Orange County mother dies from flu; family urges others to get vaccinated

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ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - A 54-year-old Orange County woman has died from the H1N1 flu, according to family members who spoke to WFTV.

Mindy Lamb died Tuesday just days after her birthday from complications of the H1N1 virus, according to family members. They said she had been hospitalized for two weeks prior to her death.

Mindy's husband, Rob Lamb, said he's devastated and wants to urge others to get a flu shot.

"She'd want you to know to get that shot.  Such a simple thing can save your life,” Rob told Eyewitness News reporter Karla Ray. “I lost my soul mate. We’ve been together 35 years.”

Mindy worked at Florida Hospital and taught classes online. The mom of three hadn’t made the time to get vaccinated this season.

“She kept going to do it and every time something came up. She was so busy and dedicated to everybody,” Rob said. “She always put everybody first. It was supposed to be [till] death do us part but it was supposed to be me first. Not my baby.”

Mindy left work early the first Friday of the year and the next day she was on life support, and diagnosed with H1N1.

She spent her last three weeks on a ventilator while her organs started shutting down.

By Tuesday, she was dead.

Department of Health officials say Mindy’s case is the first they’ve heard of this season in Orange County and her family homes their tragedy is a turning point for others.

“Isn’t your life worth 30 bucks?,” Rob said.

The Health Department said cases of the flu are not up but the severity of the cases is worse than in years past. They said it's similar to the 2009 H1NI epidemic.