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Woman claims she got sick from E. coli in Turkeyfoot Lake

Posted at 3:36 PM, Aug 02, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-02 18:07:32-04

PORTAGE LAKES , Ohio — A Massillon woman claimed she was badly burned from high levels of bacteria in Turkeyfoot Lake.

Despite the lake testing positive for E. coli earlier in the month, it was not closed to the public.

Tamara Mackey and her family took a four day trip to the lake, and by Monday, she was regretting her decision.

"We are packing up our stuff, and I’m like, my body is on fire. Like, my skin is on fire. It feels like I have 500 bees stinging me, and it was in places that the sun would’ve never hit," Mackey said.

She found burns on her chest and stomach. After the symptoms worsened, she visited her doctor, who said she had a fungal infection, but couldn't confirm the source.

Still, Mackey is convinced she got sick from exposure to what officials are calling unhealthy levels of bacteria in Turkeyfoot Lake.

"At that point is when I put two into together. This is when my daughter was sick. This is why my friend is sick. This is why her lips were burning, and this is why I have burns on me," she said.

Despite Portage Lakes Community posting a contamination advisory on Facebook, Mackey said there were no signs posted when she visited.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources tested the lake on July 17 and found high levels of E. coli.

While officials can't confirm if Mackey's rashes are from Turkeyfoot Lake, she did save a sample of the water and plans to have it tested.

RELATED: Massillon woman blames bacteria in Turkeyfoot Lake for rash and illness