A WOMAN who died of meningococcal disease on the weekend had only just got married hours before.
Jamieka McCarthy Harford, 26, died in Auckland on Saturday after falling ill during her wedding ceremony. She later died of the bacterial infection linked to meningitis.
Jamieka's husband told Newshub that her sudden death was a huge shock.
"Her passing was a huge shock to everybody to lose her so quickly and this has been incredibly difficult to process," he said.
"She was taken from us without notice by a horrible, deadly disease."
The marriage took place on the Whangaparaoa Peninsula, with photos depicting the smiling bride walking down the aisle on a sunny golf course.
A family statement to Newshub said, "Jamieka was so happy to be married and the wedding was a beautiful, happy occasion surrounded by love."
Her family described Jamieka as "the most kind-hearted person in the world who loved life and she always put others before herself. She was a beloved wife, daughter, granddaughter, sister, niece, cousin and friend. She will be missed forever."
The Auckland Regional Public Health Service has confirmed it is investigating the death which was likely caused by meningococcal disease.
ARPHS said it was working closely with the family to prevent further transmission of the disease.
Meningococcal disease is caused by bacteria spread by very close contact or many hours of prolonged contact with an infected person - and is serious and potentially fatal.
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.