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View Full Version : Is there anyone at fault over this 5 year olds death....?



Shwicaz
02-01-2008, 01:14 AM
I read the paper everyday, and sometimes I wonder about people:



Sonja Cobb held the metal paper fastener believed to have choked her son to death and angrily blamed the city of Marlborough yesterday for the loss of the 5-year-old boy.
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"I talked to the mayor; she just left my house," Cobb said as she mourned her son Darnell Cobb. "She's telling me my son ran to the bus driver and the bus driver called the paramedics. . . . He ran. I can't handle that. You don't look at no kid crying and call the paramedics."

Cobb said there should have been someone on the bus who knew first aid, and she vowed to fight to have monitors placed on school buses. A spokeswoman for the bus company said the driver followed all company procedures in summoning medical help.

"I am very angry, because I feel like a monitor should have been on the bus," Cobb said.

In a separate interview last night, Mayor Nancy Stevens said that there have never been monitors on school buses and that there is no way to tell if a monitor could have saved the boy's life.

"Do we know that would have made a difference? I don't know," Stevens said. "All indications we have were that he received immediate attention. I think the response time was less than three minutes."

The bus, heading north on Maple Street, was taking children home after school about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday.

A child sitting next to Darnell Cobb notified the bus driver that there was a problem, Stevens said earlier yesterday during a press conference at the Central Fire Station. The bus driver, the only adult on the bus with about 20 students, "immediately pulled over and radioed in a medical emergency," she said.

Paramedics responded quickly from the fire station on Maple Street, a few hundred yards away, Stevens said.

Stevens called it a "horrible accident" and praised the quick response.

Rescuers rushed the boy to Marlborough Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.

There was no word yesterday from city or school officials on whether the bus driver had the time or training to perform the Heimlich maneuver, a manual procedure used to force an object from a choking victim's trachea. The driver was not identified.

Stevens said, "Obviously, the bus driver is very broken up."

The bus was operated by First Student Inc., a Cincinnati-based company that transports 4 million students across the country each day.

"The driver followed all the correct procedures that he was trained to do," said Nicole Maddock, a First Student spokeswoman. "He pulled over, he called for an ambulance service, and secured the bus for medical personnel. . . . Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of the student who died."

Sonja Cobb also blamed school officials. She said her son should not have had access to the fastener - a small, screw-shaped metal object with two bendable prongs - that is believed to have choked him. "He's only 5," Cobb said. "He should not be left unattended with these things."

Stevens said she could not comment on the fastener because the autopsy is not complete. Yesterday, before the exact cause of death was known, Marlborough parents were anxious for more information.

"I'm scared about it. It could happen to anyone, even my daughter," said Dante Gandolfo, who was waiting to pick up his 9-year-old daughter outside Francis J. Kane Elementary School, where Cobb was a kindergartner.

He said he hopes the school will add adult monitors to the buses as a precaution.

"I'm a little worried about it," said Korrianne Bardsley, the parent of a 5-year-old who is scheduled to attend Kane in the fall. She said the boy's death sounded like a "freak accident," but that she wants to know more about what happened.

Stevens sent a letter to all Kane parents yesterday, informing them of the death and alerting them that grief counselors are available for their children. "We encourage you to speak with your child as you deem appropriate and to call upon the school staff and crisis team for assistance," she wrote.

Parent Chris Kiepert, who has sons in the first and third grades at Kane and was waiting outside yesterday to pick them up, said he would probably not talk to them about the tragedy unless they asked, because he feels they are too young to discuss death. He said he was not at all worried about their safety or that something like this could happen again.

Cobb, speaking by phone, said she hoped her son's death would result in change. "I want mothers like myself to fight the city of Marlborough to have monitors on the bus," she said.

Her son, she said, has three siblings, two brothers ages 16 and 18, and a 2-year-old sister. His father is deceased, she said.

"I hoped for a future for my child," said Cobb, a full-time student at Clark University in Framingham, where she is from. "He was a beautiful kid, a very active kid, a very friendly child. He had his whole life ahead of him. Everyone loved this kid."

A funeral had not been planned yesterday, pending the autopsy, Cobb said.



Now, very sad that the child died. But, is it the bus companies responsibility to make sure that every school bus has monitors on it for younger children...?

Would that have changed anything....? I mean, sometimes we would have parent chaperones/monitors on school trips, but none of them were equipped with emergency training...it was just some kids mom. etc.


As far as blaming the school for the kid having the paper fastener....I think that is just prpostrous. the kid could have just as easily choked on a penny that he found on the street or in his own pocket.


He's a 5 year old, and yes, they do stick things in their mouths. But to say that the school is responsible for his death is a bit of a stretch to me.

I can understand mom being upset and somewhat irrational, but I think she is wrong in this case.

/(. . )/
02-01-2008, 02:31 AM
I don't think it's a good idea to have monitors in school buses.

Do you want the bus driver to be watching the monitor or the road?

Thomas Mauer
02-01-2008, 03:15 AM
The woman's gotta step back for a bit and mourn the loss of her son quietly instead of trying to channel that raw energy elsewhere to have something else to focus on.

Jim T.
02-01-2008, 03:32 AM
My 2 year old doesn't even stick stuff in his mouth anymore, much less my 5 year old. I think the driver did what was supposed to be done. If I were the driver, it's what I would have done.

