Galveston, TX

4-Year-Old Texas Girl Died Because of COVID Infection

Tom Handy

In Galveston, not far from Houston, Texas, a young girl became the first death due to the coronavirus. The girl’s mother said she was fine on September 6 but died the next day.

Kali Cook had no preexisting conditions according to her mother Kara Harwood. Her mother said her daughter was fine on Labor Day. Later in the day, she developed a fever and the young girl died in her sleep early the next morning.

A medical examiner said Kali showed signs of COVID. She died within a day of her COVID test. An investigation is going to confirm the exact cause of death.

After the investigation, Kali may be the youngest child to die from the virus in the county.

I just wanted everybody to know that it happened so fast,” Harwood said. “By 2 a.m. [Kali] started to run a fever. My mom came down and asked my fiancee if he could help her take some medicine. We gave her some medicine and by 7 a.m. she was gone.”

Harwood’s family did not receive the vaccine and members of her family came down with COVID shortly after Kali’s death.

I got tested for COVID and became positive. I tried to quarantine myself from them. We have a two-story home. They were upstairs, and I was downstairs,” Harwood told KPRC. “My 5-month-old baby even has it. I’ve taken him to the hospital every night since because I feel like they’re not getting better, and I’m terrified.”

Galveston County Health Officials said this was the first case of a child dying from COIVD.

Galveston County released a joint statement:

An autopsy was conducted today by the Galveston County Medical Examiner’s office on the young child who passed away this week and tested positive for COVID-19.
We will not have the final cause of death until all results come back from today’s autopsy. We will update the public with more information as it becomes available.
Erin Barnhart, M.D. Chief Medical Examiner, Galveston County
Philip Keiser, M.D. Galveston County Local Health Authority

The Delta variant is the predominant cause of COVID cases across the country. Children under the age of 12 are not allowed to receive the COVID vaccine. Galveston medical officials are surprised there was not a larger case of children testing positive

Now we’re seeing our largest group of people with COVID is children under 10. So the fact that we’re getting more and more children under 10 getting COVID, it shouldn’t be surprising that some of them are getting sick. Some of them are getting in the hospital and some dying. So in that way, it’s not a surprise,” Dr. Philip Keiser, Galveston County Local Health Authority, said. “It’s very sad. It’s very sobering. I hope that this will be an opportunity for people to start putting away the anger that they have about COVID and realize that this is serious.”

Galveston County Sheriff’s Department said there was no foul play suspected.

Harwood wishes she would have taken COVID more seriously.

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