Mecklenburg County commissioner Valerie Woodard died of a rare blood disorder, board chairman Jennifer Roberts said Sunday.
Roberts said she spent time Sunday with Woodard's family, who told her the 56-year-old died of thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura. The disorder causes blood clots to form in the body, according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.
The institute said about 1,200 people develop TTP each year in the United States. The disorder occurs suddenly and lasts for days, weeks or even months. Most people recover when treated promptly, the institute said.
Roberts said Woodard's husband wanted more people to know about the disorder and its symptoms, which include paleness or jaundice, feeling tired or weak, fever, a fast heart rate or feeling short of breath.
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“If you catch it early, people can be treated,” Roberts said.
Woodard, who was running unopposed for a fourth term, died Friday, one day after she was admitted to Presbyterian Hospital.
A wake is scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Alexander Funeral Home, 1424 Statesville Ave. in Charlotte. A public viewing is set for 11 a.m. Thursday, followed by a funeral at noon at St. Paul Baptist Church, 1401 Allen St. in Charlotte.