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LEWIS v. AMERICAN AIRLINES

March 20, 1950

LEWIS et al.
v.
AMERICAN AIRLINES, Inc.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: CONGER

Motion by defendant to transfer this action from the Southern District of New York to the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division, for the convenience of parties and witnesses, pursuant to Section 1404(a) of the New Judicial Code, 28 U.S.C.A.

This is an action brought by Anna H. Lewis for herself and for her infant son to recover damages because of the death of David N. Lewis (husband of Anna H. Lewis and father of the infant).

 David N. Lewis was killed when an airplane, owned by defendant, crashed and burned while landing at Love Field, Dallas, Texas, on November 29, 1949.

 The complaint charges that the crash of the airplane and the death of David N. Lewis was caused by the negligence, carelessness and recklessness of the defendant, its agents and servants.

 Issue has as yet not been joined.

 The decedent purchased his ticket at Washington, D.C. for a round trip from Washington to Dallas.

 Defendant operates air carrier services throughout the United States and maintains bases throughout the United States including Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Dallas, Fort Worth and Los Angeles.

 Defendant is a Delaware corporation in which State it maintains its corporate offices. Its general offices are in the City of New York.

 The plaintiffs are citizens and residents of the State of New York where they have their domiciles.

 Defendant contends that decedent and plaintiffs were residents of the District of Columbia prior to and at the time of the accident, but that since the accident plaintiffs moved to the City of New York, where they live in a hotel.

 Mrs. Lewis contends that both she and her husband had all their lives been residents of the State of New York and domiciled there; that the Washington address, a one-room apartment in an apartment house, was only a temporary arrangement, while her husband was in the Government service. This contention is borne out by Mrs. Lewis' affidavits and documents attached thereto.

 Mr. Lewis was a lawyer. He was admitted to the Bar in New York State. From 1932 to 1940 he practiced law in Suffolk County, New York, when he went into the army. He was separated from the army in January, 1946. He then started to practice law with his father in Suffolk County. In October, 1947 Mr. Lewis was sent abroad by the Alien Property Custodian's office of the Department of Justice. He returned in May, 1949 with his wife who had joined him in Europe. On June 16, 1949 they obtained this apartment in Washington in which they lived on a temporary basis, as claimed by Mrs. Lewis, until her husband's death.

 Mrs. Lewis asserts that she and her husband lived in Long Island in rented quarters from 1932 to 1937; that in 1937 they purchased a home at Brightwaters, Long Island, in which they lived until February, 1946, when they purchased another home at Bay Shore, Long Island; that this was their permanent home and residence and that it is still owned by Mrs. Lewis.

 Documents attached to the opposing affidavits show that Mr. and Mrs. Lewis were in 1949 registered voters in Suffolk County and that Mr. Lewis voted there at the general election on November 8, 1949; that the last will and testament of decedent, as a resident of Suffolk County, was admitted to probate in Suffolk County; that they were members of Temple Sinai in Bay Shore and paid dues for the year 1950; that their bank account was with a bank in Bay Shore; that their automobile insurance gives their ...


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