Suzanne’s son Braden was 10-years-old when he lost his life to meningococcal disease. In January 2010, Braden woke up with a headache, fever and pain in his arms and legs. Minutes later, he began to vomit, so thinking her son had the flu, Suzanne kept him home from school. By early afternoon he was too weak to walk, and had become disoriented and confused. Suzanne then noticed a small rash on his ear. Braden was taken to a local hospital and emergency room doctors recognized the rash as a telltale symptom of meningococcemia. They rushed him to isolation where he was placed on antibiotics. Despite doctors’ efforts, Braden went into cardiac arrest and lost his battle to meningococcal disease just 17 hours after the initial onset of symptoms.
“I didn’t know about meningococcal disease before it struck my son,” said Suzanne “I encourage parents to educate themselves about this disease and speak to their children’s healthcare providers about vaccination.”