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Illness Besets Birthday Party Guests

A party for two birthday celebrants in Chicago Heights ended badly when a number of guests got sick. Some suspect the water they drank is to blame.
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Photo Of A Birthday Cake. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Photo Of A Birthday Cake. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

CBS Chicago (con't)

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(WBBM) – A party for two people in Chicago Heights–both celebrating their 75th birthdays–ended badly when a number of guests got sick.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780′s Michele Fiore Reports

It happened at the First Presbyterian Church around 8:30 p.m. Saturday.  Three people, including Vera Gardner and Margie Beatty, both in their 60s, were transported to St. James Hospital in Chicago Heights with gastro-intestinal issues.

Beatty’s son, Jimmy Beatty, says the family had brought all their own food and drinks to the party, and some suspect the incident resulted from bottled water.

The store where the water was purchased, Ultra Foods in Chicago Heights, has since pulled the water “Crystal Lake” from its shelves.

A manager at Ultra tells Newsradio 780 this was a precautionary measure.  He says he also sent an e-mail to all other Ultra stores to advise them of the incident, but does not know whether they too have pulled the water from their shelves.

Jimmy Beatty believes the most likely culprit of the sudden illness is the water, since family members had already eaten, and it wasn’t until right after they sipped the water that they began to vomit.

Two of the three victims had been sitting at the same table, the third was at the table next to them.

Beatty says Chicago Heights police have another idea on what may have contributed to the incident, a combination of water and sparkling apple juice.  Beatty says the same glasses used for the sparkling apple juice were also used for water, and that police suspect the combination had an ill effect on some guests.

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