passed away. She urged her kids to contact a mesothelioma law firm, and from there, the family’s legal team took care of everything.

The mesothelioma attorneys at Simmons Hanly Conroy were determined to uncover the truth for Linda and her family. After learning more about her work history, we discovered that Linda had worked with asbestos-containing brakes made by Ford Motor Company at her job in Missouri.

The Simmons Hanly Conroy Difference

A few days after Howard’s kids first contacted Simmons Hanly Conroy, Attorney Andrew Murrie called Howard and scheduled a time to meet him at his house.

Howard appreciated Andrew’s professionalism and good-natured attitude, and the two quickly established a strong relationship.

Unfortunately, it was around this time that Linda’s health began to rapidly decline. Soon after her family started the legal process, Linda tragically passed away, leaving a void in the lives of those who loved her.

In the face of this heartbreaking loss, the Behling family found strength in their commitment to securing justice on behalf of their beloved wife, mother and grandmother.

With Simmons Hanly Conroy by their side, Howard and his kids pressed on, honoring Linda’s memory while navigating a lawsuit against Ford. Their compassionate legal team strived to make filing a mesothelioma lawsuit as simple as possible during this challenging time.

“To me, I think the Simmons difference is those people are absolutely top shelf,” Howard remarked. “I didn’t have to do anything except make a phone call, and the kids did that for me. That was an awesome bunch of people.”

The family was able to focus on grieving the loss of Linda and paying tribute to her memory while the firm pursued mesothelioma compensation on their behalf.

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The Fight for Justice

While the majority of mesothelioma lawsuits end in a settlement, Linda’s case went to trial. Nevertheless, the asbestos lawyers at Simmons Hanly Conroy were unwavering in their commitment to fight for justice on behalf of Linda and her family in court.

Howard was particularly impressed by Daniel Blouin, the lead trial attorney in the case, and his ability to quickly disprove falsehoods presented by the defendants during trial.

“That guy’s awesome, man. Do not get in that man’s way when he’s fighting for you,” Howard said. “I would go to war with that guy any day of the week.”

The support that Howard received from his legal team was invaluable, and he now describes them as family. He’s grateful for how hard they fought to secure justice on behalf of Linda.

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

Finding Peace & Financial Security

At the end of a two-week trial, the team at Simmons Hanly Conroy was able to secure a favorable verdict for Howard, his kids and the grandkids.

Mesothelioma is an expensive disease, and Medicare hadn’t covered all of the hospital bills that accumulated while Linda was sick.

Her family found themselves struggling financially, and they worried about how they would provide Linda with the burial she deserved — until they began to receive compensation from the companies responsible for Linda’s exposure to asbestos.

“When it came time for her to actually go to the cemetery, we were concerned about where the money was going to come from to do this,” Howard explained. “So when we got the first check, we went first right away and had the headstone done.”

Today, Linda’s gravesite serves as a place for her loved ones to gather and reflect on all of the fond memories she left them with.

While no amount of money can make up for the loss of Linda’s life, generations of her loved ones will be supported — thanks to Linda’s decision to push her children to take legal action.

Help for Families Impacted by Mesothelioma

Linda’s story is a testament to the strength of family, pursuit of justice and importance of seeking help in the face of mesothelioma.

As a national mesothelioma law firm, Simmons Hanly Conroy has the resources and experience necessary to help families like Linda’s who have been impacted by mesothelioma.

While it’s impossible to prepare for a mesothelioma diagnosis, our team can provide support and assistance during the uncertainty that follows. Filing a mesothelioma claim can help pay for medical bills, burial expenses, lost wages and more.

“If I ever had to do it again, I’d contact Simmons Hanly Conroy in a heartbeat,” Howard said.

Call (800) 326-8900 now to learn more about how we may be able to help you and your family. It costs nothing to speak with us.

Simmons Support Team
Simmons Hanly ConroyWritten by:

Editorial Team

The Simmons Hanly Conroy Editorial Team consists of journalists, writers and editors who strive to deliver accurate and useful information to families needing legal help. Our team works alongside the firm's attorneys and partners, as well as with medical professionals and other specialists, to keep all information relevant and helpful.