Montana Hotel Staff Allegedly Ignored Calls, Resulting in Newlywed's Carbon Monoxide Death

Montana Hotel Staff Allegedly Ignored Calls, Resulting in Newlywed’s Carbon Monoxide Death

An Alabama widow is getting her justice more than three years after she filed a lawsuit alleging that her husband died from carbon monoxide poisoning while they were on their honeymoon, from which she died.

On Monday, Catharine Hudgens made an appearance in Gallatin County District Court, where jurors will determine if the husband’s 2021 death at Rainbow Ranch Lodge and the deaths of multiple plumbers should be the responsibility of the establishment.

Currently named as defendants in the wrongful death and negligence complaint are the Rainbow Ranch Lodge and a number of businesses and contractors who are purported to have worked on a propane-fueled boiler that released the lethal gas. In the case, Catharine Hudgens is suing for undisclosed damages.

On Saturday, January 9, 2021, Catharine and Lewis Hudgens got married in Florida. On Monday, January 11, they took a plane to Big Sky, Montana, for their honeymoon. Lewis Hudgens,59, was discovered dead inside his hotel room after less than a week of marriage.

A copy of the filed lawsuit states that the hotel had already bought and installed a new water boiler to heat an outdoor hot tub before the couple arrived at the Rainbow Ranch Lodge.

According to the lawsuit, the room where the new boiler was kept was right next to the room the couple was given for their honeymoon.

The legal team for Catharine Hudgens claims that the concrete wall dividing the married couple’s room from the boiler room has holes punched into it. According to the lawsuit, the Hudgens’ room was exposed to lethal levels of carbon monoxide from the boiler due to the holes.

According to the lawsuit, the boiler room’s exhaust fan “was not operational while the Hudgens stayed in the adjacent guest room,” supporting the allegation that the space was improperly ventilated.

Catharine Hudgens further claims that the hotel “failed to monitor carbon monoxide levels” in the boiler room, obliging them to be aware of the lethal gas being released.

Lewis Hudgens was killed by the deadly gas that is said to have entered the room, and Catharine Hudgens was left critically ill and confused.

The lawsuit claims that after checking into the posh hotel that Monday, the couple spent the whole evening in their room, ordering room service and watching the NCAA college football national championship game.

To make matters worse, the lawsuit claims that on January 13 and 14, Catharine Hudgens’ sister called the front desk of the Rainbow Lodge and asked that someone be sent to the newlyweds’ room to check on them.

But according to Catharine Hudgens, no staff member ever went to the room to see how her husband and she were doing.

The couple’s room was not finally opened by the hotel general manager on January 15 after numerous attempts to call and knock were met with no response.

The manager discovered Catharine Hudgens lying on the bed in a “severely disoriented” state after going into the room. According to the lawsuit, Lewis Hudgens was dead from carbon monoxide poisoning and was lying next to her.

“Had Rainbow Ranch staff checked on the Hudgens as requested, it is likely Lew (Hudgens) would be alive and Catharine (Hudgens) would not have been injured,” as per the document.

According to his obituary, Lewis Hudgens “passed away unexpectedly while honeymooning in Big Sky, Montana with his wife Catherine, whom he dearly loved.”
He was lovingly referred to as “Big Lew” by friends and family. His passing is noted as occurring on Thursday, January 14, 2021.
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With more than two years of expertise in news and analysis, Eileen Stewart is a seasoned reporter. Eileen is a respected voice in this field, well-known for her sharp reporting and insightful analysis. Her writing covers a wide range of subjects, from politics to culture and more.