BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) – A settlement has been reached in the wrongful-death lawsuit filed against a western New York amusement park by the family of a double amputee Iraq veteran killed when he fell out of a roller coaster.
The Buffalo News reported Tuesday that the settlement reached by lawyers for Darien Lake Theme Park and Resort and James Hackemer’s family was for a seven-figure amount. David Brock, an attorney with the Buffalo law firm representing the park, said he couldn’t comment on the amount because the settlement called for keeping the figure confidential.
Brock confirmed that Hackemer’s two young daughters, ages 3 and 4 at the time of the July 2011 accident, are the beneficiaries of the settlement
“Everyone is kind of happy to have this behind us,” Brock told The Associated Press on Tuesday. “Everyone is able to kind of move on.”
Denis Bastible, a lawyer with the Buffalo firm that represented Hackemer’s family, also said he couldn’t comment on the amount of the settlement, which was approved by a U.S. District Court judge last Wednesday.
“It’s going to secure the future of these two girls, who are 4 and 6, throughout their life,” Bastible said.
Hackemer was an Army sergeant when he lost both legs to a roadside bomb in Iraq in 2008.
On July 8, 2011, the 29-year-old was at Darien Lake in Genesee County with his family when he fell out of a car on the Ride of Steel coaster, landing on the ground about 150 feet below.
Hackemer wasn’t wearing his prosthetic legs when he got onto the ride. Investigators said he came out of his seat and its restraints on the last and second-highest of three hills on the coaster, which reaches speeds in excess of 70 mph and whose highest peak is 208 feet. The veteran struck the front of the eight-car train and fell about 150 feet, landing on a grassy area.
State officials determined operator error was to blame for the accident. Investigators said park workers didn’t follow rules posted at the ride’s entrance, which require that riders have both legs.
Information from: The Buffalo News,
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
- The best places to celebrate Fall in Phoenix
- Infamous athletes who did the most time for their crimes
- 2016 baseball highlights, bloopers and blunders
- See how CFOs really feel about business in the Valley
- The best television shows on the internet
- A preseason guide to avoid holiday weight gain
- The 5 worst things you could do for your roof
- 6 coolest things brewing in Arizona
- The virus that keeps head and neck cancers on the rise
- State Fair ‘Kid Reporter’ has all the angles covered
- 4 important things to know about timeshare maintenance fees
- Signs of delayed car crash injuries
- The truth about sports concussions
- The Alzheimer's epidemic: Facts you need to know
- The season is here, keep your Fantasy Football team strong all season
- 8 TV shows you can't miss this fall
- Football is here: 6 tips to make this your best season ever
- Gameday recipes and beers to match
- 6 reasons the Cardinals are driven to win the Super Bowl
- The Pac-12 football season nears kickoff
- Tips to get ready for a pain-free golf season
- Protect your family with these 7 home security features
- How to train like an Olympic swimmer
- 2016 Olympics: A guide to must-see TV events
- The bride's guide to feeling your best on your wedding day
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier