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3rd death in So. Dakota- an 8 yr. old

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  • 3rd death in So. Dakota- an 8 yr. old


    Funeral Thursday for Rapid City boy who died of H1N1

    Jon Walker • Argus Leader • October 20, 2009

    A funeral is Thursday for a Rapid City boy who died of complications from the H1N1 flu virus.

    Jack Unkenholz, 8, died Sunday in Rapid City Regional Hospital, four days after his family took him to the emergency room with flu symptoms. He had been scheduled for a flu shot last Friday.

    Jack was diagnosed with Menkes syndrome soon after birth, which caused profound delays in mental and physical development. His mother said he still was an active third-grader who communicated with smiles and gestures.

    “You’ve done better things than walk and talk. You’ve taught me peace and grace and love in its truest and purest form,” Tasha Unkenholz said of her son.

    She and her husband, Eric, a Rapid City dentist, learned of their son’s disabilities when he was 4 months old. They said they knew his catching the flu would be serious but that his death still was a shock. Their other two children, Elise, 5, and Collin, 2, also caught the virus shortly before Jack, they said.

    His death is the third in South Dakota attributed to H1N1. The others are adults in their 30s and 40s.

    Jack’s service will begin at 11 a.m. Thursday in Canyon Lake United Methodist Church, with Kirk Funeral Home taking care of arrangements.