FORT WORTH, Texas (WTVO) — The family of 10-year-old Lily Mae Avant says the little girl died Monday morning after contracting a brain-eating amoeba while swimming on Labor Day.
She contracted a deadly, brain eating amoeba that usually kills people within three to five days.
“She is just an outstanding young girl and we are all devastated but we’re also we’re also very hopeful,” said Chris Dowdy, Valley Mills Elementary Principal.
Doctors and members of the Center for Disease Control say they haven’t figured out where she contracted the amoeba, whether it was when she swam in the Brazos River near her house in Laguna Park, or at Lake Whitney on Labor Day.
“For this to happen to her when there were so many other people in the same waters on the same days we just don’t understand why it was her,” said her aunt, Crystal Warren.
Many people who get this dangerous parasite die within three-to-five days after starting to feel the effects.
The scientific name of the amoeba, Naegleria Fowleri.
It’s typically found in bodies of fresh water, like rivers, ponds and lakes.
A spokesman for the Texas Department of Health says the amoeba is present in fresh water all over the country.
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