Local News

Meningococcal Disease Claims the Life of a Premature Baby, Compelling Parents to Warn Others

In a heart-wrenching turn of events, Leigh and Justin Khoo, devastated by the loss of their baby boy shortly after his first birthday, issue a desperate plea to fellow parents. They aim to raise awareness of the severe and often fatal meningococcal disease.

Their son, Owen, born prematurely at 29 weeks and weighing a mere 1.44kg, faced an uphill battle. Afflicted by retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), he was blind from birth. Despite their unwavering love and support, Owen succumbed to meningococcal after just four days in the hospital.

According to the Daily Mail, the fathers stress the importance of recognizing symptoms such as high fever, fatigue, rapid breathing, vomiting, cold extremities, and a dark purple rash. Shockingly, the rash may not always manifest, as was the case with Owen. They urge parents to trust their instincts, seek professional assistance when in doubt, and fiercely advocate for their children.

Quoting the fathers, ‘We want parents to know that this disease can strike even the strongest of fighters. We must be vigilant.’ In a bid to generate greater awareness of meningococcal and to expand their family in memory of Owen, they have initiated a GoFundMe campaign. The funds raised will support their mission to secure a surrogate who can provide their late son with a sibling.

Driven by love and a desire to honor Owen’s legacy, the Khoo family hopes that by sharing their heartbreaking story, they can shed light on both meningococcal and the plight of those affected by ROP-induced blindness.”

Back to top button