One of twin brothers with swine flu dies

  • By Sharon Salyer Herald writer
  • Monday, April 4, 2011 11:54am
  • Local News

One of the twin bothers from Camano Island hospitalized last month for swine flu has died.

Michael Wolfe, 31, died early Saturday morning at Providence Regional Medical Center Everett, Don Wolfe, the young man’s father, said Monday.

His twin, Steven Wolfe, was released from the hospital March 29.

The brothers were hospitalized in early March and treated in the hospital’s intensive care unit.

The Wolfe brothers are 1998 graduates of Stanwood High School. They had been living temporarily with their grandparents on Camano Island.

A memorial service for Michael Wolfe is scheduled for 3 p.m. April 16 at the American Legion Post 92 at 26921 88th Ave. NW in Stanwood.

A spaghetti dinner fundraiser to help with medical bills for the brothers is scheduled for 1 p.m. April 23, said Pat Tenan of Camano Island, who is helping organize both events. This dinner will also be at the American Legion Post in Stanwood.

“The whole island is in disbelief,” Tenan said. “The boys are very well known.”

Camano Island artist Jack Dorsey told Tenan’s daughter that he had golfed with both of the Wolfe brothers. He immediately decided to donate artwork when he learned of the upcoming fundraiser, she said.

Donation jars are being distributed in Camano Island and Stanwood stores, Tenan said.

Plans are still being firmed up, but a silent auction is being planned as part of the fundraising dinner, she said.

People are pitching in to help out, knowing that the Wolfe family faces large medical bills from the hospitalizations of the two young men, she said.

Michael Wolfe’s death is a reminder that swine flu tends to be more severe in younger people, said Dr. Gary Goldbaum, health officer for the Snohomish Health District. “Again, it’s back to our basic message: Influenza is not a trivial disease.”

Michael Wolfe is the second person on Camano Island to die of swine flu this influenza season.

Will Gardner, 34, died March 10 of swine flu. He was a well-known coach and board member with Stanwood-Camano Youth Football.

Snohomish County recorded its first flu death last month, a 52-year-old man who had lived in both Lynnwood and Everett.

On Monday, five Snohomish County residents were hospitalized with influenza, and another county resident was hospitalized in King County, Goldbaum said.

“That is a pretty high level of hospitalizations right now, relative to the end of the (influenza) season,” Goldbaum said.

The Everett Clinic is reporting that 25 to 30 percent of patients who undergo rapid tests for influenza have results indicating they have the flu, he said.

“It suggests to me that the peak in the community has been in the past several weeks,” Goldbaum said. “We’re probably approaching the down slope and … the flu season will come to an end over the next month.”

However, influenza may continue to sicken people at lower levels for some time, he said.

Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486 or salyer@heraldnet.com.

Memorial, fundraiser

A memorial service for Michael Wolfe is scheduled for 3 p.m. April 16.

A spaghetti dinner and silent auction fundraiser to help with medical bills for both Michael Wolfe and his twin brother, who was also hospitalized with swine flu, is scheduled for 1 p.m. April 23.

Both events will be held at the Stanwood American Legion Post 92, 26921 88th Ave. NW. Call 360-387-5420 for information on the fundraiser.

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