Asbestos disease claimed husband just months after marrying

The coroner’s court at Winchester

A DISTRAUGHT widow wept as she told a coroner how she and her husband had wed only months before his death and had “so many dreams” – but he passed away before they could achieve them.


Deborah Fry described husband Stephen as “just amazing, really kind and helpful”. She said: “He was always laughing and telling jokes. He would help anyone and he always looked after me.

“We had so many dreams and then this thing just came along and now I don’t have him.”

Stephen Fry (65), of Watership Place, Ringwood, died at home of the asbestos-related lung disease mesothelioma on 13th March.

An inquest at Winchester heard how he had been exposed to asbestos as an apprentice carpenter working for a building firm in London where he was born.

A post-mortem examination found Mr Fry had a massive tumour which “obliterated” most of his left lung.

In a statement made before his death, he said how one of his first jobs as a carpenter was to help fireproof doors in blocks of flats.

He said this was done by covering them with sheets of asbestos which he had to cut to size. Mr Fry said as he sawed the sheets “clouds” of dust would fill the room and he would be covered with it.

In February this year he had been rushed to hospital after collapsing and struggling to breathe.

Mr Fry was subsequently diagnosed with mesothelioma and died just over a month later.

The coroner concluded death was the result of industrial disease.