Letter to the Editor: I Watched My Daughter Die

Los Alamos

I watched my daughter die.

She died from cancer, not from measles, but I feel compelled to jump in to the vaccination discussion.

She was diagnosed as an infant and because of chemotherapy treatments she was not able to receive vaccinations for a long period of time. There were no outbreaks of nearly eradicated diseases at the time, but we still worried. 

The chemo treatments completely knocked out her white blood cells (the ones that fight off diseases), and had she contracted measles, or the flu, or any number of diseases, she would have landed back in the hospital. And she did, many times. A disease that perhaps an otherwise healthy child can fight off could have been fatal to her.

When you choose to vaccinate, or not to vaccinate, your own children you are making choices for your own reasons, but you are also perhaps impacting the lives of those who are the most medically fragile.

We only got six and a half years with her. I can’t imagine that time cut any shorter because of a disease that is preventable.