A Cook County jury awarded $8 million to the family of a woman who was fatally struck three years ago while she was stopped on the side of I-294.

The verdict was handed down March 22 against Transfreight, Kiswani Trucking Inc., and the driver of the truck in the Feb. 15, 2010 accident that killed Stacey McHale, according to a press release from Corboy & Demetrio, the law firm that represented the McHale family.

McHale had pulled her car onto the shoulder near mile marker 9 on I-294 to investigate a flat tire when she was struck by a semi-truck and killed, the release said.

McHale, then 36, was the mother of two children who coached her daughter's soccer team and drove her son to hockey practice and games.

"This was an amazing mother of two amazing kids. She was the glue of the family and the jury saw what a profound loss her death has been," said Attorney Matthew T. Jenkins, one of the lawyers who represented McHale's husband in trial.

The husband, Steven McHale, now cares for couple's daughter, 12 and son, 16.

The jury held all three defendants named in the lawsuit liable.

"With the verdict, jurors rejected Transfreight's contention that while this was an accident, it wasn't the corporation's responsibility," Jenkins said.

The driver of the truck, Russell A. Kleppe, was also named in the suit.

The McHale family was not available today for comment.

dawilliams@tribune.com

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