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Mac's wife files wrongful death suit

Actor Bernie Mac, seen here in this June, 27, 2007 file photo at the premier of the move Transformers, died Saturday morning in a Chicago area hospital of complications from pneumonia, according to his publicist, August 9, 2008. Mac was 50 years old. (UPI Photo/Jim Ruymen/Files)
Actor Bernie Mac, seen here in this June, 27, 2007 file photo at the premier of the move "Transformers", died Saturday morning in a Chicago area hospital of complications from pneumonia, according to his publicist, August 9, 2008. Mac was 50 years old. (UPI Photo/Jim Ruymen/Files) | License Photo

CHICAGO, Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Rhonda McCullough, Bernie Mac's wife, has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the late comedian's dermatologist, court records show.

Mac, whose acting credits include the movie "Ocean's 11" and TV's "Bernie Mac Show," died of complications from pneumonia Aug. 9, 2008. He was 50.

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In the lawsuit she filed last week in Cook County Circuit Court, McCullough alleges Rene M. Earles kept her husband at his clinic for nine hours July 17, 2008, instead of calling an ambulance to transport him to the hospital when he wasn't feeling well, the Chicago Sun-Times said.

McCullough claims Earles's failure "to recognize cardiopulmonary instability in Bernie" and "to recognize and act upon abnormal vital signs and signs of respiratory failure" set into motion a chain of events that led to Mac dying of pneumonia. McCullough is seeking at least $50,000 in damages.

However, Earles told the newspaper he talked to another of Mac's doctors as soon as he realized the star wasn't well, then sent him for additional treatment to a hospital by chauffeured car when the doctor told him Mac had pneumonia in both of his lungs.

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