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First person diagnosed with Ebola in U.S. dies in Texas hospital

The first person diagnosed with Ebola in the United States,  Thomas Eric Duncan, died on Wednesday morning at a Dallas hospital, a hospital spokesman said.

“It is with profound sadness and heartfelt disappointment that we must inform you of the death of Thomas Eric Duncan this morning at 7:51 am. Mr. Duncan succumbed to an insidious disease, Ebola. He fought courageously in this battle. Our professionals, the doctors and nurses in the unit, as well as the entire Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas community, are also grieving his passing. We have offered the family our support and condolences at this difficult time.” hospital spokesman Wendell Watson said in an emailed statement.

Duncan became ill after arriving in the Texas city from Liberia on Sept. 20 to visit family, heightening concerns the world’s worst Ebola outbreak on record could spread outside of the three worst-hit West African countries. About 48 people with whom Duncan had been in contact are being monitored.

Duncan was the first person diagnosed with Ebola in the United States. He is believed to have contracted the disease while visiting Liberia.