May 22, 2022

Holiday tragedy

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British tourist, 54, dies on her birthday after contracting deadly blood infection on dream Caribbean holiday with her husband

By Abe Hawken From The Sun UK

Peter and Lynne Crouch celebrated Christmas in the Domican Republic

Lynne Crouch, 54, from Essex, contracted a rare blood infection while on a dream Christmas holiday

A BRITISH tourist died on her birthday after she contracted a deadly blood infection in the Caribbean.

Lynne Crouch, 54, woke up on Christmas Eve feeling nauseous and dizzy in her hotel room in the Dominican Republic.

She was “perfect” when she went to bed the previous night after spending the evening at the hotel bar with her husband Peter, 63.

But the following morning she was unable to stand and when she tried to go for lunch, she vomited and collapsed.

Mr Crouch, from Loughton in Essex, said: “It all happened so fast – one minute we were standing at the bar and the next morning Lynne couldn’t get out of bed.

“I was feeling 100 per cent but she became so ill so quickly – why did this happened to her and not me?

“She managed to get up at lunchtime but she collapsed at the bottom of the stairs and when I put her back into bed, she had no recollection of it.”

Lynne Crouch’s hands were covered in purple blotches while she lay in hospital in the Domican Republic

Mrs Crouch was diagnosed with meningococcemia, which is a rare bacterial blood infection of the same type that causes meningitis and died less than a week later.

She passed away in quarantine at 5pm on Sunday after almost a week battling the infection.

Speaking from the Caribbean island, Mr Crouch added: “It’s just so confusing to think she is not with me anymore.

“I still have her suitcase and all her things with me. I think it will hit me when I finally get home and realise she is not there anymore.

“Our Lynne was the most beautiful, amazing and caring person.

“She brought life, light and sunshine into the lives of everybody who had the honour of meeting her.

“She has cared for people all her life and we have lost somebody who is truly irreplaceable. She will be beyond missed and our lives will never be the same.”

Mrs Crouch was initially taken to Punta Cana Medical Center and diagnosed with entamoeba histolytica – a virus that infects 50 million people worldwide each year, killing around 55,000.

When she was transferred to a larger hospital in the capital city of Santo Domingo, doctors changed her diagnosis to meningococcemia.

Writing in his diary at her bedside the day before her death, Mr Crouch said: “Lynne does not know who I am and says she can’t see – only bright lights.

“Her head drops and becomes limp and the vomiting and diarrhoea is constant.

“Lynne becomes covered in mauve blotches and I am told her health is a ‘grave matter.’

“I stay with Lynne all night and watch as she can’t hear or see me and I just hold her hand and wait for the morning.”

Mr Crouch, who has children from a previous relationship, said he does not know when he will be able to return to his family in the UK.

His brother Jamie flew out to support him while he arranges for his wife’s body to be repatriated.

But with an autopsy yet to take place, the family do not yet know how Mrs Crouch contracted the bacteria or why it developed so quickly.

The widower said: “She is my wife, I can’t just leave her here.

“I don’t know when we will be back in the UK because we have to wait for the official paperwork and as it is New Year, many offices are shut.”

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