Runaway cart victim suing Cowboys Stadium
Willie Amendola, the Spring Dekaney High School football coach, had the bad luck of seeing his December 2011 confrontation with a runaway golf cart turned into a viral video.
Now Amendola and his wife, Valerie, are suing Cowboys Stadium for $1 million in a lawsuit filed Tuesday.
Although Amendola, the father of New England Patriots receiver Danny Amendola, appeared unhurt other than a cut on his arm, the lawsuit claims he suffered "great personal embarrassment and mental anguish " as reported in Courthouse News and The Dallas Morning News.
Amendola was conducting a postgame interview with reporters when he was struck from behind by the unmanned cart, which a worker had left running while pickup up pylons around the field.
The coach was thrown into the cart, but was in such an awkward position he could not stop it and eventually rolled off onto the turf.
Here's how the lawsuit describes the scene:
"Struck from behind, without warning, Coach Amendola was thrown back into the floorboard of the cart, suffering serious bodily injuries. Coach Amendola heroically had the presence of mind to direct the cart, which he briefly controlled, in such a manner that it avoided striking the head or bodies of numerous others who had fallen. He rolled off the cart when he realized he could not bring it safely to a halt, hitting the stadium floor."
The lawsuit blames the accident on "ill-trained, unsupervised and grossly negligent employees."
Cowboys Stadium spokesman Brett Daniels declined to comment on the lawsuit when contacted by The Morning News.
However, the root of the complaint seems to be that video of the "ghost cart" knocking down unsuspecting people like bowling pins became an internet sensation.
"Videos of the incident were distributed by media sources on International, National, State and Local television and internet news sites, causing Coach Amendola and his wife great personal embarrassment and mental anguish, in addition to his considerable physical injuries."
Follow Keith Whitmire on Twitter: @Keith_Whitmire