- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 7, 2015

WINTER HAVEN, Fla. (AP) - A central Florida man is dead after health officials and family members say he was infected by flesh-destroying bacteria found in brackish water that enters the body through open wounds.

Polk County officials confirmed Friday that a resident contracted vibrio vulnificus and passed away. Family members told local media that 56-year-old Richard Corley was infected last month during an annual fishing trip in Estero Bay, off southwest Florida. They say he cut his leg on Sept. 27, and his leg became blistered and swollen within a day. Doctors in Winter Haven attempted to halt the infection, but Corley died Sept. 30.

Corley’s brother, Brian Corley, told the media that he hopes public health officials will do a better job in the future of educating people about the dangers of going in the water.

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