Baby dies from meningitis, possibly from unvaccinated person, health officials say

Thursday, July 12, 2018
Virginia baby dies from meningitis
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A baby in Virginia has died from meningitis, just hours after showing his first symptoms

CHESTERFIELD, Virginia -- A family is urging everyone to stay up to date on vaccinations after losing their infant son to meningitis.

Four-month-old Killy Schultz died June 30, about 24 hours after developing a rash and spiking a fever on his way home from day care.

"He had just eaten his bottle for the afternoon. He was a little warm but we figured it was a warm day so get him home and let him cool off," said Killy's mother Alex Dempsey told WTVR-TV.

They gave him some Tylenol and when that didn't work they decided to get him checked out at the emergency room at St. Mary's Hospital.

Several tests later, and just two days after Killy had received his 4-month-old vaccinations, Dempsey and her fiancé Gabriel Schultz were informed that their baby had most likely contracted meningitis, an inflammation of the protective membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord.

"The moment they said meningitis I knew there was a really strong possibility that we were going to lose him," explained Dempsey. "They told us we were going to hit the window if he was going to make it or not but being he was only four months old he didn't really have an immune system to help us with that."

"Just out of the blue his heart rate dropped, and they started to do CPR and after 10 minutes of CPR you don't come back from that, so we had to tell them to stop," said Dempsey. "After 10 minutes of CPR grown adults don't come back from that, he was brain dead."

Twenty-four hours after Killy's first symptom he took his last breath.

"He was so swollen and purple, and it really didn't look like him anymore, but I still hold him to tell him how beautiful he was, and he was far more than I ever deserved to have, and I told him how hard he had fought, and that we were so proud of him," she said.

Dempsey says health officials believe Killy contracted the disease from an unvaccinated person.

'If anything comes out of this, we want people to be aware that vaccinations can prevent things like this. He was just a baby, so he really didn't have much of a chance," Dempsey said.