2-year-old dies after possible tick bite

Family Says Girl, 2, Died After Tick Bite

Family Says Girl, 2, Died After Tick Bite

The family of two-year-old Kenley Ratliff is sharing her story to warn other parents about how risky tick bites can be, especially for young children.

"Her mother and father cannot believe that she is gone that their baby girl is gone now", said Nichol Kirby, a family friend.

Kenley was a bubbly and happy little girl, who enjoyed taking Snapchat videos with her mom.

Doctors at the hospital prescribed antibiotics for the girl and placed her on a feeding tube during her final days.

"Yes, within less than like five days", Monica Kirby, a family friend, told the news station.

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Kenley Ratliff, of IN, was surrounded by friends and family during a several-day stay at Riley Hospital for Children IN Indianapolis, where her condition worsened from a 104-degree fever to a brain infection. Despite the wait, the Ratliff family and their friends are already raising awareness of RMSF. She also had a brain infection, swollen hands and rashes covering her body.

The family is now waiting for autopsy results to confirm if it was a tick bite that caused the 2-year-old's death.

Sadly, she passed away and now family members are waiting for answers.

Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever is a rare, tick-borne illness that's on the rise in Indiana.

"Her mother was holding her hand her little two year old hand was just so swollen it was nearly the size of her mother's", she described.

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A family friend of the Ratliffs, Nichol Kirby, told WISH-TV that the girl developed an irregular pattern of purple splotches and that the confusion over what caused the girl's condition made her deterioration even more harrowing.

Rocky Mountain spotted fever may have killed their 2-year-old.

Meanwhile, Kenley's mother has a message to other families, according to Kirby.

"She would be devastated to see this to happen to anyone else and I think she would just everyone to know how much she loved her baby girl that was her angel", she said. There were 40 cases reported in 2016, 10 more than the previous year, the Indiana Health Department stated.

If you would like to help the family pay for the funeral, go to the GoFundMe page set up in her honor.

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