updated 3/29/2011 5:42:46 PM ET 2011-03-29T21:42:46

A man who tested positive for salmonella in an outbreak that may be linked to a Rhode Island bakery has died.

Annemarie Beardsworth, a spokeswoman for the state health department, said Tuesday the man died March 23. He was in his 80s and lived in Providence County. The man tested positive for the same strain of salmonella that has now sickened 39 people. Beardsworth says 24 of those people have been hospitalized.

Officials say many of the people ate pastries similar to a doughnut, called zeppoles (ZAY'-puh-luhz), made by DeFusco's Bakery in Johnston. The pastries, which were also sold at other stores around the state, have been recalled. The bakery has voluntarily shut down until further notice.

Beardsworth says officials are investigating whether the man who died ate one of the pastries.

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