Megan’s Hope

Posted April 22nd, 2012 in Birth Doula in Fresno, Fresno birth, Fresno Birth Doula and tagged , by Kathryn DiPalma

This is such a sad story about precious little Megan.  It’s a story about an accident that could have been prevented. It’s a story about a family that is now mourning the loss of their daughter. Please read it, take action and secure all furniture to the walls. Yes, it will put holes in your walls, but you can fix those.  The hole in your heart will be one that will never heal completely.

Meghan’s Story

Meghan Agnes Beck

October 23, 2001—December 18, 2004

She was the second born of a twin set, her older brother arriving 4 minutes before she was born. She arrived feet first, feisty and ready to make her presence known literally kicking her older brother out of the womb! That was October 23, 2001. One of the happiest days of my life.

That bright-eyed little girl, our beautiful daughter Meghan, died December 18th, 2004 at the age of 3 from injuries sustained as a result of her dresser falling on top of her in the early morning hours while we slept. We presume she was climbing in the drawers. We did not hear the dresser fall, for it fell on top of her. She did not or could not cry. She died within minutes.

Suddenly I was living every parent’s nightmare, I held my dead baby girl in my arms one sunny Saturday morning just a week before Christmas and had to say goodbye. I left her body in the emergency room along with a part of me. My heart shattered. All because of something that could have easily been avoided had we known the dangers. It was the worst day of my life.

Tragically, her death was preventable, for if we had secured her dresser to the wall, she would be with us today. Four dollars and fifteen minutes would have saved her life. Instead of putting a few holes in our walls and furniture, we forever have one in our hearts that will never heal. Walls can be fixed, broken hearts cannot.

We never thought her dresser, a small, heavy, well made and well known top of the line piece, would tip or fall, let alone kill anyone, we were horribly wrong. She has left us, her twin brother, and her older brother all devastated at her loss.

Our home is well childproofed. We had other larger pieces of furniture that were secured to the walls, but not her dresser. We are beside ourselves with grief. I may never forgive myself for not making her room and our home safer. The guilt is overwhelming.

Sadly, Meghan is not the first child to die from falling furniture, but we hope that we can, with your help, prevent this tragedy from happening to another child. Since Meghan’s death, the Consumer Product Safety Commission has revised their information and statistics on injury and death due to furniture tip over.

The CPSC reports that from 2000-2006 there was an estimated 42,700 emergency room visits due to furniture, television, and appliance related tip-overs. 26,000 of those involved furniture, usually a dresser, table, or shelving unit and 15,900 involving a television. Approximately 1500 involved a television on a piece of furniture. There were 96 deaths from furniture tip-over and 87 deaths from television tip-over. 80% of the fatalities were in children under the age of 10 with the ages of 1-3 being the most common age for injury and death. To view the full report click here

Since publishing this Web site, we have heard far too many stories of near misses and similar tragedies and we are astounded at how often furniture or televisions tips or falls onto children causing injury or death, and how unaware of the dangers parents, health care professionals, and furniture stores and manufacturers are. We want to change that.

This is a tragedy that could happen to anyone, anywhere, anytime and death can result in mere minutes. I can assure you no parent who has ever lost a child for any reason expected it would happen to them. We certainly didn’t. Please don’t let it happen to yours or anyone else’s child. Securing your furniture is quick, easy, inexpensive, and the life you save may be your own child’s or someone you love.

Please honor Meggie’s memory and those of her playmates in Heaven and take the time to read the information here and share it with those who have or care for children of any age.

Thank you.

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