Just hours after a bride in New Zealand tied the knot to the love of her life, a tragedy unfolded.
Jamieka McCarthy Harford, 26, died from a bacterial infection mere hours after she fell ill during her wedding ceremony in Auckland on Saturday, Dec. 9, according to the New Zealand Herald.
— 7 News Melbourne (@7NewsMelbourne) December 13, 2017
On Facebook, photos showed the bride walking down the aisle during the ceremony, which was held at a golf course about 20 miles from Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city.
Her husband, Alistair, told the New Zealand Herald that his newly-wedded wife’s sudden death was devastating.
“This has been incredibly difficult to process. She was taken from us without notice by a horrible, deadly disease,” he said.
The report said she died of a bacterial infection linked to meningitis.
I can't stress to you all how severe Meningitis is! It weakens your immune system and it's often misdiagnosed for the flu, don't ignore signs and get a spinal tap to make sure. https://t.co/lJgJoTzE05
— Be$T StuFF on Earth (@VanityAli) December 13, 2017
“Jamieka was so happy to be married and the wedding was a beautiful, happy occasion surrounded by love,” a statement from her family reads, according to the NZ Herald. “She was a beloved wife, daughter, granddaughter, sister, niece, cousin and friend. She will be missed forever.”
Harford was called a “the most kind-hearted person in the world who loved life and she always put others before herself,” the statement added.
Tragedy of bride, 26, who died just hours after marrying love of her life after catching deadly infectionhttps://t.co/XH8TZImctH
— The Daily Record (@Daily_Record) December 13, 2017
The Auckland Regional Public Health Service said her death is under investigation.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, meningococcal disease “can refer to any illness caused by the type of bacteria called Neisseria meningitidis, also known as meningococcus.” Meanwhile, “these illnesses are often severe and can be deadly. They include infections of the lining of the brain and spinal cord (meningitis) and bloodstream infections (bacteremia or septicemia),” the CDC states.
The bacteria can be spread by close contact or many hours of prolonged contact with an infected person.