Fresno mother on a mission after daughter dies from Lyme Disease

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- It's snapshots and pictures that Fresno mom Jody Hudson has left after her 22-year-old daughter Alex passed away in March, surrounded by family and friends.

"At the end, when we were all going around saying our different prayers to her and it was finally my turn and I was stroking her hair and telling her how much I loved her and it was okay for her to go, she raised her head off the pillow and looked up to Heaven and had the biggest smile on her face-- and she closed her eyes and passed away. I know she is in a better place."

Hudson calls that moment, her parting gift from her guardian angel.

By day, Hudson works at Catholic Charities running operations, but she's taken on another job to carry on her daughter's legacy and recently started the Alex Hudson Lyme Foundation.

Alex died from mast cell and lyme disease, which is caused by a tick bite.

"I don't know how Alex got the tick bite, but what I want to do is help prevent someone else from getting a tick bite and ultimately having this horrific disease."

Hudson said Alex didn't show the classical ring symptoms of a tick bite. Around 11-years-old, Alex started to have joint problems and for years was deemed a medical mystery until she was diagnosed in May of 2017.

"That's the thing with lyme, not only are people fighting to get better, they're fighting for people to believe in them, that they actually have this disease."

The vibrant and athletic girl, suffered for years and eventually weighed around 54 pounds at her death, but it's the way she lived Hudson is remembering her sweet daughter.

The CDC says about 30,000 cases of lyme disease are reported each year. Symptoms include fever, fatigue and muscle and joint aches. There are steps you can take to prevent lyme disease, including wearing long clothing, checking your pets and taking a shower after being outdoors

With this foundation, Hudson has plans to start outreach efforts to educate kids and adults and to start fundraising for research.

"So if I can help another parent that's in this dilemma, that's in this horrible whirlwind of uncertainly, then that's what I'm called to do."
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