SE Texas Man's Death Caused by Hantavirus

By  | 

HAMSHIRE, Texas (AP) - The death of a man this spring after being hospitalized with unbearable chest pains has been attributed to a deadly virus linked to rodents.

Allen "Joey" Bruce's family did not know the cause of his April death until earlier this week, when health officials told them Bruce, 29, had died of hantavirus, which is transmitted to humans when they inhale particles of dried urine, feces or saliva from an infected rodent.

His father told the Beaumont Enterprise that it gives them some closure to know what happened.

The city's health department spent Tuesday visiting the last place Bruce lived, his grandmother's rural home near Beaumont.

They also visited his former work site.

Hantavirus first appeared in Texas in 1993. Since then, there have been 34 cases, with 14 of those resulting in death.

That is according to a spokeswoman for the Texas Department of State Health Services.