A 19-year old student of the Oakland University, Chandler Swink, dies at the St. Joseph Mercy Oakland hospital where he had driven himself, on developing severe allergies to peanuts he had eaten at a friend’s house.
Swink had visited a friend who entertained him with baked peanut butter cookies. But feeling unwell thereafter, Swink drove himself to the St. Joseph Mercy hospital where medical personnel sighted him unable to leave his car – where he was suffering from anaphylactic shock. He was placed on instant admission but he slipped into a coma that lasted a whole week, until he passed away on Wednesday without regaining consciousness. The cause of death was listed as simultaneous onset of anaphylactic shock and cardiac arrest.
It is not clear if Swink came into direct contact with the peanut ingredients of the baked peanut butter cookies or if he touched someone that had handled the cookies, but he had been diagnosed as being allergic to peanuts since he was two years old. He had received the Huntington Ford Scholarship last year, and this covered four years of school tuition – because he had exceptional passion for his academic major, a GPA of over 3.3, and showed good citizenship. Swink was well-liked by school friends and teachers, and these have set up a fund to cover for his hospital and funeral costs.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns that 4-6% of American children suffer from food allergies that could result in severe side-effects; they therefore implore school authorities to set up food programs that take care of students with allergies, as well as educate handlers on how to respond in case of an allergic response.