September 30, 2008 08:31:00 AM
Source of Article: http://www.newsherald.com/news/panama_68483___article.html/city_died.html
Bay County medical examiners say Steven M. Harrison, a
According to the Center for Disease Control, vibrio vulnificus is rare but most prominent in the
Harrison was unconscious in the back seat of a vehicle that led police on a Sept. 23 car chase that began in
Although the driver of the vehicle was arrested,
The Washington County Sheriff officials initially said the department was warned by medical officers that
Jaunice Harrison was awakened at her home in Summerfield about 3 a.m. by Florida Highway Patrol officials who told her that her husband, Steven, had died at
Chris Azar, the boyfriend of Harrison's 26 year-old daughter Stephanie, spoke on behalf of the family and said the family was not told about the chase but were told by hospital officials
"We were informed immediately the disease was non-communicable," Azar said. "You had this [flesh eating disease] story that had somehow become sensationalized, when Dad had just become deathly sick from bad oysters."
Azar said Harrison, a tile-worker who had run a successful business during the housing boom but had faltered during the recent slump, had been in
"He said he was being taken down in a wheelchair he was so sick," Azar said.
But Harrison never made it home, and the co-worker who was sent to drive him there currently sits in a
Azar said he doesn't doubt the driver of the vehicle had consumed alcohol, but he thinks deputies assumed
"I never saw him drink, ever," Azar said, citing
Azar said the family was told by deputies that
"What on Earth took them two hours to get him to the hospital?" Azar asked.
Azar said the financial and emotional strain the family has undergone is immense.
"The family is totally devastated," said Azar, who drove five hours to
Donations to the Harrison family can be made at http://proapp.net/steve