Flesh-Eating Bacteria from Crab Dish Sends Colorado Mom to the Hospital

After PETA Staffer's Mother Nearly Dies, Family Issues Warning to Anyone Who Eats Sea Animals

For Immediate Release:
November 30, 2017

Brooke Rossi 202-483-7382

Centennial, Colo. – On September 18, 63-year-old Centennial resident Myong Hui Trahan ate a Korean raw-crab dish called gejang—and it nearly killed her. She came into contact with Vibrio bacteria, which turned into “flesh-eating bacteria,” and within days, itchy skin turned into large bloody lesions and blood clots all over her body. By September 22, she had nearly died from sepsis and cardiac arrest—and today, wounds remain all over her body. She faces more months of hospitalization, along with surgeries to clean out bad tissue and try to save her fingertips and toes.

Trahan now says that she will never eat meat again—and as a warning for anyone who eats sea animals, she and her daughter, PETA staffer Lillian Trahan, are releasing graphic photos (below) revealing the extent of her wounds. Lillian is also available for interviews to discuss how seafood nearly tore her family apart and is a danger to human health.

“My family and I don’t want anyone to go through what my mom did,” she says. “When just one bite of contaminated crab can be deadly, the safest choice is to stick to healthy and humane vegan meals.”

Vibriosis is a bacterial infection contracted from consuming raw or undercooked seafood or swimming in contaminated water. It can cause fever, abdominal distress, skin infection, sepsis, and even death. Amputations can become necessary. It’s more severe in patients with suppressed immune systems, like Myong Hui Trahan, but can still cause even very healthy, young people to be hospitalized.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—notes that crustaceans and other sea animals feel pain, yet live lobsters are dropped into boiling water, crabs are dismembered while still conscious, and fish are gutted on the decks of fishing boats. And because fish absorb contamination from the water in which they live, fish flesh is laced with toxins, such as mercury, lead, arsenic, PCBs, pesticides, and even industrial-strength fire retardant.

Graphic photos of Myong Hui Trahan follow, and more photos are available here.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind