Woman dies within days of being bitten by ticks

After a rare tick borne virus killed a grandmother who worked at Meramec State Park - rangers are collecting thousands of ticks for testing.

SULLIVAN, MO. - After a rare, tick-borne virus killed a grandmother who worked at Meramec State Park, rangers are collecting thousands of ticks for testing. 

Tamela Wilson, 58, was hospitalized after she was bit twice by a tick on the hip at Meramec State park in Sullivan last month. She had been fighting cancer for two years, but after the tick bites, her family says a rare virus claimed her life within days.

The CDC confirmed she contracted the Bourbon Virus.

Park visitor Charles Schatz says he saw a CDC crew at the park. He's so concerned about the virus that he kept the tick he found on himself for research, in case he got sick.

The CDC says the results from the tick testing won't be available for several months.

They're encouraging park goers to wear long sleeves, avoid high grass and use insect repellent.

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© 2017 KSDK-TV


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