Fire Captain dies from bacteria possibly inhaled on wildland fire

Matt Moore
Matt Moore. Photo courtesy of the Murrieta Firefighters Association

This is scary as hell. A firefighter has died after being infected with a rare brain-eating amoeba that usually lives in soil. A biopsy showed his brain had been invaded by the parasite Balamuthia mandrillaris.

From The Californian:

“MURRIETA — Murrieta Fire Capt. Matt Moore died Monday night at UCSD Medical Center in San Diego, succumbing to complications from meningitis, fire department officials said.

Moore, 43, a 17-year veteran of the department, had been hospitalized in a coma for the last two weeks.

He had been in various hospitals since November battling an aggressive form of meningitis. It is believed Moore inhaled a parasite while fighting the region’s wildfires late last year. The parasite reportedly caused swelling in his brain.

He is survived by wife, Sherry; daughter, Alyssa, 16; sons Trent and Brandon, both 13; brother, Mark Moore, who also is a captain in the city’s fire department; sister, Jill; and parents Carol and Phil Moore.

The fire department will hold a procession today to bring Moore’s body to England Family Mortuary in Temecula from the medical center in San Diego’s Hillcrest community.”

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