Bill would require investigations of deaths at daycares

KIRO-TVJanuary 16, 2014 

OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Kyle and Amanda Uphold told lawmakers at a hearing Thursday how their 5-month-old daughter, Eve, died at daycare while sleeping on a mattress with improperly fitted sheets.

The parents say those sheets bundled up around their daughter, and may have contributed to her death. Amanda Uphold, said, "We believe it was preventable. If she was in a safer sleeping environment and if she was monitored like she was supposed to be."

Kyle Uphold told lawmakers he later found out Eve's death was not the first at the day care. "This provider had a previous SIDS death in her care 12 years ago, and had multiple licensing violations related to sleep, safety and supervision," he said. Andy and Barbara Hazzard are the parents whose 6-month-old son, Graham, died at the same daycare 12 years earlier. "It was like a pit of sadness that would open up and swallow me up at any given time," said Andy Hazzard about his son's death.

There was no mandatory death investigatin at the time. The boy's parents say if there was, it might have revealed problems and could have later prevented Eve Uphold's death.

"When I first learned of Eve's death, I felt a tremendous amount of guilt, as though, had we done something more, perhaps her death would have been preventable," said Graham's mother, Barbara Uphold.

Lawmakers also heard from the parents of Jaclyn Frank, who was 18 months old when she died at a day care after getting tangled in a window blind.

Jacklyn's mother, Michele, told lawmakers a state investigation after every day care death would help identify problems and save other parents unimaginable grief. "It breaks your heart forever."

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