A Long Island pizzeria owner joins the growing list of tourists who have died suddenly in the Dominican Republic.
Vittorio Caruso, 56 of Glen Cove, died June 17 while staying at the Boca Chica Resort in Santo Domingo, the US State Department confirmed to Fox News Friday.
His sister-in-law, Marie Caruso, said he was in good health when he suddenly went into respiratory distress after “drinking something.”
“We were told he wasn’t responding to any meds he was given and died,” Lisa Maria Caruso told Fox News, adding that the family is awaiting autopsy results. “I honestly don’t know exactly what happened, as we have been told conflicting stories from different people there.”
Like the families of others who have died in the Dominican, Caruso said local authorities have provided vague answers about how their seemingly healthy loved ones unexpectedly fell fatally ill while vacationing in the Carribean nation.
“It is very hard to get a straight story from anyone there,” she said. “They even wanted to cremate the body. We insisted on having the body sent back here.”
Caruso, who was scheduled to return to New York June 27, is among three tourists in the past month and at least 11 in the past year who died while vacationing in the Dominican Republic. Dozens more have reported illnesses.