by John Darer® CLU ChFC MSSC RSP CLTC
There is no other name in the history of structured settlements that has been cited more times as a warning beacon to lawyers, in an effort to emphasize the need to seek structured settlement advisers, than Christina Grillo. Google "Christina Grillo Malpractice" and you get 55,000 results; " Christina Grillo Special Needs: 65,600 results; "Christina Grillo Structured Settlements" 1,910 results; Grillo v Pettiete" 442 results and " Grillo Waiver" 60 results.
Christina Marie Grillo Sullivan*, died September 17, 2014 at Cook Children's Hospital in Fort Worth, TX, aged 32. Christina's life deserves to be more than a punch line to a salesman's pitch. I just came across the lovely obituary that appeared in the Galveston Daily News October 30, 2014, which sheds some light on the extraordinary, beautiful and spiritual woman Christina Marie Grillo Sullivan was.
"Resuscitated back to life and left severely brain damaged, she was a fighter. With the love and support of 101 volunteers, family, friends, and her Nana and Nano, Christina began her journey in implementing a multi-year program that was developed by the Institutes for the Achievement of Human Potential called “patterning.” Her next journey was elementary, junior high and high school special education programs were she was blessed to have loving support from teachers and therapists and graduated in 2004.
Christina loved going to church, movies, singing, cooking, bowling, concerts, sporting events and so much more. She loved her family and being with them, traveling to many destinations seeing and touching people’s lives along the way. Christina’s last travels together as a family were to fulfill a promise that was made 32 years ago by her young mom praying to Our Blessed Mother to intercede to Her Son, Our Heavenly Father, to allow Christina to remain here on earth. In June of this year that promise to the Blessed Mother and Our Lord was kept. It was a spiritually healing one that has changed the family’s lives forever and strengthened their faith further. Our Blessed Mother, her spirit, lovingly took Christina home. Three days before Christina passed away her mom had dreamt of this kind, old woman that had come to up to her after the candle light vigil at the holy grounds of Our Lady of Lourdes in France, describing her as someone who looked like her little Nana. Her mom remembers this woman that had reached up and gently held her face and looked at her. No words spoken between the two, and Christina’s mom felt that the woman understood her pain for her child, and then she felt such a peace come over her. Not until her mom returned did she understand the meaning of that spiritual encounter. Three days before Christina was called home, the lady appeared to Christina’s mother in her dreams, and on the third day she realized the blessing that it was The Blessed Mother coming to take her angel home".
On the structured settlement front, on May 25, 1999, Christina and her mother appeared as witnesses in the build up to the Texas Structured Settlement Protection Act.
*Christina's last name reflects her Mom's April 8, 2000 marriage [ Source: Texas Marriage record index]