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(Miss.App. 02/10/1998)

February 10, 1998

(Miss.App. 02/10/1998)


DATE OF JUDGMENT: 08/23/95 TRIAL JUDGE: HON. ISADORE W. PATRICK JR. COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: WARREN COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT

TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: REMANDED TO COMMISSION FOR DETERMINATION OF AMOUNT OF DISABILTITY

Before Bridges, C.j., Payne, And Southwick, JJ.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Bridges, C.j., For The Court

THIS OPINION IS NOT DESIGNATED FOR PUBLICATION AND MAY NOT BE CITED, PURSUANT TO M.R.A.P. 35-B

NATURE OF THE CASE: CIVIL - WORKER'S COMPENSATION

Lonnie Gentry was injured on the job on March 3, 1993. Subsequently, the administrative law Judge found that Gentry had not proven a permanent occupational disability as a result of the work injury. The Mississippi Workers' Compensations Commission affirmed the order of the administrative law Judge. On appeal, the Circuit Court of Warren County reversed the decision and remanded the case back to the Commission to determine the amount of occupational disability resulting from the 1993 injury to Gentry. From this decision , Moss Construction appeals to this Court.

On appeal, Moss raises the following:

1. Whether the decision of the Mississippi Workers' Compensation Commission is supported by substantial evidence.

Finding no error, this Court affirms the decision of the circuit court.

FACTS

From May 13, 1987, until April 19, 1994, Gentry worked constructing metal buildings and doing the metal frame work for big buildings for Moss Construction.

In 1980 Gentry had back surgery (L5-S1 fusion) by Dr. William Stewart to correct a back problem Gentry had apparently had since birth. At the time of the surgery, he was employed by Fordice Construction, also working with a crew assembling metal buildings. Gentry's supervisors at Fordice Construction were Johnny and Bob Moss, who later bought this part of the Fordice business. Following surgery, Gentry did not immediately return to work for the Moss brothers, but did return in 1983 or 1984 and stayed for about two years. After a dispute with his brother, who was also his foreman, Gentry left and worked at various jobs before returning in 1987. Gentry testified that he did not have any other job injuries except "maybe a pulled muscle" which caused him to miss work.

On March 3, 1993, Gentry and another Moss Construction employee were bolting rafters at a site in Port Gibson. After the bolts were inserted in a particular rafter, Gentry felt pain in his back. Gentry initially thought he had a pulled muscle and did not seek immediate medical attention. He did report the injury to the job foreman, his brother, Rector Gentry. Gentry stayed away from work for several days because of the injury.

Gentry initially sought medical treatment on March 15, 1993, at the Street Clinic in Vicksburg, where he was treated by Dr. David Thompson. Dr. Thompson treated Gentry conservatively for a lumbar strain and on June 8, 1993, Gentry was released to return to light duty work. After Dr. Thompson left the state, Dr. Wallace Weatherly undertook to treat Gentry. Gentry was discharged to return to work on October 14, 1993. Gentry returned to work at that time, but could only work about three ...


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