Dad died after being bitten by mosquito
By Dave GooderhamA DAUGHTER has paid a moving tribute to her father who died after being bitten by a mosquito while enjoying an exotic holiday.James Patterson, of London Road, Newmarket, died almost two months after being paralysed by the bite during an extended break in Thailand following his retirement last year.
By Dave Gooderham
A DAUGHTER has paid a moving tribute to her father who died after being bitten by a mosquito while enjoying an exotic holiday.
James Patterson, of London Road, Newmarket, died almost two months after being paralysed by the bite during an extended break in Thailand following his retirement last year.
The father-of-six was left paralysed by the bite and developed Japanese encephalitis. He stayed in a Thai hospital for more than a month until he was airlifted home on August 11 in a vegetative state.
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Mr Patterson, 66, was then taken to the West Suffolk Hospital, Bury St Edmunds, where he remained in the same condition.
Further tests were carried out when he was transferred to Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, before he returned to the Bury St Edmunds hospital, where he died on August 27.
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His daughter, Joanne, who flew to Thailand after her father was bitten, said: “He was a very caring dad, a caring man and a fantastic person. His death was a great shock as we didn't expect him to die like that.
“He was such a fit man and up until the day he became ill, he was running up and down the beach.
“He collapsed with flu-like symptoms as the illness infected his brain. This in turn went to his spine and he was paralysed.
“He loved going to the horse shows with me and we used to travel a lot to the horse fairs.”
Mr Patterson, also known as Jimmy, was well-known in the town's racing industry and had worked with horses all his life.
Having served his apprenticeship with Tommy Craig in Ayr, he worked as a travelling head lad for Jack Calvert at Thirsk before moving to Newmarket as a horsebox driver.
For 14 years before his retirement, Mr Patterson was senior driver for Racehorse Transport Ltd in Chippenham.
Owner, Jim Ratcliffe, said: He was an exceptionally good box driver and he felt very passionately about the care of the horses. He was a very good person and it was a dreadful to happen while on holiday.”
Mr Patterson was known for his ability to handle horses, while he also enjoyed hunting, hare coursing and dancing.
He left a mother, Elizabeth Chalmers, two sisters, Aileen and Delia, his children, Joanne, Caroline, Heather, Christine, James and Alistair, and numerous grandchildren.