Thomas Eric Duncan died Wednesday morning in Texas, according to the hospital where he was being treated for Ebola.
Duncan, the first person ever diagnosed with Ebola in the United States, died at 7:51 a.m., according to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas.
“He fought courageously in this battle,” the hospital said in a statement. “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.”
Youngor Jallah, the daughter of Duncan’s girlfriend Louise Troh, could be heard weeping in the background during a phone call on Wednesday morning.
“Youngor is crying right now,” said Aaron Yah, Jallah’s husband. “She cannot talk.”
Family members gathered in Dallas were able to see Duncan on Monday at the hospital via a laptop camera in his hospital room. He was on dialysis and a respirator, according to health officials. Saymendy Lloyd, a family spokeswoman, had said that the family was told that Duncan’s liver was improving and his fever was dropping.
Duncan traveled from Liberia to the United States last month. About five days later, he began developing symptoms and sought treatment at the hospital, but he was sent home for reasons that still remain unclear.
He was brought back in an ambulance two days later and placed in isolation. On Sept. 30, he was diagnosed with Ebola. Duncan had remained in critical condition for several days and had recently been given experimental treatment.
“I’m praying for my family to be okay,” Duncan’s 19-year-old son, Eric Karsiah Duncan, said at his mother’s church Tuesday night. “I am praying that my dad makes it out safely….I hope they find a cure.”