Kansas City
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Lawsuit Settled in ’99 Concord Airplane Crash
The Charlotte Observer

4 companies to pay $26 million to kin of couple that was killed

A $26 million settlement has been reached in a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of David and Ann Drye of Concord, who died in a 1999 plane crash after taking off from Concord Regional Airport.

The settlement, paid by four companies, is believed to be the largest in a wrongful death suit in N.C. history, said Ertel Berry, legal editor for N.C. Lawyers Weekly. Berry publishes an annual list of the state’s largest verdicts and settlements.

“Our clients believe justice was served,” said Gary Robb, the family’s Kansas City, Mo. attorney. “They hope now to move on with their lives.”

Just after the plane took off for Anderson, S.C., pilot Kelly Ward radioed to controllers that the plane’s right engine was failing.

The suit claimed the engine failure caused the Dryes’ Cessna 421 to crash into a wooded area in Mecklenburg County, about three miles from the airport. The Dryes survived the initial crash but died after the plane caught fire, Robb said.

Ward and Mark Carlson, a vice president in David Drye’s Concord development firm, also died.

The Dryes’ children sued Teledyne Continental Motors, which made the airplane’s engines; Vibratech Inc., maker of an engine component; Stevens Aviation, which had provided services to the aircraft; and RAM Aircraft, which had overhauled it.

The suit, initially filed in Cabarrus County, was later transferred to Mecklenburg. A settlement was reached in October, Robb said.

It’s taken attorneys until now to prepare the paperwork to make the announcement, he said.

Attorneys representing Teledyne and RAM Aircraft could not be reached Thursday. Paul Reichs, the attorney representing Stevens Aviation, confirmed his client paid $250,000 toward the settlement but declined comment.

Brad Kutrow, who represents Vibratech, said his client was the last to settle and is now trying to recover from Teledyne the $2.8 million it paid to settle.

Record Settlement

Amounts paid toward settlement of the David and Ann Drye wrongful death suit, according to court documents:

Teledyne Continental Motors: $20 million
RAM Aircraft: $3 million
Vibratech Inc.: $2.8 million
Stevens Aviation: $250,000

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Personal Injury Lawyers - Kansas City, Missouri

Personal injury is an area of law that pertains to the injury of an individual. Both physical and emotional injuries fall into this branch of tort law. A personal injury lawyer is generally involved in cases where an injury has occurred due to the negligence of another party.

Examples of cases that a personal injury lawyer in Kansas City, Missouri can assist with include workplace accidents, falling or other accidents in the home, premises liability, defective and hazardous product cases, and dental and medical malpractice cases. If negligence on behalf of another party can be proved in court, compensation may be awarded.

Personal injury attorneys can also assist with industrial disease cases that may include respiratory diseases or a decline in health due to hazardous occupational conditions. These and other medical cases are often very complex, and it is advised that all aspects of the claim be handled by an experienced attorney.

Wrongful Death Lawyers - Kansas City, Missouri

Wrongful death falls under the common law jurisdictions wherein a person may be held liable for a death. It is important to note that wrongful death is the only course of legal action in which a company, rather than an individual, is at fault for a death.

In Kansas City, Missouri, cases involving wrongful death accidents require a preponderance of evidence as the standard of proof. Generally, the suit is filed by close relatives.

This web site is designed for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship. Past results afford no guarantee of future results. Every case is different and must be judged on its own merits.

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