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Leslie Thayer was the Deceased Plaintiff in the case of Thayer v. Liggett & Myers.
An article from the November 19, 1969 Grand Rapids (Michigan) Press describes how the Liggett and Myers Tobacco Company (L&M) tried to block the use of a death certificate as a foundation for medical testimony linking smoking to a fatal lung cancer in a deceased father of four. L&M was facing a $750,000 damage claim alleging that Mr. Leslie Thayer died from lung cancer caused by 30 years of smoking Chesterfield cigarettes, an L&M product. One of the Liggett attorney's arguments before the jury to exclude the death certificate information, before the judge quickly stopped him, was that "the industry supplies 314,000 jobs and contributes $4 billion annually to the economy."
- Trial testimony of GERALDINE THAYER, November 18, 1969, THAYER v. LIGGETT & MYERS TOBACCO CO., November 18, 1969
- Hank Bornheimer, Grand Rapids Press Tobacco Co. Overruled on Death Certificate Use Newspaper article. November 19, 1969. Tobacco Institute Bates No.TITX0013356
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