There is a lot of Kansas separating the towns of Liberal and Matfield Green.
Liberal is an Oklahoma panhandle border town. The 20,000 who make Liberal home depend on oil, gas, and helium as well as agriculture. Its closer to Denver, Colorado than Kansas City, Kansas.
Matfield Green is just off I-35, northeast of Wichita halfway to Topeka. The Chase County town has just 60 people. Known for the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve, Chase County has about 3000 residents.
What binds these two Kansas towns together are the deaths of two children from E. coli, and the Wesley Regional Medical Center in Wichita, where both died.
Dead is 4-year old Brant Burton, son of T.W. and Rachelle Burton of Matfield Green and 18-month old Tanner Strickland of Liberal. Tanner’s brother continues to battle E. coli at the Wichita hospital.
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment is investigating the deaths.