Sunday, February 2, 2014

the last book I ever read (Sheri Fink's Five Days at Memorial, excerpt thirteen)

from Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-Ravaged Hospital by Sheri Fink:

In the days leading up to the anniversary, lawyers filed petitions in the names of the Memorial and LifeCare dead. Medical malpractice claims and personal-injury actions typically had to be made within a year of an incident. Just weeks after the disaster, eager attorneys had begun soliciting potential clients. Advertisements ran in newspapers, on television, and on billboards as far away as Houston and Atlanta. One lawyer had even ridden around New Orleans on her scooter planting campaign-style lawn signs on street medians and near hospitals. “I know black people—I was raised by black women,” the attorney, Tammie Holley, a white woman, wrote in an e-mail to colleagues. The families, she wrote, “would drive by the hospital to see ‘where mama died’ in search of answers.” She also obtained a mailing list of displaced voters from the NAACP. “The rest is history.” She wrote that a fellow attorney came into her office and said, “I can smell the money.”

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