St. Louis (KSDK) -- The National Weather Service now says the last 12 months were the hottest ever recorded.
And while the brutal heat wave here has snapped, the deadly consequences are just coming to light. We've learned of 7 new cases of heat related deaths that occurred across the city. Most of the victims were in their 70's and 80's. And a total of ten people have died over the ten day heat wave.
One was 8 year old Altamesa Dobson. Born with a condition known as CMV, she needed a nurse seven days a week. She slept in the only room without air conditioning in her family's apartment at 3105 Franklin off North Grand Boulevard because her family says it was the only room that could hold her hospital bed.
Altamesa's family kept her near the air conditioner during the day. But health officials say, along with her health problems, that wasn't enough to protect her from the heat.
"I love my granddaughter," says Pamela Murray. "And I truly, truly miss her. But I know she's okay, and she's not suffering anymore."
Murray said doctors told the family when Altamesa was born she would not't live past 3 years old. They believe with another air conditioner she could have continued to beat the odds.
The city's Health Department isn't counting on this being the last heat wave of the summer. Director Pam Walker says the department is working on a Severe Weather Program to try and educate people about having a severe heat plan, like they might for other severe weather situations.
For perspective, Walker says St. Louis saw a similar stretch of triple digit temperatures in 1980 when 153 people died over 14 days. Still, says Walker, "We're reviewing everything we're doing and we want to get better because one death is too many. A heat death is preventable."