Just so sad. This little man is now dead because he ate a sandwich at school. Tragic.
Elijah Silvera 3, had severe food allergies, including a dairy allergy, which turned out to be deadly. Reportedly, when a pre-school cafeteria worker at the toddler's school in Manhattan fed him a grilled cheese sandwich, Elijah's poor little body had an allergic reaction, which allegedly killed him.
Elijah's parents, Thomas and Dina Silvera, said the school knew about Elijah's extreme allergies, which included peanuts and berries, because his food restrictions were on file. According to People, Elijah's father said: “Something so simple could have been avoided if they would have just followed — and paid attention to my son’s needs.”
Instead of calling 911, the employees at the Seventh Avenue Center for Family Services pre-kindergarten center called Elijah's parents when he went into anaphylactic shock. His mother rushed him to Pediatric Emergency at Harlem Hospital where he was pronounced dead. When Thomas got the call from his wife that Elijah was in the hospital he rushed over while praying. “I kept praying and praying and praying and was like, ‘This cannot happen,’ ” he said. “My wife comes out and I think everything’s okay because she has — her face seemed normal. But as I got closer, she fell to the floor.”
Seventh Avenue Center for Family Services in Manhattan is currently shut down and under investigation by The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. According to People Magazine, a spokesperson for the department released a statement explaining that the investigation was underway for “failing to follow its written safety plan and failing to adequately supervise a child." The statement continues that: “There is nothing more important than the safety of our children and we are deeply saddened by this tragedy. We will get to the bottom of what happened here.” However, the New York Police Department told People they do not expect to launch a criminal investigation.
Due to Elijah's many allergies, his parents made sure an emergency bag filled with medications accompanied Elijah in the event that he had an allergic reaction. His father told ABC News, “He was that kid that we had to watch over very seriously. We carry this emergency pack that will have Benadryl, that will have Tylenol, that will have his EpiPen.”
Although he and his wife are devastated by the loss of their son, Thomas Silvera said: “I’m pissed off that this had to happen to my son, but the next thing I don’t want is it to happen to somebody else’s son or daughter.”
Unfortunately, this story is a cautionary tale. Parents be advised, make sure if your child has allergies or medical issues that their school knows the plan of action to take in case of an emergency. This could be the difference between life and death. #RIPElijah