Parents of Crushed Boy Get $2 Million Settlement

Posted By The Miami Herald | 12-Feb-1988

The parents of a 7-year-old South Dade boy, who was killed by toppling lumber at a Home Depot store last year, have settled their lawsuit against the store for $2 million, the family’s attorney said Thursday.

Elton Jerome Lee was crushed May 8 by sheets of three-quarter-inch-thick plywood that fell from a flatbed lumber cart inside the store, at 16051 S. Dixie Hwy.

“The store took the side railing off the cart so they could stock more lumber on it,” said Stephen Malove, the family’s attorney. “I hope Home Depot won’t modify their carts anymore.”

Charles Flick, the attorney representing the store, said Home Depot was not directly responsible for the accident. He refused to confirm the amount of the settlement.

“It was an amount that we felt was fair under the circumstances, “he said. “The Lee’s suffered a great loss, and we feel deeply for them.”

The boy was the oldest son of Elton and Barbara Lee. On the day he died, he was accompanying his grandfather, Thomas Lee, to buy lumber for a shed.
“He was standing right next to me,” the grandfather said after the accident. “He wasn’t doing anything... All of a sudden, it just fell.”

Customers helped Lee pull the stack of planks off his grandson. The boy was already dead.
Categories: In the News