5 year-old Ethan Scholes of the U.K. died of meningitis just an hour after he developed a mysterious rash on his body.
The boy first started complaining of a headache on New Years Day in 2011, but his family had no reason to believe that he was seriously ill. His father Stuart Walters, 54, thought the boy had German Measles since he had been fine all day, so he sent him upstairs to go sleep it off.
Late in the evening, however, a rash appeared on the back of Ethan’s neck between his shoulder blades. By then, nothing could be done to help him, and the child was dead within an hour.
“I realised something was wrong when I went upstairs and tried to pick him up,” Walters recounted, according to Daily Mail. “I tried to call an ambulance but because I was panicking I couldn’t dial so I went to my neighbor.”
“The ambulance arrived quickly and when we got to the hospital they tried to revive him using CPR but he was flat lining and they asked if I wanted them to continue but I could see he had already gone,” the grieving father continued. “From the rash appearing to him dying, it all happened within an hour – it was so quick.”
Walters went on to pay tribute to his little boy, who he says was a popular student at Swindon Academy.
“He was a proper five-year-old boy, who didn’t like girls and was running around every chance he got,” Walters said of Ethan. “We used to do everything together and used to just generally mess around and have a laugh. It just seems so unfair, it is a really big loss and leaves a hole in my life.”
Now, the heart-broken father is coming forward with his story in the hopes of raising awareness of this horrid disease.
“I want to raise awareness again of meningitis because there was a big campaign two years ago but it all seems to have died down again. I know all the symptoms to look out for but by the time the signs started showing it was too late.
It’s such a nasty disease and there is so much out there that people don’t know about. I want to raise money for the Meningitis Trust because they rely completely on donations and they are not well known.
If we can do something by raising the awareness for other parents and raising money then it wouldn’t be a total loss and something good would have come from it.”
Our thoughts and prayers are with this family!