NEW YORK CITY (WFLA) – A New York City school was forced to close after a 3-year-old boy died from what the family said was an allergic reaction to being fed a grilled cheese sandwich.
Elijah Silvera went into anaphylactic shock on Nov. 3 and was rushed to a Harlem Hospital, where he died.
Elijah’s family said that his pre-kindergarten school knew that he had a severe allergy to dairy when an adult gave him the grilled cheese. They posted their story on a GoFundMe page that already has more than $20,000 in donations.
“At this moment, it is unclear where responsibility for Elijah’s death will fall, between the pre-K and the hospital itself,” the page read. “We just want justice for Elijah.”
City health officials ordered the pre-K school closed on Wednesday for failing to follow its written safety plan and failing to adequately supervise a child.
Agency officials say they’re investigating the boy’s death.
According to the GoFundMe page, Elijah’s parents and his 5-year-old brother are struggling with coming to terms with his death.
“Our family is only beginning the long and painful process of adjusting to a world that does not include Elijah,” the family wrote. “It is an unimaginable time for everyone who loved Elijah, in particular for his 5-year-old brother Sebastian, who struggles to understand that his brother is truly gone. We dread the upcoming holiday season without our little boy. We are lost.”
The NYC Health Department also released a statement on Wednesday night:
“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. In the meantime, we’re closing the Center for Family Services and continuing to aggressively investigate what happened and whether the facility could have done something differently to prevent this tragedy.”
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