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PHILADELPHIA GEAR CORPORATION v. WORKMEN'S COMPENSATION APPEAL BOARD (TELL) (06/10/88)

decided: June 10, 1988.

PHILADELPHIA GEAR CORPORATION, PETITIONER
v.
WORKMEN'S COMPENSATION APPEAL BOARD (TELL), RESPONDENTS



Appeal from the Order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board in the case of Edward W. Tell, Deceased, Florence Ella Tell, Widow v. Philadelphia Gear Corporation, No. A-90650.

COUNSEL

Richard S. March, with him, Paul J. Senesky, Galfand, Berger, Senesky, Lurie & March, for petitioner.

John Gerard Devlin, for respondent.

Judges Craig and MacPhail, and Senior Judge Barbieri, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Senior Judge Barbieri.

Author: Barbieri

[ 117 Pa. Commw. Page 63]

Before the Court is the appeal of Philadelphia Gear Corporation, Employer, seeking review of an order of

[ 117 Pa. Commw. Page 64]

    the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board (Board) which affirmed a referee's award of benefits to Florence Ella Tell, widow of Edward W. Tell, deceased, Employee. We affirm.

Decedent, Edward W. Tell, was 49 years of age on October 2, 1981, when he suffered a fatal heart attack while at work on the premises of Employer. His employment as a magnaflux inspector covered the period from June of 1979 when a pre-employment physical examination by Employer revealed that he was suffering from hypertension. The referee made the following significant findings:

10. Claimant, Florence E. Tell, testified that prior to the fatal heart attack of decedent on October 2, 1981, decedent worked overtime on a continual basis, every day -- five days a week.

11. Decedent's overtime was confirmed by his supervisor, Ray Nall, who testified that decedent was working 'a little over 50 hours a week in September, 1981' and by the pay stubs issued to decedent by Philadelphia Gear Corporation.

Claimant, widow, testified to visible changes in decedent's appearance and behavior when he began work for Employer, compared with her observations as to his apparent "good frame of mind" and happy attitude in his prior employment. Defendant also exhibited signs of worry and tension which he attributed to job stress and harassment by his supervisor who worked for Employer. The referee specifically accepted the testimony of Claimant as "truthful, credible and persuasive." Finding of Fact No. 15. Susan Hartman, daughter of decedent, lived with him until shortly before he died and testified as to decedent's constant concern "about being laid off at Philadelphia Gear Corporation and was pressured about the overtime the decedent had been working at Philadelphia Gear Corporation." Finding of Fact No.

[ 117 Pa. Commw. Page 6517]

. Her testimony was also found by the referee to be "truthful, credible and persuasive." ...


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