A 34-year-old mother of five is among the latest flu-related deaths reported in Dallas County, according to her family.
Patricia Hill’s family is stunned at their sudden loss that brought with it a cancer diagnosis no one knew about.
“Everything was fine… 48 hours later it wasn’t,” Keith Steinhour, the father of one Hill's daughters, said.
Before Hill became one of 14 flu-related deaths in Dallas County this flu-season, other numbers reigned supreme in her life.
Chief among them: she was the mother of five young girls.
Her youngest is only 5 years old.
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“She was a good mom,” he said. “She never really met a stranger… Probably one of the sweetest people you ever knew.”
Steinhour said he had just seen the 34-year-old two Saturdays ago.
“Picked up the girls and she coughed a couple times, but it wasn’t anything I thought was bad,” he said.
But that same day he said Hill was hospitalized with flu-like symptoms.
Hill, he said, suffered complications, including contracting pneumonia.
Doctors also revealed something even Hill was unaware of: She had acute leukemia, according to Steinhour.
He said he believed the stress of recently losing her job, moving and her health took an immediate toll.
“The next night her brother called me at 2:30 in the morning, 'If you want to see her again, you better hurry up because she’s dead,'” Steinhour said.
Steinhour said he did not believe Hill received a flu shot, and questioned whether it would have made a difference.
Dallas County Health and Human Services stresses the importance of getting a flu shot, especially for those with chronic health conditions.
DCHHS has been providing free flu shots for adults and children at their clinics and at community clinics.
The next community event is Thursday from 1–3 p.m. at the South Garland Branch Library.
Hill's funeral will be Saturday in Oklahoma City. Steinhour launched a GoFundMe account to help with expenses.