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CHANTEL Giacalone, the model left paralyzed after consuming a peanut butter pretzel, has been awarded just under $30million in compensation by a Las Vegas Jury.
The 35-year-old is now under the constant care of her elderly parents following the tragic incident.
Chantel featured in a number of filmsCredit: Getty
Who is Chantel Giacalone?
Chantel Giacalone is a model and actress that has enjoyed cameo roles in a number of Hollywood films, including The Butterfly Effect 3: Revelations, Hollow Walls and Skylar.
Born in Michigan, USA, the actress was 27-years-old at the time of the tragedy and has been a quadriplegic ever since, losing the ability to move all four of her limbs.
She now communicates exclusively via her eyes and some limited facial expressions.
What happened to Chantel Giacalone?
Chantel had a severe peanut allergy, but while modelling at the MAGIC fashion trade show in Las Vegas in February 2013 she was offered a frozen yoghurt topped with a peanut butter-infused pretzel by her friend Tara Retes.
Tara was unaware of Chantel’s allergy, while Chantel was left clueless about the ingredients.
Despite spitting it out immediately, Chantel fell into an anaphylactic shock. The model suffered a severe allergic reaction and as a result went into cardiac arrest twice.
She was treated by the on-site medics of MedicWest, who put her into an ambulance without any epinephrine treatment supplied via IV – a costly mistake.
Chantel’s lawyer, Christian Morris, claims that she lost oxygen to her brain for a few minutes after being under the care of MedicWest medics.
During the final hearing on Thursday, April 8 2021, Christian argued that MedicWest were guilty of negligence as they failed to provide epinephrine through IV, a treatment required by law according to the Southern Nevada Health District.
MedicWest denied any wrongdoing, and even claimed that her condition didn’t warrant the use of IV epinephrine.
Chantel has been left paralyzed as a result of the incidentCredit: Nettles Morris Law Firm
What is Chantel Giacalone doing now?
The 35-year-old is now the subject of round the clock care from her elderly parents, with the bulk of her communication done via an eye-gaze computer.
Since the incident in 2013, Chantel has been living in the dining room of her parents’ house in Detroit.
A Las Vegas review-journal report stated that she also sings along to YouTube videos while completing dance exercises through facial expressions.
How much did Chantel Giacalone receive in compensation?
The civil trial lasted three-weeks before eventually the jury opted to award her family $29.5 million for damages, including medical expenses and emotional suffering.
Following the trial, Chantel’s 70-year-old father Jack Giacalone told the media: “At least my daughter will be taken care of. I’m happy about that.
“All the anguish that we’ve been through for the last eight years, I’m not happy about.”
Jack also confirmed that Chantel is now expected to live until age 55.