Grim Reality: First U.S. Ebola Patient Dies in Dallas

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DALLAS —  It’s the sort of grim reality the Dallas community didn’t want to see happen. Thomas Eric Duncan, the man who carried the first cast of Ebola to America, has died.

News of his passing came Wednesday morning in the form of a statement released by Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital.

“It is with profound sadness and heartfelt disappointment that we must inform you of the death of Thomas Eric Duncan this morning at 7:51am. Mr. Duncan succumbed to an insidious disease, Ebola. He fought courageously in this battle.”

Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings took time at Wednesday’s City Council meeting to express his condolences to Duncan’s family and give his personal feelings about the sudden passing.

“Yes, he was a visitor into our city. But he became part of our city. We were trying to lift him up,” said Mayor Rawlings.

Duncan, who was hooked up to ventilator and on dialysis, started getting experimental medicine over the weekend as his condition reportedly worsened, but the doses came a little too late.

The battle against this deadly disease doesn’t end with Duncan’s death. Officials are closely watching several others who came in contact with Duncan after he began showing symptoms, shortly after his arrival from Liberia in late September.

We are now nearing a critical point in their isolation when symptoms may appear. According to the CDC’s website, on average, symptoms could develop around 10 days after exposure.

While city and health officials nervously wait and see how things will play out, they reiterated the point that Ebola isn’t going to get a foothold here in North Texas.

For our sake, we hope they’re right.

 

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