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January 12, 1984 - Image 3

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1984-01-12

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$10 million in damages
awarded in Silkwood case

The Michigan Daily -Thursday, January 12, 1984 - Page 3
ound dead in
possile suici de

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme
Court yesterday reinstated a $10 million
negligence award won by the three
children of the late Karen Silkwood,
whose name became a battle cry for
nuclear industry critics.
By a 5-4 vote, the nation's highest
court ruled that the huge "punitive
damages" award against Kerr-McGee
Corp. does not interfere with federal
regulation of the nuclear industry.
The decision, however, leaves Kerr-
McGee free to challenge, in whole or in
part, the award made by an Oklahoma
jury in 1979. The jury found that Kerr-
McGee's negligence led to Silkwood's
radioactive contamination.
"Wonderful news," said Silkwood's
mother, Merle Silkwood of Nederland,
Texas, who wept after learning of
yesterday's decision. "We've got
everything we wanted."
Bill Silkwood, Silkwood's father, said
1 he hoped the decision will have an im-
i pact on the nuclear industry.
"It sends a message to big companies

that they ought to look at how their
plants are run - like Karen was trying
to do here - to get better health and
safety measures," he said.
In Oklahoma City, family lawyer
James Ikard predicted that the legal
dispute could last up to three years
longer if Kerr-McGee decides to con-
tinue attacking the award. "We are
very happy. We just don't know how
happy," he said.
Speaking at a news conference
several hours after the high court's
decision was announced, Kerr-McGee
attorney Bill Paul said the company
"most assuredly will challenge" the
jury award.
Paul also said a federal appeals court
must still decide on radiation and
protection standards that would apply
to the entire industry.
If the award eventually is upheld it
will make millionaires of Silkwood's
three teen-aged children who live in
Ardmore, Okla., with their father,
William Meadows. The children are

Beverly, 17; Michael, 14; and Dawn, 13.
Meadows had been divorced from
Silkwood when she died in a 1974
automobile crash. He since has
Karen Silkwood, a 28-year-old
laboratory analyst at Kerr-McGee's
Cimarron plutonium plant near
Crescent, Okla., died Nov. 13, 1974,
while on her way to meet with a repor-
ter from The New York Times. Nine
days before, she had been radioactively
Silkwood, a union activist responsible
for monitoring health and safety mat-
ters at the Cimarron plant, reportedly
wanted to make public evidence of
missing plutonium and falsified safety
A movie about her, "Silkwood," was
released a month ago and has grossed
$10.8 million at the box office. Last
week, its $2.1 million in ticket sales
ranked it 7th in movie ticket receipts.
Silkwood's family sued in 1976,
alleging negligence by Kerr-McGee and

Silk w sood
... family wins suit

seeking damages for injuries Silkwood
suffered - primarily fear and anxiety
- during the nine days from her con-
tamination to her death.
A jury in Oklahoma said Kerr-McGee
should pay Silkwood's three children
$500,000 in actual damages and $10
million in punitive damages. The jury
also awarded $5,000 for Silkwood's con-
taminated belongings that had to be

A University student was found dead
in his home at 802 E. Kingsley Monday
morning, the apparent victim of a
Ann Arbor Police Sgt. Harold Tinsey
said 19-year-old Alan Keener, an LSA
sophomore from Royal Oak, Michigan,
died by hanging sometime over the
FRIENDS OF Keener said they were
surprised by his death.
"He's always been so happy," said

one student who asked not to be iden-
tified.The student added, however, that
Keener seemed withdrawn this year
and was outgrowing his
"I thought he was getting more
reserved," she said.
Keener's death marks the seocnd
suicide of this academic year and the
first suspected suicide of 1984. In 1983
two students killed themselves, one on
campus and the other off campus.
Keener had worked at the Michigan
Union ticket office.

