Boy Dies from Rare Meningitis Contracted in Lake LBJ

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

AUSTIN (AP) - A 12-year-old Travis County boy has died after contracting a rare and unusually fatal form of meningitis.

Health officials say John Patrick "Jack" Herrera became sick last week after swimming in Lake LBJ while at summer camp.

He died Wednesday at Dell Children's Medical Center in Austin.

Doctors said the boy had primary amebic meningoencephalitis, a severe brain infection.

Department of State Health Services spokeswoman Emily Palmer says all 34 cases of the infection reported in Texas since 1972 have been fatal.

Jack's family issued a statement saying that his organs were being donated "so that other children may live and overcome their terrible afflictions."

The amoebas responsible for the illness live in soil and in all bodies of fresh water.

They thrive in warm and stagnant water.

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