Home / Health / Florida woman says her father died after contracting a flesh-eating bacteria on a beach

Florida woman says her father died after contracting a flesh-eating bacteria on a beach

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) – A Florida Panhandle woman said her father died after contracting a flesh-eating bacteria while swimming in the Gulf of Mexico at Destin.

In a Facebook message that has received more than 19,000 shares on Facebook since it was shared Wednesday, Cheryl Bennett Wiygul, a resident of Niceville, explained how her father contracted the bacteria.

She said her father, Dave Bennett, was visiting him with his mother.

"My parents were staying with me in Florida about a week after the message, a 12-year-old girl contracted a bacterium that turned into necrotizing fasciitis (flesh-eating bacteria) in Destin started to turn around. did not want to believe that, "wrote Bennett Wiygul. "My family loves being in the water." Our county, Okaloosa County, has published an article titled "Controlling Rumors" in response to the article that seemed to dispel everyone's fears. . "

Still, Bennett Wiygul was cautious, noting that the 12-year-old girl who contracted the bacteria had a cut in her leg. So she did some research and was "fanatical" for the use of adequate protection.

"My father had no open wounds.He had some places where the practical appearance cured small scratches on the arms and legs that I assured myself to be perfectly sealed", explained Bennett Wiygul. "My mother religiously blocked it by the sun, we took precautions and we were good, so I thought."

She recounted that the family had fun and visited Destin Beach twice, played at Turkey Creek, swam at Boggy Bayou and spent a day at Rocky Bayou on jet skis and throwing a ball in the water. 39; water. Twelve hours later, Dave Bennett woke up with fever, chills and cramps.

"My parents had planned to come back to Memphis that morning, and my mother wanted him to check with his doctor, he had been sick and knew his story so it seemed like the best thing to do, "Bennett Wiygul wrote.

But things got complicated on the way back and the pain in her legs became severe. Because he was suffering from cancer, the family took no chances and quickly drove him to the hospital. When they examined it, they found on its back a black and swollen patch that did not exist before.

"My mother sent me a photo of her and I felt that someone punched me," wrote Bennett Wiygul. . "… I've never seen a cut on her back and she either, we certainly had not seen this place.I told him to tell them that he was in the ###. 39 Florida water and that it was a necrotizing fasciitis. "

However, Bennett Wiygul's mother was met with skepticism.

"Someone told him that the media had exaggerated it," said Bennett Wiygul. "Others said it was a staph, they would not, they started taking intravenous antibiotics."

But she says the black spot has doubled in size and another one has started to appear as her father's pain has intensified. At 1 pm, his father was septic and was transferred to the intensive care unit. He once went on cardiopulmonary arrest and was resuscitated before going on cardiopulmonary arrest again. At that time, the medical staff stated that his organs were too damaged and his blood was too acidic.

"He was gone on Sunday afternoon – less than 48 hours after getting out of the water in great shape, the bacteria had destroyed it," wrote Bennett Wiygul.

The laboratory results confirmed what Bennett Wiygul had always suspected: Vibro vulnificus, which manifests as necrotizing fasciitis, or flesh-eating bacteria.

"There was no warning about the bacteria on the beaches and the parks we went to," said Bennett Wiygul. "They publish notices about the high number of bacteria, but there have not been any."

That's why she used social media to share her story with the public. Although she knows that you should not swim with an open sore, she did not realize that people whose immune system is compromised should also stay out of the water. If there had been a sign, she said that she would not have let her father go into the water.

"I absolutely do not try to scare people out of the beach or swim in. I love water and my dad too," wrote Bennett Wiygul. "People need to know how to be more cautious and recognize the symptoms, there is information but I have not found all that before it's too late, I do not want to that it happens to anyone. "

The family plans a celebration of life for their father on July 20th.

According to


Those most at risk for Vibro vulnificus are those with diabetes, kidney disease, cirrhosis of the liver, breast cancer and anyone with compromised immune systems. The CDC also asserts that eating raw seafood, especially oysters, and exposing open wounds to salt water or brackish water can also increase the risk of vibriosis.

For more on what the CDC recommends,

click here


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