Christopher Cox, 32, filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court against Kiawah Island Golf & Tennis Resort. Cox, who was 28 at the time of the accident, had gone to the resort with some friends to celebrate Cox’s graduation from Harvard University’s Business School, where he had just received his master’s degree in business administration. The group had gone for a vacation as they awaited their graduation ceremony, said attorney Stephen M. Smith of the Brain Injury Law Center.
During a bicycle ride on the beach on May 4, 1997, one of the rented bicycles that had been left at the beach house for their use collapsed and Cox was thrown over the handlebars, Smith said. He suffered a separated shoulder and a mild traumatic brain injury, Smith said.
“The resort did not maintain their fleet of bicycles and the rust buildup on the bike that Cox was riding caused the front fork, steering column and metal frame of the bike to suddenly snap and break off,” Smith said. “My client flew over the front of the bike and violently hit his head on the ground.”
Smith said that Cox was unable to attend his graduation, and the mild traumatic brain injury caused him to struggle as a stock and security analyst at a New York City firm. “In fact, he still has problems with concentration and suffers from memory loss and physical pain,” Smith said.
The negligence lawsuit, which was settled late Friday, also named as defendants CCA Industries, Inc.; Virginia Investment Trusts, Osprey Point Golf Co.; Cougar Point Golf Co.; Marsh Point Golf Co.; Turtle Point Golf Co.; Kiawah Tennis Club, Inc.; Kiawah Island Inn Co.; Kiawah Real Estate Co.; Night Heron Park Co.; West Beach Bike Shop; and Night Heron Bike Shop. The settlement of $1,750,000.00 is believed to be the largest of its kind in South Carolina for a mild traumatic brain injury case.