Billboard warns about brain-eating amoeba after family loses son

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TAMPA, Fla. — A Florida family had a billboard put up to warn others about the dangers of the brain-eating amoeba Naegleria fowleri.

Sandra and Timothy Gompf posted a billboard in Tampa in honor of their son Philip, who died from meningitis caused by Naegleria fowleri in 2009, according to ABC News.

“We can’t bring Philip back. But he’d want us to inform and empower YOU,” the family says on their website. “Prevention is simple. Use nose clips or avoid fresh water activities that may force water up the nose during the hottest months.”

In a video on the family’s website, Sandra Gompf says Phillip contracted the infection after he went swimming in a lake. His first symptom was a headache that appeared five days later. The morning after, the family had difficulty waking him up and took him to the emergency room.

“He was found pretty quickly to have severe meningitis, and three days later, he was gone,” Gompf says in the video.

Both Sandra and Timothy Gompf are doctors who specialize in serious infections.

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