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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    10.22.16 @ 03:41 PM
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    Family mourns loss of boy, 12, to flu

    The grieving Jamaica Plain mother of a 12-year-old Boston schoolboy officials believe is the state’s first reported child flu death this season said her son lost his permission slip for the flu shot that might have saved his life.

    Tess Pope, 48, wept last night in her home and struggled not to blame herself as she recalled her “absent-minded” son, Hunter, a Boston Latin Academy seventh-grader who died Sunday at Boston Medical Center.

    “I didn’t know until yesterday - he lost the (permission) sheet,” the heartbroken mom told the Herald while being comforted by family and friends in her Wenham Street Victorian.

    While some parents distrust medicine, Pope said she embraced it and would have eagerly encouraged him to have had the school-sponsored flu shot, noting Hunter, his twin sister, Molly, and 15-year-old twin brothers, Connor and Ramsay, were all conceived through in vitro fertilization.

    “The fact that he lived at all is through medicine,” said the distraught mother who runs a French horn manufacturing business with her husband, Ken, 48, out of their home.

    Dr. Al DeMaria, director of infectious diseases for the state Department of Public Health, said that while the agency is still awaiting the final results of blood tests to confirm the cause of death, “by all indications it was related to influenza.”

    Dr. Anita Barry, director of the infectious disease bureau for the Boston Health Commission, said there was no indication that Hunter had any underlying health problems.

    The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said four children nationwide had died from flu through Feb. 7.

    Four Bay State children died from the flu last season, state public health officials said.

    Statewide, an estimated 3,200 people have contracted influenza this season, down from 3,364 at this time last year, according to DeMaria.

    Hunter became feverish Friday, but the popular, book-smart student insisted on going to school to celebrate Valentine’s Day with his pals, his mother said. He was especially eager to show off the “Free Hugs” shirt his mother made for him, Tess Pope added.

    “He wanted love,” she said. “He had a lot of love and he was hungry for love.”

    But the school sent Hunter home early with a 101-degree temperature, she said. Vomiting and still feverish, Hunter complained to his parents of severe body aches and a feeling of burning up the next morning, though his skin was cold to the touch, his mother said.

    At 4 a.m. Saturday, the Popes rushed their son to the emergency room at Boston Medical Center. But despite efforts by doctors to save him, Hunter succumbed to the deadly virus the following morning - a day after his brothers’ 15th birthday.

    Pope tearfully recalled climbing into Hunter’s hospital bed after her son was pronounced dead. “Everyone left,” she said, “and I laid with him in the bed and held him.”
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  2. #2
    Hang 'Em High jetguy5150's Avatar
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    10.21.16 @ 09:31 AM
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    As a parent of a 5 year old I can recall a couple of times where my little guy has had flu symptoms and high fevers and you do the best you can. Until the fever hits a critical point they won't even look at your at most hospitals etc. It is heartbreaking to hear that this boy lost his life to influenza. Very sad that he missed the flu shot that may have helped. Definitely not the most important thing on a 12 year old's mind. The last line in that article is heart wrenching.
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  3. #3
    Eruption Naked Wake's Avatar
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    09.29.16 @ 11:24 AM
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    Man, that sucks.

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk Dave's Dreidel's Avatar
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    10.22.16 @ 08:44 AM
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    I just can't even imagine how you get over that.

    Probably never do.

    And dear Lord I hope I never have to try.
    Taylor Swift is nice to look at. Adele can sing.

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  5. #5
    Baluchitherium loveevhsince79's Avatar
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    10.23.15 @ 03:49 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave's Dreidel View Post
    I just can't even imagine how you get over that.

    Probably never do.

    And dear Lord I hope I never have to try.
    Could not agree with you more.
    Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance.

    Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly.



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