Why did Geoff die? Widow seeks facts

A RAWMARSH woman is appealing for her late husband’s former work colleagues to help with an investigation in to his death.

Geoffrey Osborne died on August 1 last year aged just 58, after a battle with angiosarcoma of the liver, a rare form of cancer. Now his widow seeks to know why.

His type of cancer is linked to exposure to chemicals used when making PVC, and although angiosarcoma is not rare, it is seen mostly in people who work with PVC plastic – especially if they have been exposed to Vinyl Chloride Monomer (VCM), the basic raw material for the manufacture of PVC.

Industrial illness experts at law firm Irwin Mitchell believe it is possible Mr Osborne was exposed to VCM while working at Rotherham company William Heaton & Co Ltd, as a labourer from 1967-1968.

The firm is investigating conditions at William Heaton & Co Ltd on behalf of Mrs Janet Osborne, and needs former employees to help provide what could be vital information.

Mrs Osborne said: “We are absolutely devastated at Geoff’s death and miss him terribly. It’s devastating to think his death may have been caused by carrying out his daily duties at work.

“During his time at the company Geoff worked as a labourer on the construction of baths, and this included filling bath moulds and clearing up. It is likely that the baths were made from PVC, and it is possible that he was exposed to VCM.

“Nothing can be done to bring Geoff back, but we might be able to prevent others from suffering in the future. We want answers as to how and why he died.”

Anyone who can help should email denis.o’gorman@irwinmitchell.com or call 0870 1500 300.