The Blacklist and Twin Peaks Actor Clark Middleton Dies at 63 After Contracting West Nile Virus

Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic Clark Middleton

Clark Middleton, who appeared on The Blacklist and Showtime’s Twin Peaks revival, has died. He was 63.

The actor died in his Los Angeles home on Sunday as a result of the West Nile Virus, according to his wife Elissa.

“With heavy hearts we announce the passing of a life eminently worthy of celebration: Clark Tinsley Middleton, 63 – beloved actor, writer, director, teacher, hero, husband, beacon, friend,” she said in a statement, Variety reported. “Clark transitioned on October 4th as a result of West Nile Virus, for which there is no known cure. Clark was a beautiful soul who spent a lifetime defying limits and advocating for people with disabilities.”

West Nile Virus is a mosquito-borne disease with no vaccine or treatment. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most people infected with West Nile Virus do not feel sick, though one in five people who contract the disease develop symptoms and about one in 150 people develop a serious, sometimes fatal, illness.

A gifted character actor, Middleton had recurring roles on Law & Order, Twin Peaks, The Path and The Blacklist, on which he played DMV employee Glen Carter in 13 episodes.

Will Hart/NBCU Clark Middleton in The Blacklist 

His other television credits include Fringe, Gotham, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and American Gods.

On film, Middleton appeared in notable titles such as Serendipity, Kill Bill Vol. 2, Sin City, Snowpiercer and Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance).

Behind the camera, Middleton wrote and produced short films Idee Fixe and My Milonga, which he also directed.

Offscreen, Middleton — who was diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis when he was 4 — was a fierce advocate for those with the condition and acted as a spokesperson for the Arthritis Foundation.

He also founded The Young Mels, a support network named after his father dedicated to children living with juvenile arthritis.

RELATED: Remembering the Stars We’ve Lost in 2020

“My dad refused to let me quit,” Middleton said in a 2017 blog post for the Arthritis Foundation. “He constantly instilled in me that I could define my own reality by how I thought about myself and how I carried myself. He wouldn’t allow me to think of myself as a victim. He taught me a lot about determination and courage.”

“He knew how important it was for me to be independent, and not to expect any handouts just because I had a disability. I had to earn it,” he continued. “The consequence is a wonderful life.”

Middleton is survived by his wife, his brother and his mother, according to Variety.

The Arthritis Foundation has set up a memorial fund in his honor.

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North Carolina elementary school teacher dies days after testing positive for Covid-19

Julie Davis, who taught at Norwood Elementary School in Stanly County, died from Covid-19 related complications, according to Michelle Bailey, a spokeswoman for the Stanly County School District. While the official cause of death hasn’t been released, Bailey confirmed Davis’ diagnosis.

“We are extending our deepest condolences to Mrs. Davis’ family,” the district said. “We were truly blessed by her professionalism and caring spirit.” A family member told CNN affiliate WSOC that Davis was one of the “hardest workers and that she was compassionate, caring, thoughtful and someone who loved to the depths of her soul.”

Davis began experiencing symptoms on September 25th and immediately self-quarantined, Bailey said.

On September 29th, the Stanly County Health Department notified parents of the teacher’s third grade class that they were required to quarantine for 14 days after being exposed to a staff member who had tested positive for the coronavirus.

Bailey told CNN the staff member was indeed Davis. CNN reached out to the North Carolina Office of Medical Examiner for confirmation of cause of death but we haven’t heard back.

None of the quarantined students have developed any symptoms or tested positive, Bailey said. The health department told the administration it believed Davis did not contract the virus from the school.

The return to remote learning this fall came with system outages, cyberattacks and other problems

Davis taught at Norwood Elementary School for two years, and she had earned a reputation as an “inspirational teacher who was always seeking ways to support every student so that they were able to fulfill their potential,” the district said in a Facebook post.

“Students absolutely loved being taught by Mrs. Davis,” the district said. “Her personality was infectious and she brought joy into the lives of the students, staff, and community.”

For the third time in less than a week, North Carolina is reporting more than 2,200 new Covid-19 cases, according to data released by the North Carolina Department of Health. On Monday, the state reported 2,258 additional infections related to the coronavirus, the state’s department of health reported.
North Carolina college student, seemingly otherwise healthy, dies of Covid-19 complications

North Carolina currently has the eighth highest number of cases in states across the US, according to data by Johns Hopkins University.

The total number of cases across the state to date is 219,754, with 3,637 Covid-19 related fatalities, the DOH said.

There have been at least 7,433,828 coronavirus cases in US overall and at least 209,928 deaths.

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A Student Dies, and a Campus Gets Serious About Coronavirus

BOONE, N.C. — Since last Monday, when a sophomore at his school died from suspected Covid-19 complications, Chase Sturgis says he has been thinking about his own bout with the coronavirus — and his own mortality.

Mr. Sturgis, 21, had been avoiding socializing over the summer, but as students at his school, Appalachian State University, began returning to campus in August, he yielded to temptation. “We went out to a bar,” he said. Within days he felt ill, and then tested positive for coronavirus: “To this day I have no sense of taste or smell.”

But even more unnerving is the “really, honestly scary” realization that he and the student who died, 19-year-old Chad Dorrill, were sick at about the same time, with similar symptoms and no known pre-existing conditions. “He died a week or two after he got the virus,” Mr. Sturgis said. “It has been about two weeks for me.”

Young people have generally been at lower risk of developing severe cases of Covid-19, and there have been only a few student deaths linked to the virus. But while that statistical advantage may have led to apathy about the pandemic at some institutions, Mr. Dorrill’s death has shaken the rural Appalachian State campus in the Blue Ridge Mountains, sparking questions about whether the college is doing enough to keep its students and faculty safe.

“It’s not a hoax, that this virus really does exist,” said a classmate of Mr. Sturgis, Emma Crider. “Before this, the overall mentality was ‘out of sight, out of mind.’”

As if to underscore that point, cases at Appalachian State, part of North Carolina’s state university system, spiked sharply last week. On Thursday, the school canceled an upcoming football game and announced outbreaks in four residence halls, two fraternity houses, the volleyball team and the football program. The school’s dashboard shows more than 700 confirmed Covid-19 cases at the 20,000-student campus since early June.

Aside from athletes, who must be tested under N.C.A.A. rules, Appalachian State has not conducted the kind of costly, widespread mandatory testing and tracing of people with and without symptoms that has helped control the virus at some campuses. Rather, the school has offered voluntary testing at its student health center and at “pop-up” test sites where students can walk up and be tested twice weekly.

That approach, the school’s website says, is based on C.D.C. guidance, which has advised against testing all students upon arrival to campus. Health experts have criticized the C.D.C.’s guidance as weak and confusing, but many large public colleges have based their coronavirus health regimens on it.

Surrounding Watauga County also experienced its worst 7-day period in the pandemic this past week, according to data collected by The New York Times. Coronavirus cases in the county have more than doubled since Sept. 1, to more than 1,300, and an update last week found “the largest percentage of cases in the 18-24 old age group.”

Despite efforts by most colleges and universities to contain the virus

Longtime ex-Major Leaguer dies, NFL game postponed, Ohio travel ban, more – coronavirus timeline Sept. 26-Oct. 2

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Here is our regular roundup of coronavirus facts, figures and numbers regarding Cleveland, Ohio, the United States and the world Sept. 26-Oct. 2:

Sept. 26: Cleveland has 19 new cases of coronavirus. Longtime Major League Baseball player Jay Johnstone (above, top right photo) dies of complications resulting from coronavirus. He played for eight teams in 20 years (1966-85). The jovial prankster was 74.

Sept. 27: It’s reported that Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh (above, top left photo) has tested positive and spent time in the hospital. The Ohio Department of Health says the state has 800 new cases, bringing the total to 150,809. A total of 4,741 people have died from the virus. Cleveland records 11 cases, taking the city’s total numbers to 5,454. Ages of victims range from 9 to 69. Death toll worldwide stands around 998,000.

Sept. 28: Kent State University quarantines 44 students in two residence halls after they were potentially exposed to the virus. Ohio’s cases increase by 993 from the previous day’s report. In all, 151,802 people have had the virus in Ohio. Five more people die in Ohio. Cleveland confirms 11 new cases. So far, one in 77 Ohioans is known to have contracted the virus.

Sept. 29: Ohio reports 1,105 new cases. Cleveland confirms 13 new cases. The Tennessee Titans suspend in-person activities through Friday after three players and five staffers test positive. The presidential debate is held in Cleveland, coronavirus-style. President Trump and Joe Biden do not shake hands upon entering. Fewer than 100 ticketed guests are allowed to attend, and all participants and media had to pass a Covid test before entering. The Cleveland Clinic is advising on all presidential debates.

Sept. 30: Ohio reports 1,080 new cases and 23 deaths Wednesday, bringing the death toll past 4,800. In Cleveland, 12 cases are reported. The state releases its latest travel advisory map, with seven states (Idaho, South Dakota, Iowa, Wisconsin, Kansas, Missouri and Mississippi) with high positivity rates. That’s a possible indicator the virus could be prevalent among the population. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention extends the no-sail order for cruise ships through Saturday, Oct. 31. CNN, citing Johns Hopkins University’s figures, says the United States has had at least 42,812 new cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the country’s total to 7,233,042 confirmed infections. Also: 946 new fatalities are reported, bringing the domestic death toll to at least 206,932. More than 63 million people in India may have contracted the virus – about 10 times higher than official reported figures – because of a survey that found antibodies in about one in 15 people over age 10. The Tennessee Titans’ outbreak results in the postponement of their scheduled game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Major League Baseball says it will allow a limited number of fans for the National League Championship Series and World Series in Arlington, Texas.

Oct. 1: It’s reported that presidential aide Hope Hicks has coronavirus. In Ohio, 11 counties are

Joan Marks, Doyenne of Genetic Counselors, Dies at 91

Joan H. Marks, who was a pioneer in genetic counseling, the practice of helping patients understand their risk of an inherited medical condition, and who developed it into a full-blown profession, died on Sept. 14 at her home in Manhattan. She was 91.

Her son Dr. Andrew Marks said the cause was heart failure.

Ms. Marks was the director of the graduate program in genetic counseling at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, N.Y., for 26 years. When she started, in 1972, the program, the first in the nation to educate genetic counselors, was three years old.

During her tenure, she developed it into the largest such program in the country, which it remains, and helped to establish a new health care field. Today there are thousands of certified genetic counselors in the United States — professionals trained in both genetics and counseling who help patients and their families confront a variety of inherited conditions.

But when Ms. Marks began, doctors were skeptical that anyone without a medical degree could understand the intricacies of genetics. So the role of talking with patients and their families about inherited disorders and potential birth defects was often left to nurses and others.

Ms. Marks saw a glaring need for skilled counselors who could explain genetics in plain language to patients, listen with empathy and guide them through a complex web of emotional, ethical and legal choices.

“We created the concept that a non-physician genetic counselor could not only assume some of the responsibilities of physicians in terms of medical genetic care, but also would do a better job because they were better trained in genetics and in counseling,” Ms. Marks told The New York Times in 1994.

Genetic testing was once primarily used for diagnosing genetic defects in fetuses and newborns, but by the mid-1990s it was able to predict the risk of developing a wide variety of adult conditions, including breast cancer and ovarian cancer. Today, more advanced tests can detect more than 6,000 genetic disorders, according to the Genetic Disease Foundation. Many are fatal or severely debilitating, and the need for trained counselors to help patients understand the test results has increased exponentially.

“Joan recognized the need for professionals to help people cope with the anxiety of living with the results of their genetic tests,” Mary-Claire King, a geneticist at the University of Washington in Seattle and a research partner of Ms. Marks, said in a phone interview.

“Women who learned they carried devastating mutations needed to decide what to do to save their own lives,” Ms. King said. (A prominent example is the actress Angelina Jolie, who has a family history of ovarian cancer and who, as a preventive measure, had a double mastectomy and later had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed.)

“She taught her students how to empower their patients,” Ms. King added. “Her standards define the field.”

Joan Harriet Rosen was born on Feb. 4, 1929, in Portland, Maine. Her mother, Lillian (Morrison) Rosen, played the piano for

Woman Consumes 3-Day-Old Spring Rolls, Dies From Food Poisoning Hours Later

KEY POINTS

  • The woman and her husband were watching a television programme together after having food
  • Suddenly, the woman started experiencing severe stomach pain and rushed to the washroom
  • She was found unconscious on the washroom floor

A woman in Samut Prakan, Thailand, allegedly died from food poisoning hours after she ate a reheated spring roll that was refrigerated for three days.

The unidentified 40-year-old woman and her husband were watching a television programme together Monday afternoon after consuming the reheated spring rolls they purchased from a local street market three days ago. Suddenly, the woman started experiencing severe stomach pain and rushed to the washroom. When she did not return even after one hour, the husband knocked on the washroom door to know if she was doing fine.

However, when she did not respond, he broke open the door and found her unconscious on the floor with vomit all around her, local media reported.

He immediately called the ambulance and attempted CPR till the medics arrived. Unfortunately, the woman was declared dead on the scene by the medics.

Tests revealed the woman died from food poisoning. She was severely dehydrated due to excessive vomiting and diarrhea.

The doctor who conducted the tests told local media that food poisoning is common and the symptoms are usually not that severe. Patients are, however, urged to seek medical help immediately and keep themselves hydrated.

The symptoms of food poisoning include abdominal pain and cramps, diarrhea , nausea, vomiting and fever. If the person continues to suffer from diarrhea for more than three days, he/she is required to seek medical help immediately.

The incident comes weeks after five members of a family in Pakistan died of food poisoning after consuming a lizard in their meal. The family was admitted to the hospital after they showed symptoms of food poisoning. The same day, two children died. A day later, their father also died while receiving treatment. A few days later, his daughter and another four-year-old child, who were initially recovering, stopped responding to treatment and died. Two women remained hospitalized.

Thai Food Stalls This photo taken on September 24, 2020 shows street vendors selling food on a railway track in Bangkok. Photo: ROMEO GACAD/AFP via Getty Images

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Timothy Ray Brown, 1st person cured of HIV, dies after cancer relapse

Timothy Ray Brown, famous for being the first person to be cured of HIV, has died from cancer at age 54.

Known as the “Berlin patient,” Brown was diagnosed with both HIV and acute myeloid leukemia, a cancer of the white blood cells, while living in Berlin more than a decade ago, according to Reuters. After his cancer diagnosis in 2006, Brown received radiation therapy and a bone marrow transplant in 2007; the goal of the treatment was to kill the existing cancer in his body and jumpstart production of healthy white blood cells, which are generated in the bone marrow. 

But the physician who led the procedure, Dr. Gero Huetter, aimed to treat both Brown’s leukemia and his HIV using the same operation, according to The Associated Press

Related: 7 revolutionary Nobel Prizes in medicine

Huetter sought out a bone marrow donor with a rare genetic mutation that provides natural resistance against HIV infection. The virus normally targets white blood cells called CD4-T cells, which it infiltrates through a specific receptor on the cells’ surfaces; people with the genetic mutation have an altered version of this receptor, so the virus can’t slip inside, Live Science previously reported.

After his initial bone marrow transplant in 2007, Brown was cleared of HIV and remained free of the virus until his death, The Associated Press reported. He required a second transplant in 2008 to eliminate his leukemia, but after years in remission, the cancer returned last year and spread to his spine and brain, Reuters reported.

“I’m heartbroken that my hero is now gone. Tim was truly the sweetest person in the world,” Brown’s partner Tim Hoeffgen wrote in a Facebook post, according to Reuters.

“We owe Timothy and his doctor, Gero Huetter, a great deal of gratitude for opening the door for scientists to explore the concept that a cure for HIV is possible,” Adeeba Kamarulzaman, president of the International AIDS Society, told Reuters.

Originally published on Live Science. 

