Neefer Sews, Crochets, Crafts, Swims, and Blathers about Kids

Acorns to Oaktrees

October 10th, 2014 at 11:46 am

SUDC Statement for Diane Feinstein

Please, help us pass S. 669 Sudden Unexpected Death Data Enhancement and Awareness Act. It provides for data gathering and data storage, and it provides death scene protocol. If we are unable to gather and store this data, we will never understand why these children are dying.

Diego’s autopsy report gave the cause of death as “undetermined”. It’s not so much that I want to know how or why Diego had to die before he turned 3. I want to know why he died so that we can prevent this from happening to other children. My nephew, Diego (January 2006 – December 2008), was a bright, beautiful boy. I miss him so much.

The death scene protocol part is important for two reasons. First, there is the data gathering for research, but there is also the manner in which the family is treated. Diego died in Alameda, and the Alameda police officers allowed Diego’s grandparents, his parents, and his sister to remain in the house while they conducted the initial interviews and scene investigation. They also allowed me to enter the house. When the Sheriff’s office arrived to take Diego’s body away, they allowed Diego’s parents & grandparents to hold him one last time. I am very grateful to the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office and the Alameda police for their compassion and allowing us to say good-bye like that.

A couple of years after Diego died, a girl in Livermore died from SUDC. That family was not treated with similar compassion. They were locked out of their house which was surrounded by crime scene tape. They were not allowed to hold the girl’s body one last time before she was taken away for autopsy. The death scene protocol addresses this issue and provides guidance that fits with my experience in Alameda.

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