Thanks giving is supposed to be when people celebrate and give thanks for what they have. Family and friends get together for a meal, which traditionally include various foods including roast turkey, stuffing, vegetables, dessert etc.
Before celebrating the holiday, the Debbs family decided to order a thanks giving dinner basket. They didn’t want to go through the hustle of cooking and running out of time to celebrate. The food basket had so many different tasty treats including a cake.
The cake was put aside on the corner of the counterbecause it was meant for dessert. No one else paid attention to it except Oakley.
The 12 year old boy who was asthmatic and mildly allergic to peanuts and tree nuts was secretly admiring the care from a far. He went closer and after inspecting the cake for no nuts, he assumed the cake was okay for him so he cut a piece for himself. A few minutes later he started having an allergic reaction. He went to his mother, Merril, and explained how he felt.
The two went to look at the ingredients list of the cake and found out that Walnuts was one of the main ingredients. Merrill hurriedly administered first aid to the son. He was given Benadryl for the rush on his face.
The reaction went away as fast as it came and so, she sent him out to play with his cousins. When it was time for bed, Oakley went back to the mother and told her he was getting sick again. That’s when the chaos began.
Merrill called the 9-1-1 and explained whatever was going on with the son. This time the reaction was far worse than the first time.
“He started throwing up and from there it was a tornado of issues. We called 911. By the time the ambulance got there – about 10 minutes later- he was blue.”
The medical team gave him two shots of epinephrine (the main drug in EpiPens) but it was too late. Four days later after battling for his life, Oakley was pronounced dead.
Dr. Ruchi Gupta, an associate professor of pediatrics at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine and director of the Food Allergies Outcomes Program at Northwestern, told TODAY that delayed allergic reaction like Oakley’s is a mystifying subject.
“We do not know enough about delayed reactions like these that seem to get better but then progress rapidly to death. That is why it is so critical to know how to identify a reaction and when and how to us epinephrine,”
The Debbs though devastated for losing their son humbly accepted Oakley’s passing and wrote positive messages from Oakley in heaven.
“’Love, love and more love. You are all so beautiful. Thank you, everyone, for being with me, especially during this time. I appreciate how strong you have been for me. No one could have done anything else Wednesday night. No one is to blame. If you think you are… DON’T. Don’t PLEASE!
Thank you for everyone wanting to help me. Having a family so thoughtful and caring who loves to laugh makes me the happiest boy. Support each other with determined hearts. Be there to support or to be held. It is the way to get through this time. I am grateful to be part of this family. I am blessed by the grace of God to be in it…
Be cheerful happy and enthusiastic. Show your courage, be at peace. Love your life and live it. That is the best thing you can do for me.
Look for me in the rainbow I will always be there.'”
May his soul rest in peace! The world shall surely miss him.
Watch a little girl administer her EpiPen while having an anaphylactic response to tree nuts below. Everyone should know how to use this life-saving medicine.