Students go above and beyond to help teacher who nearly died from flesh-eating disease

DEARBORN COUNTY, IN (FOX19) - Two 6-year-old Dearborn County students are going above and beyond to help their teacher who nearly died from a flesh-eating disease.

The show of support is for Elizabeth Kruetzkamp, or "Mrs. K," to help get her back on her feet.

The Moores Hill Elementary School teacher said that she recently spent weeks in Dearborn County Hospital.

According to Kruetzkamp, she had been sick for two days around Memorial Day and decided to see a doctor. That's when she said she was diagnosed with a flesh-eating bacterial disease that nearly caused her to lose her leg and her life.

"It almost killed me in a matter of two days, and it caught the whole family off guard tremendously," Kruetzkamp said. "It was a 50-50 chance of me making it."

While Kruetzkamp was fighting for her life, her students Izzy Russell and Maddie Lanham were working on a project for her.

"We love her to death," Izzy said.

They tied purple bows and ribbons on poles, made signs to show support and even sold lemonade and heart pins that brought in $76. They donated the money they raised to Kruetzkamp.

"We knew it probably wouldn't be much but help with gas, food, whatever for the family," Misty Russell, Izzy's mother, said.

The whole town of Moores Hill is "purpled out" thanks to the girls.

"I think it's just really exciting that they would think of such a thing," Kruetzkamp said. "It means a lot. I love those little girls and all the kids from the class I had."

After spending two weeks in a medically induced coma and a week in rehab, Kruetzkamp said she is now in recovery.

She hopes to get back to the classroom as soon as possible, and not surprisingly, Izzy and Maddie said that they can't wait to see her there.

"Really happy she's still alive," Maddie said.

Kruetzkamp said the doctors are not sure how she contracted the bacteria, but they suspect it may have started with a mild infection on her toe.

She is scheduled to be back at work July 31 and is planning to be there.

To learn more about flesh-eating bacteria, click here.

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