Wife in real-life "Fault in Our Stars" couple dies days after husband

Katie and Dalton Prager, in a photo from their Facebook page.

Facebook/Dalton and Katie Prager's Transplant Page

ST. LOUIS A Kentucky woman afflicted by cystic fibrosis died Thursday, five days after losing her husband to the same genetic lung disease.

Andrew Carpenter, the owner of Carpenter, Fritz & Vice Funeral Home in Flemingsburg, Kentucky, confirmed 26-year-old Katie Prager’s death and said funeral arrangements are pending.

Prager’s husband, 25-year-old Dalton Prager, died Saturday at a St. Louis hospital of the same disease, which clogs the lungs with mucus and forces patients to struggle to breathe. The median survival age is about 40.

The couple married in 2011, and became widely known as a real-life version of the ill-fated young lovers in the Hollywood drama  “The Fault in Our Stars.”  Dalton Prager moved back to suburban St. Louis after a 2014 lung transplant so his parents could care for him. They were last together for their fifth anniversary in July, and until his death last weekend, Dalton had hoped to see his wife one last time before she passed away.

In a Facebook post on Thursday, Katie’s mother Debbie mourned her death.

“My Katie is one of kind, she loved her family, so crazy about her brother Jake, and her many friends,” she wrote. “She never met a stranger, she could turn a dire situation into a moment of fun and laughter. Early this morning, she gained her wish of being at home, in her bed, surrounded by her mom, dad, brother and her dogs, dying peacefully, away from the hospital, tubes, IVs. I know Dalton was waiting with open arms, as well as both her grandmother’s and a host of family and friends that have gone before her.”

9524 days ago, I had the pleasure of meeting a person that would not only change my life but also touch and inspire...

Posted by Dalton and Katie Prager's Transplant Page on Thursday, September 22, 2016

Katie received a lung transplant last year, but later developed lymphoma and went into hospice care in Flemingsburg, writing recently on a fundraising page for her medical and funeral expenses that “I get to spend the rest of my time surrounded by people and things that make me happy.”

The top of her wish list, a visit from her husband, never happened.

Last Saturday, Katie Prager’s family went ahead with an early Christmas celebration for her. Dalton’s death was too hard for her to discuss, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported.

“I’ll see him soon,” she said.