Southeast Polk Student Dies From Complications of E. Coli

Southeast Polk Community School District (WHO-HD)

IOWA  —  Southeast Polk Community School District officials say a student has died as a result of complications of E. coli.

Willowbrook Elementary officials confirm Natalie Baker, a second grade student, died unexpectedly on Friday. Natalie’s mother said the death was very sudden, and urges parents to be on the lookout for signs of illness in their children, especially if they complain of a stomachache.

Funeral services for Natalie are pending, and the school’s counselor will be available for anyone needing support. A GoFundMe account has been set up to benefit Natalie’s family.

An email sent to parents from the school’s principal and counselor offers the following advice for speaking to children about death and recognizing signs they may need help.

Children may:

  • Appear unaffected
  • Ask questions about the death repeatedly
  • Be angry or aggressive
  • Be withdrawn or moody
  • Be sad or depressed
  • Become afraid
  • Have difficulty sleeping or eating
The message said these are all common reactions to death, and the best thing parents can do is listen to their kids and answer their questions honestly. Click here for further ways to help.