Stories from Visitors
Sister of Laura, died of meningococcal disease | Maryland
My sister, Laura, was a freshman at the University of Vermont when she contracted meningitis. She was away at school for just a few weeks. She hadn’t been feeling well, and we all thought she was coming down with the flu. I was a senior in college when I got the phone call on an early Friday morning that Laura was very sick and that they were getting on the first flight up to Burlington to see what was going on. Of course I went with them. When we got to the hospital she was in a coma. She was receiving a lot of antibiotics but they weren’t working. Her internal organs shut down one by one. When her heart started to fail the doctors tried a pacemaker but by then it was too late. Laura died on Saturday, October 11, 1986. She was 18 years old. Our family and… read more
Parent of Josh, meningococcal disease survivor | Iowa
I’m a mom to 16 year old Eric, who was diagnosed with Bacterial Meningitis on March 20,2008. All the symptoms he was showing were the same as the FLU. On the night of March 19th he complained of a Headache and the chills. My husband gave him some Ibuprofen and told him to get some rest. The next morning he was still complaining of a headache, so we decided he should stay home from school. We did all we could to relieve the pain and I decided to call Ask-A-Nurse, she stated that without seeing him she could not really tell what was wrong, it could be the flu but he should come in to be seen. After I hung up he started vomiting and had the diarrhea, the vomit was the brightest flourescent green that I have ever seen. Eric said he wanted to lie down for a while… read more
Friend of Eric, died of meningococcal disease | Missouri
My friend Eric got meningitis a few years back. He was only 17. He was very well known throughout the town, as his mom owns the local skate shop. He was friends with everyone and his death was very tragic and devastating.
Parent of a meningococcal disease survivor | United Kingdom
My son developed meningitis when was 7 months old. He spent 84 days in hospital, and it was terrifying. He had his right foot amputated and has suffered kidney damage as a result. He is on medication, which will be for life, and is now doing well. We have a long road ahead of us and with my husband and family we will eventually get there!
Parent of a meningococcal disease victim | Montana
On 10/31/07 my 14 month old son died of meningitis. A couple of days before he died, he was great running around, laughing. He was so full of life. Sunday he would not stay awake for very long. He would get up for a little bit, but not for very long. Monday, he wouldn’t eat. His eyes kind of looked weird and his color wasn’t right. I took him to the ER Monday evening. I was there for about 3 hours before they saw him. So, it was about 9:00 pm before we got to see a doctor. They sent him home with the flu…. I was thinking thank goodness it is only the flu. Well, it wasn’t the flu. He died about 12 hours later. The worst day of my life. I wish there was a way doctors had to check for meningitis every time a child went to… read more
Meningococcal disease survivor | Georgia
My name is Danielle and I am 23 years old, and I am a survivor of bacterial meningococcal meningitis. When I was only 2 years old, I contracted this horrible disease while traveling out of state. My parents said for days I ran a fever of close to 106 degrees, but hospitals continued to send me home with them because they could not figure out what was wrong with me. Finally, one doctor, and if not for him I probably would not be here, made the decision to do a spinal tap and discovered that I was highly contaminated with this serious disease. After my parents were told that I had a 10% chance of survival, I was life-flighted to a children’s hospital that could help me. Immediately I was placed on IV antibiotics which caused me to fall into a coma. I was in a coma for 3 months,… read more
Parent of Ryan, meningococcal disease survivor | Ohio
My son Ryan was a freshman on a baseball scholarship at the University of Akron when I received a call from his roommate that Ryan was very sick with a rash all over his body. Since I, like so many other parents, thought it was the flu I told his friend to just get him to the hospital. It wasn’t until I arrived at the hospital did I hear the term meningococcemia. Luckily for Ryan the diagnosis and treatment in the ER and I.C.U. came quickly and he survived. I testified in 2004 to help get our state’s Meningitis Awareness Bill passed because no young person should suffer or die from this disease. Before Ryan left for college, we were told how much college would cost however, I didn’t realize it could have almost cost me my son’s life.
Meningococcal disease survivor | Wisconsin
My name is Jaylene and I survived Meningoccal Meningitis. The day was August 25, 2005 and I had just got off from a long day at work. I was driving home and my back hurt, but I didn’t think anything of it. By the time I got home my head and neck hurt as well. I called my mom and told her about it; she told me to take some pain pills and go to sleep. I had been under a significant amount of stress and we thought it was just that. I woke up about 3 hours later and my legs hurt so I called my mom and I told her. She said that I should go to the hospital, and I refused, because I didn’t have Health Insurance. I went back to bed and woke up at about 1:00 am, and I couldn’t move my body. I called… read more
Parent of a meningococcal disease survivor | Canada
My daughter awoke on night with a fever of 104.5. At only 4 months of age, I became fearful of her lethargy and took her to a hospital. Within just a few hours her neck was very stiff and she was going into respiratory failure. She was started on antibiotics but it was not for 4 more hours that the first light purple spots appeared on her forehead. In the next 24 hours, she had turned into a swollen, dark purple baby from head to toe. She was on a breathing tube, and arterial lines as well as many iv pumps were keeping her alive. She suffered 3rd degree tissue damage on her legs and 2nd degree damage to parts of her arms but by the grace of God- and medicine- she did not require any amputations. Today my daughter is an active 8 year old girl. However, her illness… read more
Parent of Josh, a meningococcal disease survivor | California
My son was diagnosed with meningococcal meningitis in 1988 when he was 2 yrs old. The night before he was diagnosed we called the doctor to let him know that my son had a fever of 104; we were told to bring him to the office in the morning. When we saw the doctor in the morning, we were sent home with a diagnosis of high fever flu. No medications were sent home. By the afternoon, Josh’s blood vessels were bursting, he had negative blood pressure and he was in shock. Thank God for the head physician at Sutter Memorial Hospital and the other doctors and nurses for saving my child. He had a 20% chance to live and he did. He was in intensive care for 2 weeks and in the hospital for 5. He had to go through Physical Therapy and wear leggings and only has a few… read more