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E. Coli Picnic Outbreak Kills Lowell Draffen, Former Superintendent, And Sickens 75 People

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A former school official has died from an E. coli sickening that has affected 75 people, 14 of whom have been hospitalized.

Lowell Draffen, a 73-year-old former superintendent at several school districts in Ohio, was one of three people who developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a type of kidney failure, as a result of the illness. Draffen and others had eaten food at a July 3 customer-appreciation picnic at Neff's Lawn Care in Germantown, Ohio. Eighteen cases have so far been confirmed as an E. coli 0157 infection.

Dayton Daily News reports that Draffen had retired from his last post as superintendent of Trotwood-Madison county only two yeas ago. A health commissioner handling the case, Jim Gross, told the paper that "Public Health will continue to examine all aspects of this food borne tragedy.”

The source of the outbreak is still unknown. The remaining two suffering from kidney failure -- a 4-year-old girl and a 14-year-old boy -- remain in serious condition.

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