Young man dies from mystery infection

A DEVASTATED couple have been left heartbroken following the death of their youngest son after he was struck down by a "chance in a million" infection.

A DEVASTATED couple have been left heartbroken following the death of their youngest son after he was struck down by a "chance in a million" infection.

James Brown, 21, died last month at West Suffolk Hospital just days after contracting gastro-enteritis.

His mother Janet, of Gloucester Road, Bury St Edmunds, said the exact cause of his death remained a mystery and it was this which made it even harder for the close-knit family to cope.

Mrs Brown, whose youngest son was known as Jimmy to his family and friends, said: "The not knowing does make it harder and the fact Jimmy was fine the day before.

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"He spoke to me for about ten minutes on the evening before he died. He had a bit of a stomach ache, but he looked fine. His last words were 'I love you mum, I will see you tomorrow'.

"We are still in shock, we can't believe it. I don't think it has really hit us yet – I keep thinking I am going to wake up from this nightmare."

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Mr Brown, a chef at the Priory Hotel in Bury, leaves behind Janet and his father John, three brothers and a sister who all lived on the Mildenhall Estate .

Mrs Brown said her son loved spending time with his family saying: "He was a very happy, bubbly person who thought the world of his family. He was always playing with his nieces and nephews.

"No one had a grievance with him and no one had any bad words against him."

Mrs Brown said her son only started feeling the affects of gastro-enteritis two days before his death on June 19 .

She said: "The day Jimmy died, we found him in bed, in a sweat and dazed with glassy eyes.

"The doctors at the hospital said he had some form of infection and that it was a million to one chance of someone catching it – sadly it had to be our Jimmy.

"We will be looking for more answers but we are just trying to come to terms with his death at the moment."

Mr Brown went to Tollgate Primary School, Howard Middle School and County Upper School, all in Bury, before starting work at the hotel as a kitchen assistant before working his way up to the position of chef.

In a poignant letter to the family, Sarah Morris-Keating , director of the Priory Hotel, said: "Everyone at the hotel is in a state of shock and sadness.

"Jimmy was so well liked and respected by all his colleagues. I don't think any of us imagined how quickly he'd progress or how indispensable he would become.

"He showed real talent and learned fast. Jimmy was always helpful, polite and pleasant to deal with and always willing to go the extra mile.

"He was a hugely valued employee and he will be greatly missed."

Ms Morris-Keating recalled one time when Mr Brown, with little experience or training, single handedly took control of the kitchen and produced a dinner for more than 50 people.

A hospital spokesman said he was unable to comment about individual cases but that the coroner has been informed of Mr Brown's death.

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