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McCoid, owner of Watsonville dance studio, dies suddenly

Posted: Saturday, Oct 6th, 2012

Carrie McCoid announces her Steps Dance Studio dancers in this undated photo from Facebook.

WATSONVILLE — Carrie McCoid, the owner of the Steps Dance Studio in Watsonville, mother of a four-month-old daughter and a recent widow, died Wednesday, three days after first showing flu-like symptoms. She was 37.

McCoid’s mother-in-law, Gerri McCoid, said Carrie died either at Watsonville Community Hospital or in her mother’s arms at home, and it was not yet known Friday why she died. The autopsy was performed Friday, Gerri McCoid said, and the family was awaiting the coroner’s report.

Carrie’s death is another tragedy for the family. Her husband, Joshua McCoid, died March 18 when his SUV slammed into a tree off State Park Drive. He was 35.

“It’s pretty awful,” Gerri said. “They were about as happy as they could be.”

Because Carrie McCoid’s symptoms moved so fast, there was speculation that it could be spinal meningitis, allergies, a lung infection, Hantavirus or that she was septic, her mother-in-law said.

“They’re kind of still sorting it out,” Gerri said. “They were asking her if she’d recently been camping.”

Carrie McCoid, who moved to Aromas six months ago, started showing flu-like symptoms on Sunday night, including a fever that came on fast, Gerri McCoid said.

Her symptoms progressed and she went to Urgent Care on Tuesday, according to her mother-in-law, but she was later released.

She later collapsed, and her mother was giving her CPR at home, before she was taken to Watsonville Community Hospital, McCoid said.

In addition to her 4-month-old-daughter, Maryella, Carrie was stepmother to Jakob, 16.

In addition to owning Steps Dance Studio, McCoid was also a realtor.

According to a post on Facebook, a candlelight vigil for Carrie had been planned but was later postponed. Her death sparked an outpouring of support on Facebook.

On Thursday, Hannie Vaughn, a Steps Dance Studio dancer, posted this on the site: “R.I.P to Carrie. She will always be known as an amazing mother and dancer.”

Someone running the Steps Dance Studio Facebook page posted the following on Wednesday: “We all feel your smile, Carrie. Watch over us as we continue on.”

Another Facebook commenter wrote: “I got chills when I read your post, I am sorry for your loss of a friend and I am praying for her family.” A photo caption on the site reads, “Teacher Carrie announcing her dancers who all love her so and will miss her!”

According to the Steps Dance Studio website, the studio on Airport Drive was founded in 2005 by Sandra Staka. Staka sold Steps to McCoid in July of 2010. McCoid had worked with Staka as a teacher and co-director for more than two years before buying the studio. The Steps dancers performed at many events in the area, including the Santa Cruz County Fair.

Gerri said a memorial service for Carrie is being planned for the end of October.

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