Family says child with dairy allergy died after school gave him grilled cheese

NEW YORK (AP/WSVN) — Authorities have closed a New York City pre-school after a 3-year-old boy died from what his family says was an allergic reaction after being fed a grilled cheese sandwich.

A GoFundMe page set up by the family of 3-year-old Elijah Silvera says he went into anaphylactic shock Nov. 3 at the Seventh Avenue Center for Family Services in Manhattan. The family says the toddler had a severe allergy to dairy but was given a grilled cheese sandwich by an adult at the pre-K, even though facility staff knew of and documented the child’s allergy.

Relatives say he was taken to Harlem Hospital, where he died.

The family said they would like have an independent autopsy to help find out what exactly led to Elijah’s death.

“We want to find out exactly where, if any, breakdowns may have occurred at either the school or the hospital,” they wrote on the GoFundMe page.

City health officials ordered the pre-kindergarten school closed on Wednesday for failing to follow its written safety plan and failing to adequately supervise a child. Agency officials say they’re investigating the boy’s death.

“There is nothing more important than the safety of our children and we are deeply saddened by this tragedy,” officials said in a statement. “We will get to the bottom of what happened here. In the meantime, we’re closing the Center for Family Services and continuing to aggressively investigate what happened and whether the facility could have done something differently to prevent this tragedy.”

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