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Family of Marine Corps vet sues Pittsburgh VA for wrongful death

The University Drive campus of VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System.

PITTSBURGH — The family of an Aliquippa, Pa., veteran who died while being treated for lung cancer and after contracting Legionnaire’s disease filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Veterans Affairs Pittsburgh Healthcare System.

Clint Compston filed the lawsuit in federal court Monday on behalf of his father, Clark E. Compston, a Marine Corps veteran who died Nov. 14, 2011, at age 74.

According to the lawsuit, Clark Compston suffered from small cell lung cancer and was being treated at the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Pittsburgh when he was exposed to Legionnaire’s disease on or about Sept. 28, 2011.

The suit claims that despite showing symptoms of the disease, the hospital delayed testing Compston for days, even though VA personnel knew Legionnaire’s was spreading through the facility.

On Oct. 27, 2011, Compston declined further chemotherapy after his “bad experience with Legionnaire’s disease” and was transferred to a palliative care unit, where he died several weeks later.

The suit says the family is seeking funeral expenses, medical and hospital expenses and other damages.

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