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Home » Latest News » A former labourer from Hull died of Mesothelioma – His children are desperate to find out why

A former labourer from Hull died of Mesothelioma – His children are desperate to find out why

A former labourer from Hull died of Mesothelioma – His children are desperate to find out why

We would very much like to hear from any colleagues of Ronald Cundill who remember working with him.

Former Hull labourer Ronald Cundill started to experience respiratory problems about 3 years ago. What started with him feeling out of breath, developed into a much more serious respiratory problem. By the time he went into hospital to have fluid removed from his lungs, at Christmas time 2018, he was very ill indeed.
 
Nevertheless, the last thing that his family expected to be told after tests were carried out during Ronald’s stay in the hospital, was that he was suffering from an asbestos-related disease. Ronald was diagnosed with one of the two most serious forms of asbestos disease. Ronald was told that he had Mesothelioma, a form of cancer that develops in the lining of the lungs. At present, there is no cure for Mesothelioma. Ronald passed away from the illness on the 26th of March 2019.
 
The only known cause of Mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos dust or fibres. Despite asbestos having been banned in two stages, in 1985 and 1999, people are still dying today as a result of being exposed to asbestos as many as 60 or more years or go. The reason for this is that asbestos fibres lie dormant on the lungs for many years after being inhaled, before starting to cause the symptoms of asbestos disease. Many of the 5,000 people who are still dying from asbestos disease each year in the UK, only get diagnosed with the illness in their 70s or 80s.
 
Ronald’s family are now desperate to find answers as to how Ronald came to be exposed to asbestos. They have turned to expert asbestos disease lawyer, Leanne Keating, a partner at Bridge McFarland LLP of Hull to help them find some answers.
 
One of Ronald’s seven children, Steven Cundill told us:
 
“When the hospital told us that Dad was suffering from Mesothelioma, it came as a hammer blow to us. Dad was a labourer almost all his working life until he retired at 65. He’d been a fit man throughout that time and during most of his retirement. It was only in the last 2 to 3 years of his life that he started to get breathless. He deteriorated quite rapidly and, in the end, he had difficulty walking any distance at all. When he went into the hospital, the last thing we expected, was to be told that exposure to asbestos was the cause of his problems.
 
"Up until the last three years of his life, he’d been very active. In retirement, he kept himself busy. He was always working on jobs around the home. He enjoyed walking and going shopping with our Mum. He was very much a family man and we all miss him terribly, as we do our Mum who sadly passed away about a month after Dad died. We are determined to find out how he came to be exposed to asbestos during his working life and we hope that someone reading this may be able to help us out by contacting our lawyers.”
 
It is known that in or around 1950, at the age of 19, Ronald started to work as a labourer in the dockyards of the Port of Hull. How long he worked there exactly is unknown, but Steven Cundill believes that it was for quite a few years. It is on record that he thereafter worked at Kingston Architectural Craftsmen Ltd, where he assisted in the manufacture of wooden window frames. From 1970 to 1972, he worked for W Marsden & Co Ltd, who built door frames. Steven also believes that Ronald worked for or at the site of, Spooners (Hull) Ltd, who built new schools and medical clinics in the area.
 
Solicitor Leanne Keating said:
 
“Ronald Cundill’s children are still in a state of shock from learning that their father died of mesothelioma. There is no doubt that the cause of his disease was exposure to asbestos. That exposure is very likely to have occurred at one or possibly more of the places that Ronald worked. We would very much like to hear from any colleagues of Ronald Cundill who remember working with him at any time. They may be able to provide some useful information about the conditions under which they and Ronald worked. I invite anyone who does remember working with Ronald, to contact me on 01482 320620 or by emailing me at info@bmcf.co.uk.”