GUILDERLAND — Walter E. Cieszynski was a lifelong hunter. And, despite being weak from a 34-year battle with cancer, he went hunting one last time this fall. “He didn’t go far from the house. I was worried, and he gave me a time he’d be back,” said his wife. “He got a big deer.”

Walter Cieszynski’s wife and son believe he acquired a tick-borne disease from a blood transfusion, although the Red Cross says he did not. There is no requirement to screen blood donors for the potentially fatal disease.

Ticks can carry diseases besides Lyme, fatal diseases that few of us know about. 

Edie Abrams, an avid gardener, returned home after a week in the hospital — recovering from a tick-borne disease that can be fatal — and looked to see what flowers had bloomed in her absence. She discovered a tick crawling on her.

The overall complexity of Lyme disease as well as the absurdities of the political compliance has led to an ongoing nightmare.

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