Baby Dies at Daycare During His First Week & His Mom Is Demanding Change

GoFundMe
Baby Carter Funeral Fund/GoFundMe

Michael Carter Donnell had only been in daycare less than a week before he lost his life. The 7-month-old, who went by Carter, suddenly died on Monday and, although his distraught mom can't be certain, Gabriella Garcia thinks she knows exactly what happened to her son: he choked while on his stomach and nobody saw it.

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Gabriella tells My San Antonio that she had just warned employees at Our Little Hopes and Dreams Christian Learning Center that her baby doesn't like being on his stomach and has started rolling. Only days later, she received the devastating call that her child was unresponsive and she needed to get there now.

Carter
Gabriella Aindriu Carter/Facebook

By the time she arrived to at the Texas facility, paramedics were already there and working on Carter. "Is he warm?" she said she recalled asking. "Is he breathing?" The answer to both questions was no.

"I was pleading to God. I said 'Please. I thought he was okay. They were doing it for him, they were breathing for him," she said.

Carter was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead. Gabriella was then allowed to cradle her baby boy for three hours before saying her final goodbye. "I was with him until 5 p.m., holding him and crying with him and loving him and telling him how much I wanted him with me," she said. "He didn't last five days at that daycare."

Carter
Baby Carter Funeral Fund/GoFundMe

According to Gabriella, first responders initially found Carter on his stomach in his crib, with vomit and blood on the sheets. Now, she wants to make sure that nothing like this happens to another child by advocating for a new law that would require cameras inside rooms at daycares.

"I want the teachers to be alert because my 4-year-old, he can speak for himself. He tells me everything. Carter, he couldn't," Gabriella said. "I'm yelling for him right now because he couldn't do it."

Gabriella tells CafeMom that not only would video have captured exactly what happened but it would also act as a safety net for little ones who are too young to tell their parents when something bad is going on. At first she didn't want to speak out about her family's loss, but as she mourns her son's death, she now hopes that it helps raise awareness.

"I would like parents to know, do not put your kids in daycare, at least until they are old enough to tell you about their day," she says. "Please stick with your gut feeling. If it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it."

As they await the medical examiner's report on Carter's cause of death, police are investigating the daycare. 

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