Princeton University Prof. A. Walton Litz, author of "Introspective
Voyager: The Poetic Development of Wallace Stevens" and editor of
heretofore unpublished Ezra Pound letters, will continue the series of lec-
tures on "Ezra Pound Among the Poets" with a 4 p.m. lecture in Rackham's
East Conference Room.
AAFC - M; 7 p.m.; The Trial, 8:45 p.m., Aud. A. Angell.
CFT - The Tin Drum, 6:30 & 9:15 p.m.
Mediatrics - Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, 7 p.m.; Long Day's Journey into
Night,9 p.m., Nat. Sci.
Cinema Guild - The Yakuka, 7 p.m.; The Friends of Eddie Coyle, 9:10
p.m., Lorch.
Musical Society - Concert, Richard Stolzman, clarinet and William
Douglas, bassoon, 8:30 p.m., Rackham Aud.
Union Arts Festival - Music at Mid Day, Shari Lane plays finger Picking
Guitar, 12:15 p.m., Kuenzel Room, Union.
UAC - Soundstage Dance Band Bash featuring SLK and warm-up band
the Blue Rays, 8:30 p.m., Michigan Union Ballroom. Tickets $2.50.
emistry - L.S. Bartell, "Do the VSEPR Points-on-a-Sphere Repulsions
Simulate Quantum Interactions?"4 p.m., 1200 Chem.
Rackham, LSA, Western European Studies - Pauline Norton, "'Ex-
celsior".and Annabelle Lee': Dualism in Victorian Popular Music,"4 p.m.,
West Conf. Room, Rackham.
Museum of Anthropology - Henry Wright, "Madagascar as a Laboratory
in Cultural Adaptation: An Archeologist's Perspective," noon, 2009
Japanese Studies - Yoko Ichikawa, "Sentence Particles in Japanese
Conversation: What Are They Doing There?" noon, Lane Hall.
Computing Center - Forrest Hartman, "Introduction to Accounting
Management," 3:30 p.m., 165 Business Admin.; Bob Blue, "Introduction to
MTS: Basic MTS Commands," 7 p.m., 2235 Angell, Dave Hetrick, "Micro
Session 1: Command Language I," 7:30 p.m., 19 Angell.
Washtenaw Zenith Users Group, 6 p.m., 2903 Taubman.
Fencing Club -8 p.m., Coliseum.
Student Legal Services - Board of Directors, 7:30 p.m., 3000 Union.
Med. Center Bible Study -12:30 p.m., F2230 Mott.
Cooperative Outdoor Adventures -7:30 p.m., 1402 Mason.
Eating Disorders Self-Help Group - 7 p.m., First United Methodist, Huron
& State.
Undergraduate English Association - Social Committee, 5 p.m., 7th floor
lounge, Haven; Library Committee, 7 p.m., 7th floor lounge, Haven.
Scottish Country Dancers - Beginning Class, 7 p.m., Intermediate class, 8
p.m., 2531 Shadowood.
League - Egypt night, 5 p.m., cafeteria.
Museum of Art - Art Break, 12:10 p.m.
Women in Communications - wine social with professionals, 7 p.m.,
Kuenzel room, Union.
SAC - Resume Writing Workshop, noon, Alumni Center.
People for Jim Dunn - News Conference, Jim Dunn, 10 a.m., Pond Room,
To submit items for the Happenings Column, send, them in care of
f Happenings, The Michigan Daily, 420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Malicious Intent
+' l i 'I
( lit

Chrysler to file anti-trust suit against GM

WASHINGTON (UPI) - Chrysler Corp. will file
suit challenging the government's preliminary ap-
proval of a landmark deal for General Motors and
Toyota to jointly build a new line of subcompact cars,
a Chrysler source said yesterday.
The source said a formal announcement of the suit
will be made at a news conference today shortly-after
papers are filed with the U.S. District Court for the
District of Columbia.
"WE CONTEND (that the joint manufacturing)
would be a clear violation of antitrust statutes," said
the source, who asked not to be identified.
The Federal Trade Commission on Dec. 22, divided
over whether the deal would create a monopoly, gave

tentative approval for GM and Toyota to produce a
GM-designed car with a Toyota-designed engine.
GM, the world's largest automaker, and Toyota,
the world's third biggest, intend to begin production
later this year at a GM plant in Fremont, Calif.
provided the FTC grants final approval.
THE FTC has said it would issue a final ruling
following a 60-day period for public comment, which
is now scheduled to end next month.
In a petition filed with the FTC Monday, Chrysler
asked that it receive a full copy of a memorandum of
understanding signed by Toyota and GM and receive
a copy of the agency's staff analysis of the proposed
The auto giant asked in the petition that the 60-day

clock be restarted after it receives the material. The
FTC has not said if it will grant the request.
THE FTC GRANTED preliminary approval of the
joint venture last month after GM and Toyota signed
a consent agreement to limit production to 250,000
cars a year, restrict the venture to 12 years and limit
exchange of information.
If the deal goes through, it would mark the first
time that two major automakers jointly make a new
line of cars in the United States.
Chrysler Chairman Lee Iacocca last month blasted
the FTC for its GM-Toyota decision, saying the com-
mission "is letting the two strongest automotive
companies in the world monopolize the siall-car

State intervenes in college, worries 'U' officials

(Continued from Page 1)
would be considered unconstitutional
and would probably be challenged in
court, said University Regent Thomas
Roach (D-Saline).
Four year universities are
autonomous and should be protected
from such actions, said Roach. But
Root said community colleges are not
immune to state intervention under
THE UNIVERSITY is in the process

of filing a suit against the state
challenging the law which orders public
institutions to divest of their financial
holdings in firms operating in South
Africa. University attorneys say the
state has no authority to enforce the
Last April, the rights voted to divest
90 percent of the University's invest-
ments in South Africa.
This is theffirst timeinMichigan's 166
year history of-higher education that

the legislature has acted to take away
power from a college's board of
The state has been closely involved
with the affairs of the community
college since its creation, said Gary
Hawks, state director of higher
education management. It is
Michigan's only community college
that is not supported by a millage ap-
proved by area voters. Instead state
law requires an 11 percent tax on

Wayne county residents to fund the
college.tIn addition the school receives
almost twice as much in state aid than
any . other community college, Root
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