By NewsDesk @infectiousdiseasenews
In a follow-up to a report last week, we are sad to report that 10-year-old Lily Mae Avant of Central Texas passed away overnight at Cook Children’s in Fort Worth.
The family reports “She fought the good fight” & touched so many lives.
Family member, Wendy Scott, wrote on the #Lilystrong Facebook page moments ago: Words can not begin to express how overwhelming this past week has been for our family. We have been flooded by your love and support and feel incredibly humbled by how many lives have been impacted by our sweet and sassy, Lily Mae.
Our beautiful girl is completely healed and in the arms of Jesus. Lily changed lives. Lily saved lives (in the physical and spiritual sense). She brought unity to a divided nation. Which, is just like her! She loved everyone she came in contact with, and we see you all felt that, via news reports or social media. She taught us so much more in her ten years than we ever taught her.
It is believed that Lily Mae contracted the “brain-eating amoeba”, Naegleria fowleri Labor Day weekend swimming in the Brazos River near the family’s Valley Mills home.
According to the CDC, Naegleria fowleri is a free-living microscopic ameba, (single-celled living organism). It can cause a rare and devastating infection of the brain called primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM).
The ameba is commonly found in warm freshwater (e.g. lakes, rivers, and hot springs) and soil. Naegleria fowleri usually infects people when contaminated water enters the body through the nose. Once the ameba enters the nose, it travels to the brain where it causes PAM, which is usually fatal. Infection typically occurs when people go swimming or diving in warm freshwater places, like lakes and rivers.
In very rare instances, Naegleria infections may also occur when contaminated water from other sources (such as inadequately chlorinated swimming pool water or heated and contaminated tap water) enters the nose. You cannot get infected from swallowing water contaminated with Naegleria.
Wendy goes on to say: The #Lilystrong page has become family. We know you all are grieving with us and want to support in any way you can. An account has been set up at First National Bank in Valley Mills, First National Bank in Whitney, and we have the option of Venmo: @LilyLaciJohn, for all donations to John and Laci.
Thank you, all, for being respectful of the family during this time as we grieve our loss. Please continue to stay united as a country and pray for Laci, John, and our family.
The staff at Outbreak News Today offer our prayers for the family.