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Fantasy Lake Water Park: Rare amoebae kill swimmers in the Hope Mills water park



HOPE MILLS, NC (WTVD) – A Guilford County man has died as a result of an amoeba that he sustained in a water park in North Carolina, according to the state Department of Health.

The victim is Eddie Gray, who fell ill after swimming on July 12 at Fantasy Lake Water Park in Cumberland County.

"I represent Mrs. Beverly Gray, the wife of the late Eddie Gray and his upcoming estate, Mr. Gray's death was tragic and outmoded." said Greensboro lawyer Justin Plummer. "The family is currently asking for privacy and respect in this difficult time."

Tests at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed that the person's disease was caused by Naegleria fowleri, an amoeba commonly found in warm fresh water.

"Our sympathy goes to the family and relatives," said state epidemiologist Zack Moore. "People should be aware that this organism is found in warm freshwater lakes, rivers and hot springs in North Carolina so be aware of swimming or enjoying." Water sports. "

Naegleria fowleri is not ill when swallowed, but it can be deadly if it is forced into the nose ̵

1; which can happen to people diving, water skiing or other water sports.
Eating amoebae usually infects humans, after being hot for a long time – leading to higher water temperatures and lower water levels.

SEE ALSO : Woman dies of brain-eating amoeba after using Neti p ot

The local health authorities work with the Fantasy Lake Water Park to protect the swimmers in the future.

Naegleria fowleri infected only 145 people in the US from 1962 to 2008. Five of these 145 were in North Carolina.

"Sometimes we spend all day, sometimes only one hour. But we are here a few times a week. It's not a problem, "said John Santoro, who likes to bring his family to the lake.

Santoro said he and his family are always cautious, but he will not allow anything so rare to ruin his family's fun.

If I was ill, I might think about it, or if my immune system was weakened. Or I had a big open cut, "said Santoro.

Santoro said the family have no intention of slowing down their season pass this summer.

SEE ALSO : Teen dies of a rare one brain-eating amoeba after attending the Whitewater Center in Charlotte.

Michael Lozano of ABC11 contributed to this report.

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