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Lancaster Man, 84, Fights For Life After Contracting West Nile Virus

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LANCASTER (CBSLA.com) — A Lancaster man fights for life Wednesday after contracting the West Nile virus, according to his daughter.

James Brockway, 84, was bitten by a mosquito back on July 28th.

Twelve days later, the active veteran who loves to fish, camp and volunteer with the Sheriff’s Department, became extremely ill.

CBS2 and KCAL9 reporter Amanda Burden spoke to Brockway’s daughter — Gayle Failla — about her father’s ordeal.

“I just almost lost my dad to a simple little bug.”

That simple little bug is becoming an epidemic around the country — the largest outbreak ever seen in the United States.

Brockway deteriorated quickly. He developed a rash and a fever and lost control of his legs. “It was kinda shocking He wasn’t alert any more, he couldn’t move. He was was very confused. If you touched him, he would tremor.”

Failla says her dad is now on the mend and each day is feeling better and moving more. She believes he will bounce back from this close call.

Burden also spoke to Anne Peterson, Infection Prevention Coordinator for Antelope Valley Hospital. She says the symptoms to look for include “major achy joints, fever, nausea and vomiting.”

To avoid getting sick, try to avoid mosquitoes says Burden. Use bug repellant, wear long sleeves and pants and avoid places where the bugs congregate, in standing water.

Failla will stay by her dad’s side while he heals. “I will take my dad any way, shape or form. He’s got his mind back. He’s my best friend.”

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