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Entrepreneur Daikin’s widower speaks out for the first time since his death

LAWRENCE COUNTY, Alabama – Heartbroken Bobby Humphrey broke his silence for the first time since the death of his wife, Darby Dockery, in September.

The couple spoke to News 19 just a month before his death, expressing serious concerns and allegations against Decatur’s Daikin America plant. Dockery said she was exposed to dangerous chemicals while working as a subcontractor at the plant in October 2019.

Following this exposure, Dockery spent months in UAB’s intensive care unit. She would later depend on an oxygen tank and a concentrator to keep her alive.

But having severe lung damage and experiencing a pandemic caused by respiratory illness quickly took its toll.

Dockery’s death certificate says respiratory distress syndrome from COVID-19 is the cause of his death. Something her husband thinks she could have beaten without the Daikin exhibit.

“The cause of death, they said, was COVID pneumonia, but COVID pneumonia would not have killed it,” he said. “His age was in his favor and his health would have been his health. “

Humphrey tells News 19 that his wife’s spirit has given him the strength to move forward in her honor, but it hasn’t been an easy process.

“I’m angry, I would kinda like them to shut this place down,” he said. “People are dying and they don’t care. They don’t care about families.

Humphrey, once labeled a caregiver for his wife, stood alone on a road in Lawrence County, now a single father of three.

“It’s weird, it’s hard to look at pictures of her because it confuses us.”

Humphrey says his wife died spitting out Daikin.

“You go from good health to bad health, you are going to go crazy,” he said. “Then to make companies laugh or try to help or nothing, really hide it. She was hot. She was crazy.

Now he’s gone to continue raising their three daughters. Three girls who won’t see their mom at Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday.

“It’s going to get more difficult as Christmas approaches… I miss her.”

Humphrey ultimately blames Daikin for the untimely death of his 37-year-old wife. A claim he hopes to prove in court.

“They have ruined our lives, they have ruined the lives of my children, my life, the life of his family,” he said. “They have to speak up and do what’s right for these families, everyone.”

He says the company has not contacted him since the Dockery chemical exposure in 2019. Even after filing a complaint against the company in 2020.

News 19 reached out to Daikin for comment on Tuesday. The company told us it is not commenting on pending litigation.

Humphrey said the lawsuit on his wife’s behalf would be amended with a wrongful death claim.


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