3-Month-Old's First Day at Day Care Ends in Tragedy

day care

A 3-month-old baby died napping at an unlicensed day care center in New York. And just when you think this story can't get any more heartbreaking, this was allegedly the first day the mom had left him there to return to work.


While the cause of the baby's death is currently unknown, here's what we do know so far from police: The mom, Amber Towndrow, had dropped her son Karl at SoHo Child Care that morning. Around 10:30, the day care owner, Maryellen Strautmanis, fed Karl a bottle of milk left by the mother.

Karl was put down for a nap around 11:45 a.m., and although fussy, he went quiet in 10 minutes. Only when Strautmanis checked him around 12:10 p.m., she saw his lips were blue. When she couldn't wake him, she attempted CPR, but she wasn't trained in this procedure.

Karl was rushed to the hospital, but didn't make it.

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Mom Amber and her husband, Lee, released a statement through a friend, saying, "Karl's parents appreciate the kind words and condolences they have received. He was full of love and was treasured by all that met him. At this time, his parents ask for privacy as they grieve his short, wonderful life."

While no charges have been filed against SoHo Child Care, an investigation is underway. At the time of Karl's death, 14 other kids were at this unlicensed facility, in business since 2001.

My heart just bleeds for Karl's poor parents! And the fact that it was his first day at day care just kills me. I recall how hard it was to drop off my 1 1/2 year old at day care that first day; if anything had happened to her it would have been the worst day of my entire life.

And while it doesn't sound like the day care workers did anything to cause this horrible tragedy, the fact that they were unlicensed and did not know CPR is a terrible shame.

Maybe the take-home lesson if there's any for parents is this: While you can't remain by your baby's side nonstop, you can do things to keep him safe even when you're not around. For one, you can make sure your day care is licensed and that someone there knows CPR. Asking this small question could save your baby's life -- or at least give you a little more peace of mind when you drop him off every day.


Image via Joseph Sohm/shutterstock

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