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Jury Compensates Man $3.35 Million for Injuries Suffered in Tractor-Trailer Accident

February 1, 2018

On December 12, 2010, then 56-year-old Everett Jerome Gardner was heading south on NC Highway 77 near Hamlet, North Carolina to visit his family for the Christmas holiday. What happened next would tragically change his life forever.

The driver of a tractor-trailer traveling in the opposite direction down the two-lane highway failed to pay attention to his driving and turned left across the center line, colliding head-on with Mr. Gardner’s much smaller Nissan Sentra. Mr. Gardner was air-lifted by helicopter to UNC Hospitals where he spent nearly two months. He was burdened with more than $200,000 in medical bills from his numerous surgeries, hospital stays, and rehabilitation care. He suffered almost a dozen broken bones and most of the use of his dominant left arm. Mr. Gardner had worked as a construction equipment operator since his 16th birthday, and as a result of his injuries from the collision will never again be able to work in the job he loved. Mr. Gardner’s mother and his two young sons were by his side throughout his hospitalization, and helped him through the everyday pain and sadness he suffered in the months and years after the wreck.

After the truck driver and his insurance company refused to settle the case and even denied all responsibility until the Thursday before trial, Mr. Gardner asked a jury to decide his future. A week-long trial resulted in a $3.35 million verdict against the truck driver and the trucking company responsible for the driver.

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“We would like to express our gratitude to you (Hunt Willis) for accepting our case. First of all, when I called this law firm, a very sweet and kind lady answered the telephone and gave me assurance by asking and going over the accident with me, while my husband was in the hospital. I felt assured I was doing the right thing for us. She was so helpful in so many ways. What a professional lady. Secondly, we are much pleased that you have settled this case with the insurance company to receive the proper amount to assist us in so many ways. My husband and I are very happy with you and the firm in handling our case. You made us have confidence in your professional and integrity along with your assistant Ms. Routh, when you both came to see us in our home, in which we saw your compassion and thoughtfulness at that time. We will never forget what you have done for us, and we thank the lord for directing me to contact this firm. I’m glad I did.” 

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