AutumnHeart
02-01-2008, 04:27 AM
Isn't there a chapter in the Parenting Schoolbook about teaching your five year old child not to eat random objects he finds on the school bus. If a kid is old enough to attend school, he should be old enough not to need constant supervision to make sure isn't devouring stationary supplies.

With that said, even if a monitor had been in place, what would they have done? If they tried to act, and the kid died anyway (or survived, but suffered injuries from efforts to save his life), somebody would get sued anyway.

What happened to the good old days, when I used to get beat up on the bus, and nobody would do a thing about it? Where's that good old fashioned utter disregard?

Brewtown Andy
02-01-2008, 04:30 AM
Not to disregard the death of a 5 year old, but who's going to pay these obviously part timers who are first aid trained to ride school buses?

AutumnHeart
02-01-2008, 04:34 AM
Not to disregard the death of a 5 year old, but who's going to pay these obviously part timers who are first aid trained to ride school buses?

Mr. and Mrs. Childless Q. Taxpayer.

Brewtown Andy
02-01-2008, 04:36 AM
Mr. and Mrs. Childless Q. Taxpayer.Silly me.

greg donovan
02-01-2008, 04:38 AM
I don't think it's a good idea to have monitors in school buses.

Do you want the bus driver to be watching the monitor or the road?

in this case the monitor would be a person not a screen/camera.

however i suppose if the monitor looked like one of the women in the MMMMega thread that could be a distraction.

Ethan Van Sciver
02-01-2008, 04:41 AM
I can't imagine the mother's grief. I'd blame everyone too.

The thing the kid swallowed...god..I have some basic first aid training as a Boy Scout, and I don't know what I would have done. It sounds like a piece of shrapnel. Why did he swallow it??

xyzzy
02-01-2008, 04:43 AM
No, I don't think there's any real liability here. Still, I'm sure she's insane with grief right now. Can't blame her for lashing out.

Gunter
02-01-2008, 04:43 AM
I don't think it's a good idea to have monitors in school buses.

Do you want the bus driver to be watching the monitor or the road?

I think by monitor they were speaking of a seperate person to "monitor" the situation.

At least that's what I got from it.

And why is the first thing most people do when a tragedy strikes is want to blame someone?

Joe Kalicki
02-01-2008, 04:46 AM
No matter what happens, schools always get screwed.

AutumnHeart
02-01-2008, 04:47 AM
And why is the first thing most people do when a tragedy strikes is want to blame someone?

In this instance, no one -- especially not the grieving mother -- wants to entertain the notion that maybe the kid was a victim of Darwinism, not the tragedy of an under-supervised public school bus.

Thomas Mauer
02-01-2008, 04:47 AM
And why is the first thing most people do when a tragedy strikes is want to blame someone?

To not have to deal with the tragedy itself and focus on a distraction.

Gunter
02-01-2008, 04:48 AM
To not have to deal with the tragedy itself and focus on a distraction.

Yeah, you do have a point.

Ethan Van Sciver
02-01-2008, 04:57 AM
In this instance, no one -- especially not the grieving mother -- wants to entertain the notion that maybe the kid was a victim of Darwinism, not the tragedy of an under-supervised public school bus.

That's why they should teach Intelligent Design on school buses.

AutumnHeart
02-01-2008, 04:59 AM
That's why they should teach Intelligent Design on school buses.

Or have signs posted everywhere that say "DON'T PUT IT IN YOUR MOUTH."

Which could also ultimately be helpful with promiscuous high school students. Just add a tagline, "OR ANYWHERE ELSE."

tim nixon
02-01-2008, 05:00 AM
Mr. and Mrs. Childless Q. Taxpayer.

the people with children will pay, too. i hate it when people without kids think they have no social responsibility to everyone else's kids. the human race is in this together, and without the next generation we are dooooooomed.(granted we are probably doomed anyways, but what the hell...)

on topic, i dont think monitors should be put in, or an extra aid or whatever. shit happens, and it just so happens this week it was to that kid. this is a non-issue 99.9999% of the time.

AutumnHeart
02-01-2008, 05:02 AM
the people with children will pay, too. i hate it when people without kids think they have no social responsibility to everyone else's kids. the human race is in this together, and without the next generation we are dooooooomed.(granted we are probably doomed anyways, but what the hell...)

on topic, i dont think monitors should be put in, or an extra aid or whatever. shit happens, and it just so happens this week it was to that kid. this is a non-issue 99.9999% of the time.

I definitely feel I have a social responsibility to the next generation... I'm happy to contribute towards feeding, housing, and educating them. But within reason. I'm not OK with being a walking wallet for whatever people WITH children demand that their kids absolutely must have.

Joe Kalicki
02-01-2008, 05:04 AM
I don't want to support the next generation if they think it's a good idea to swallow metal objects.

Brewtown Andy
02-01-2008, 06:02 AM
I don't want to support the next generation if they think it's a good idea to swallow metal objects.Win.

TheGibson
02-01-2008, 06:09 AM
I just can't get over the link on the page that says: "more stories like this"


Ugh.

/(. . )/
02-01-2008, 06:32 AM
I think by monitor they were speaking of a seperate person to "monitor" the situation.

At least that's what I got from it.

And why is the first thing most people do when a tragedy strikes is want to blame someone?

english.. losing grasp..