While protecting and serving our community, a couple loses their daughter.
DETROIT, MI — Michigan lost its youngest life to COVID-19 Sunday: 5-year-old Skylar Herbert. She’s the daughter of a local firefighter and Detroit police officer.
Skylar complained to her parents of a headache, which is not the typical symptom associated with the coronavirus.
Ebbie and LaVondria Herbert took their daughter to see her pediatrician on March 23 after she complained of the headaches, according to reports. She tested positive for strep throat and was sent home with medication and instructions to rest.
But her condition did not improve.
“We called the doctor back and they told us that it takes the medication 48 hours to kick in and to give it some time,” LaVondria Herbert told the Detroit News. “But because she was crying so bad, I told my husband we needed to take her to emergency because I just didn’t know.”
Skylar was admitted to Beaumont Royal Oak on March 29 where she was tested for COVID-19. The positive result came in the next day, but the child was discharged a day after that.
Six hours later, she was back in the ER.
“We went back to emergency at Beaumont’s Farmington campus because I noticed my husband was coughing and having some shortness of breath,” LaVondria said. “Me and Skylar waited in the car but out of nowhere, Skylar began complaining of her head hurting and then she just threw up.”
That day Skylar had a 100-degree fever and a seizure. She was transferred back to Beaumont’s Royal Oak campus where it was discovered that she had developed a rare form of meningitis and had brain swelling. Doctors in the pediatric ICU began treating Skylar and she showed signs of improvement. Unfortunately, it was short-lived.
“She was in and out as far as sleeping, LaVondria told the News. “They just cut out a small hole in the front of her head and stuck a tube in it so fluid could drain.”
Skylar was put on a ventilator the following day. Just two weeks later, she was removed from life support and died.
“We decided to take her off the ventilator today because her improvement had stopped, the doctors told that is was possible she was brain dead, and we basically just knew she wasn’t coming back to us,” Skylar’s mother said on Sunday.
Beaumont issued a statement on Sunday saying, “The loss of a child, at any time, is a tragedy. We are heartbroken that COVID-19 has taken the life of a child. We extend our deepest sympathy to Skylar’s family and all others who have lost a loved one to this virus.”
Before Skylar, Michigan’s youngest victim was 20. By Sunday, Michigan reported 2,391 coronavirus-related deaths and 31,424 cases in the state.