Appeal from order of Court of Common Pleas No. 5 of Philadelphia County, Sept. T., 1962, No. 45, in case of Esther Giordano v. Ralph J. Bianco, Inc. et al.
Alexander A. DiSanti, with him Richard, Brian & DiSanti, for appellant.
Raymond J. Porreca, for appellees.
Ervin, Wright, Woodside, Watkins, Montgomery, and Flood, JJ. (Rhodes, P. J., absent). Opinion by Watkins, J. Dissenting Opinion by Wright, J.
[ 204 Pa. Super. Page 220]
This is an appeal in a workmen's compensation case from the order of the Court of Common Pleas No. 5 of the County of Philadelphia, affirming the Workmen's Compensation Board's denial of benefits.
The claimant-appellant, Esther Giordano, is the widow of the deceased employee, Marino Giordano, who died on June 7, 1960, from a myocardial infarction. He was employed as a carpenter. The accident is alleged to have happened on June 1, 1960 in that he fell off a scaffold. No one saw the alleged accident. There was testimony by a man who lived across the street that he had abrasions on his nose and a scratch on his arm on the night of June 1; that he was working as a carpenter about one and one-half blocks from his home; there is no testimony that there were fellow workmen on the job; that he came home about one and one-half hours earlier than his usual quitting time; that the claimant and her daughter testified that he had a gash on his nose,
[ 204 Pa. Super. Page 221]
that he was holding his head and had a big scratch on his arm; that he looked very pale; and he said "he just fell off a scaffold at work"; that he went to lie down and didn't have supper that evening.
The decedent had a prior record of treatment for a heart condition. There was medical testimony that his death from a myocardial infarction was the result of the fall from the scaffold or that it contributed to the infarction.
The referee admitted the testimony of the claimant and her daughter as being a part of the res gestae and awarded benefits, making the following pertinent findings: "4. That on the aforesaid day while in the course of his employment with the defendant, claimant's decedent was struck by an overhead beam, causing him to fall from a scaffold, as a result of which he died of Myocardial infarction on June 7, 1960. 5. That the injury and fright attending the accident of June 1, 1960 when the decedent was struck by an overhead beam and thrown from a scaffold precipitated a heart attack which led directly to his death on June 7, 1960." And the following conclusion of law: "The Referee further concludes as a matter of law that the events described in Findings of Fact No. 4 constitute an accident within the provisions of the Pennsylvania Workmen's Compensation Act."
The board, on appeal, reversed the referee and substituted the following findings of fact: "Fourth: The decedent, Marino Giordano, died on June 7, 1960, as the result of a heart attack. Fifth: It was not established that the heart attack was the result of an accident in the course of the decedent's employment." And the following conclusion of ...