MULBERRY, Fla. - A Florida man has died after receiving a bite from a brown recluse – a venomous spider typically found in the American Midwest, including Indiana.
According to ABC News , 62-year-old Ron Reese was renovating a home when he was bitten by the spider.
Reese ignored the wound, thinking it would heal on its own, according to Reese's father, Bill Reese, 89.
“It bit him right on the back of his neck and rotted out to the vertebrae,” Bill Reese told NewsChannel5's Scripps sister station WFTS. “He wasn’t afraid of anything. He thought he was invincible. But he wasn’t.”
Reese's father told WFTS that the bite eventually paralyzed half of his son's body.
Dr. Dona Seger, executive director of the Tennessee Poison Center and a professor at Vanderbilt University, said brown recluse spiders are typically not looking for confrontation with humans.
“They are reclusive. They don’t like to be around you,” she said. “People get bitten when they put a hand in a drawer or under a bed.”
Spider bites should be taken seriously, especially if symptoms like fever and rash develop in the first few days, according to Seger.