Woman has reaction to COVID-19 vaccine in waiting area, dies in hospital


Tim Hrenchir

The Topeka Capital-Journal, Kan.

Apr. 14—Family members of an Effingham woman who suffered a seizure and died last month after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine have hired an attorney to look into whether they have a viable case for a wrongful death lawsuit.

Jeanie Marie Myer Evans. Courtesy photo

Jeanie Marie Myer Evans, 68, died unexpectedly March 24 at Topeka’s Stormont Vail Health Center, according to an obituary published on the website of Atchison’s Becker-Dyer-Stanton Funeral Home. Evan’s hometown, Effingham, is about 35 miles northeast of Topeka in Atchison County.

One of Evans’ sons, Colt Umphenour, told The Topeka Capital-Journal on Friday that the family had retained the services of attorney Lynn Johnson of the Kansas City, Mo.-based law firm Shamberg, Johnson and Bergman. Johnson confirmed later that day he had been hired.

In a statement that didn’t identify Evans by name, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment announced March 25 it was initiating an investigation into her death.

The KDHE statement said a woman began experiencing “anaphylaxis,” which is an allergic reaction, during the waiting period after the vaccine was administered to her in Jefferson County.

The woman was provided medical treatment at the scene, then taken to a Topeka hospital, where she died, said KDHE spokeswoman Kristi Zears.

Stormont Vail spokesman Matt Lara confirmed March 25 that an individual had died Wednesday after receiving the COVID vaccine in the region.

A review of available information reveals no evidence that the COVID-19 vaccination has contributed to any patient deaths nationwide, although 3,005 people have died after receiving the vaccine, according to the website of the Centers for Disease Control.

Evans served on the Effingham City Council and was a clerk for Main Street Food & Fuel in that city, according to her obituary. She is survived by five children, 15 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

The website for Shamberg, Johnson and Bergman says it won a $23.5 million verdict in 2008 following a lengthy jury trial in federal court in Wichita against Phoenix-based Swift Transportation.

The verdict was linked to a 2006 traffic crash in New Mexico involving a truck driver who was under the influence of methamphetamine. The amount awarded ended up being $15.275 million because Swift Transportation was found to be 65% at fault.

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