A woman from Texas decided to go out with some friends for some fun in Louisiana, but when she returned home, things took a terrible turn when her flesh began to rot. In fact, after 21 days of fighting for her life, she would lose the battle and die an untimely death all from eating a common food many people love, and now, her family is trying to spread a warning so no one else makes the same mistake.
In September, Jeanette LeBlanc went crabbing with some friends and family on the Louisiana coast. Unfortunately, this one day of fun would turn into something she would undoubtedly regret. In a matter of hours, her health began to take a turn as her flesh shockingly began to rot, and 21 days later, she would die because of a common food many people enjoy.
Jeanette’s friend Vicki Berquist can’t believe what happened and is now dedicating her time to warn others, hoping to keep them from making the same mistake. She explains that everything began while they were crabbing in Louisiana. It was then that Jeanette and her friend Karen Bowers shucked and ate about two dozen raw oysters.
“About 36 hours later, she started having extreme respiratory distress, had a rash on her legs, and everything,” Bergquist recalled, according to KLFY. “An allergic reaction of sorts, that’s what I would call it. That’s what we thought,” she added, but as time would tell, it wasn’t an allergic reaction at all.
Unfortunately, Jeanette’s condition went from bad to worse in the first 48 hours, and doctors told her that she had a life-threatening condition known as vibrio. “It’s a flesh-eating bacteria. She had severe wounds on her legs from that bacteria,” Berquist explained.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, people can get sick with vibriosis after eating raw or undercooked shellfish or by exposing open wounds to brackish water, Fox News reports. Unfortunately, Jeanette had been in contact with both, and for the next 21 days, she fought for her life and eventually died.
“She was bigger than life,” Bergquist said of her friend. “She was a great person, laughed a lot, loved her family, loved her dad.” Berquist and Bowers are now trying to raise awareness about vibrio so something like this will never happen to anyone else.
“If they really knew what could happen to them and [that] they could literally die within 48, 36 hours of eating raw oysters, is it really worth it?” Bowers asked rhetorically.
“I can’t even imagine going through that for 21 days, much less a day. Most people don’t last.” Bergquist added. “If we had known that the risk was so high, I think she would’ve stopped eating oysters.”
I think Bergquist couldn’t be more right. In fact, many social media users couldn’t believe what had happened and are spreading the sad news to friends and family. “How terrifying!” one social media user stated, while another added, “Cook. Your. Food,” and yet another insisted that this is a real problem by stating, “My Husband also got this from raw oysters in Louisiana.”
Texas resident contracts flesh-eating bacteria from oysters in Louisiana — http://bit.ly/2ArPlV8 #RegionalNews
It’s sad that anyone would have to die in this manner. Jeanette LeBlanc was simply trying to have some fun with friends and eventually lost her life because of it. She must have been terrified to learn that her one mistake could kill her – and ultimately, it did.
Unfortunately, the only way we can prevent something like this from happening to ourselves or someone we love is to spread awareness. The more people who know and understand the risks, the less likely it is that they will choose to take a chance by eating some raw oysters. Sharing this article may be the only thing stopping someone you know from making Jeanette’s same avoidable mistake.