Zelda Rothman started experiencing heightened symptoms of her lung cancer in late October 2015. Her breathing became increasingly labored, she began to have excruciating headaches and, by the end of December, she required supplemental oxygen on a 24-hour basis.
She died on Jan. 25 — a death which her kids believe was hastened by the Aliso Canyon gas leak near her home in Porter Ranch.
That's according to a wrongful death lawsuit brought against SoCal Gas and its parent company Sempra Energy on Tuesday. Rothman was diagnosed with lung cancer in spring 2015, according to the complaint, with the suit claiming the gas leak caused her health to deteriorate.
“Zelda had lung cancer and was in a fragile state, and essentially the gas company poisoned her,” Scott Glovsky, an attorney representing the Rothman family, said.
Glovsky said they are not claiming the gas leak caused her cancer, but that the gas company hastened her death and destroyed her quality of life.
“On Zelda’s deathbed, when she was surrounded by her family and loved ones, she implored them to pursue this case, to protect the public and warn other people,” Glovsky said.
Rothman, who died at 79 years old, is survived by her son and daughter, who are seeking damages for their mother's alleged wrongful death.
In addition to the wrongful death lawsuit, SoCal Gas is already facing both civil and criminal suits over the Porter Ranch gas leak.
Read the entire complaint brought against SoCal Gas here: