A second Vermonter has died from the Eastern equine encephalitis virus.
The Vermont Health Department confirms that Scott Sgorbati , 49, of Sudbury, passed away after battling the illness for several weeks.
"People just love the family," said Colleen Wright, a friend of the family.
Friends of Scott Sgorbati put out collection jars, and planned a fundraiser -- to help offset his family's financial burdens once he got sick with Triple E. He was bitten by an infected mosquito and died Tuesday.
"We all stick together in this area," said Wright.
Human cases of Triple-E or Eastern Equine Encephalitis are very rare. But those who contract the aggressive form of the virus often die or are left with lasting neurological problems.
The first Triple-E death in Vermont came two weeks ago -- 87-year-old Richard Breen of Brandon.
Following his death -- the state began an aerial assault against mosquitoes carrying the illness -- spraying swampy areas in Brandon and Whiting. Monday the state confirmed about half of the infected bugs were killed by the insecticide. But acknowledged that it's likely there are infected mosquitoes across the state -- and that it's important to protect yourself by covering up -- and using DEET repellent when outside.
"We love these people and we want to help," said Wright. She hopes the September 22nd spaghetti dinner will help raise money for the Sgorbati family to replace their furnace and fix their roof. And will provide a chance to honor a beloved neighbor.
"It's a sad time, but we can get through this," said Wright.
The state also recommends limiting time spent outdoors at dawn and dusk and getting rid of standing water around your home.
The risk will remain this year until after the first hard frost.
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