From Wood TV
October 17, 2018
KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — A couple from Allegan County hopes their experience with a rare and deadly mosquito-borne illness serves as a lesson for others.
Richard Force was rushed to the emergency room Aug. 30 after a few weeks of flu-like symptoms. It was another two weeks of testing, memory loss and partial paralysis before he was diagnosed with Eastern equine encephalitis.
“They started leaning towards the West Nile virus,” his wife Kelly Force explained to 24 Hour News 8 Wednesday. “So we kept thinking it’s the West Nile virus, we know where we’re going now. But it came back negative.”
Richard Force’s EEE diagnosis is the first confirmed case in Michigan since 2016. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the illness has a 33 percent fatality rate, making it one of the most dangerous illnesses that can be contracted via a mosquito bite.