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Timothy Ray Brown, First Patient Cured of H.I.V., Dies at 54

Next, to accommodate the donor’s immune cells, they had to wipe out Mr. Brown’s own immune system by bombarding him with chemotherapy and radiation. Next came the transplant procedure itself. On that same February day, Mr. Brown stopped taking his antiretroviral medication. Three months later, after a grueling recovery in which he almost died, he was H.I.V.-free.

For Mr. Brown, the epiphany came one day in the gym, when he found that he was developing muscles again after years of wasting away. “That was kind of my proof that it was gone,” he said.

Many hurdles remained. A recurrence of leukemia required a second transplant a year later. A brain biopsy left Mr. Brown temporarily paralyzed and nearly blind. He had to be taught how to walk and talk again. His recovery, complicated by injuries from a 2009 mugging in Berlin, left him with a stiff shoulder, limited vision and neurological damage, which prevented him from resuming his work as a translator.

“My life is far from perfect,” he said in 2015, “but it is still my life.”

He was living in Nevada in 2013 when he met Mr. Hoeffgen on the Scruff dating app. They moved to Southern California in 2015. In April, Mr. Brown was admitted to a cancer hospital; his leukemia, unrelated to H.I.V., had returned. Covid-19 restrictions kept the couple together on the medical campus for weeks.

This month, Mr. Hoeffgen told Mark S. King, a blogger and AIDS activist, that Mr. Brown had terminal cancer and had been receiving home hospice care. Mr. Brown was aware that he was dying.

“I have asked him what he wants me to tell people when we make his situation public,” Mr. Hoeffgen said. “He said: ‘Tell people to keep fighting. Fight for a cure for H.I.V. that works for everyone. I never wanted to be the only one.’”

In addition to Mr. Hoeffgen, Mr. Brown is survived by his mother.

One researcher asked whether the couple would consider donating Mr. Brown’s body to science.

“I said, ‘Thank you, but no,’” Mr. Hoeffgen said. “‘I think he’s done enough.’”

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First man cured of HIV dies of cancer: charity

The first person to be cured of HIV, Timothy Ray Brown — known as the “Berlin Patient” — has died after a battle with cancer, the International Aids Society (IAS) announced Wednesday. 

Brown made medical history and became a  symbol of hope for the tens of millions of people living with the virus that causes AIDS when he was cured more than a decade ago.

He had been living with a recurrence of leukaemia for several months and received hospice care at his home in Palm Springs, California. 

“On behalf of all its members… the IAS sends its condolences to Timothy’s partner, Tim, and his family and friends,” said IAS President Adeeba Kamarulzaman. 

“We owe Timothy and his doctor, Gero Hutter, a great deal of gratitude for opening the door for scientists to explore the concept that a cure for HIV is possible.”

Brown was diagnosed with HIV while was studying in Berlin in 1995. A decade later, he was diagnosed with leukaemia, a cancer that affects the blood and bone marrow.

To treat his leukaemia, his doctor at the Free University of Berlin used a stem cell transplant from a donor who had a rare genetic mutation that gave him natural resistance to HIV, hoping it may wipe out both diseases.

It took two painful and dangerous procedures, but it was a success: in 2008 Brown was declared free of the two ailments, and was initially dubbed “the Berlin Patient” at a medical conference to preserve his anonymity.

Two years later, he decided to break his silence and went on to become a public figure, giving speeches and interviews and starting his own foundation.

“I am living proof that there could be a cure for AIDS,” he told AFP in 2012. “It’s very wonderful, being cured of HIV.”

– ‘Champion’ –

Ten years after Brown was cured, a second HIV sufferer — dubbed “the London Patient” — was revealed to be in remission 19 months after undergoing a similar procedure. 

The patient, Adam Castillejo, is currently HIV-free. In August a California woman was reported to have no traces of HIV despite not using anti-retroviral treatment. 

It is thought she may be the first person to be cured of HIV without undergoing the risky bone marrow treatment. 

Sharon Lewin, president-elect of the IAS and director of the Doherty Institute in Melbourne, Australia, praised Brown as a “champion and advocate” of a cure for HIV.

“It is the hope of the scientific community that one day we can honour his legacy with a safe, cost-effective and widely accessible strategy to achieve HIV remission and curs using gene edition or techniques that boost immune control,” she said.

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