UPDATED 9:48 AM PT — Wednesday, June 5, 2019
Speculation is surrounding a small hotel resort in the Dominican Republic after the deaths of three American tourists in less than a week.
41-year-old Miranda Schaup-Werner died May 25th after she and her husband checked into their room at the Bahia Principe Resort in La Romana. According to reports, Schaup-Werner settled in with a drink from their room’s mini bar, and shortly after she screamed out for help before she collapsed to the floor. Her husband, Dan Werner, alerted paramedics. They tried to revive her, but she passed away in the hotel room.
“At one point she was sitting there happily, smiling and taking pictures, and the next moment she was in acute pain and called out for Dan and she collapsed,” stated Jay McDonald, Werner family spokesperson.
Schaup-Werner’s family didn’t come forward with the story of her death until they heard about a Maryland couple’s passing at the same resort just five days later. Cynthia Day and Nathaniel Holmes checked into the hotel the same day as the Werner’s, and were set to leave on May 30th. It was that same day they were found dead in their hotel room.
Local officials said carbon monoxide could have played a role in their deaths, but their family isn’t convinced.
“I was just waiting for them to come back today, he said was gonna come see the baby today,” stated Dajuan Holmes-Hamilton, Nathaniel Holmes’ daughter. “I was numb, I’m still numb.”
The suddenness of the three deaths has caused much suspicion as all three of the victim’s autopsy reports shows the same causes of death — respiratory failure and pulmonary edema, or excess of fluid in the lungs.
Both families noted the health of their lost loved ones. Schaup-Werner had heart issues in the past, while the engaged couple were both prescribed blood pressure medication. However, relatives said they were in healthy conditions at the time of their passing.
Local Dominican Republic officials launched an investigation into Day and Holmes deaths, but said Schaup-Werner’s didn’t seem suspicious. However, the State Department and FBI are now following up on her passing.
Five Americans have now died while vacationing overseas in a span of just a few weeks, with a couple in Fiji recently passing from an unknown illness. As investigations remain ongoing in all of these cases, it does bring cause for concern as summer travel plans for many lie ahead.