Meningitis in your words

Dara Keogh Reale's story

  • Location: England
  • Categories: Bacterial meningitis
  • Age: Toddler 1-3
  • Relationship: Parent
  • Outcome: Bereavement
Dara Keogh Reale

Dara was such a healthy child, he was hardly ever sick.

On the 12 January 2010 we went into town, Dara in the back with his little sister Clara (there were 11 months between them); his older brother, Evan, was at school.

We did our shopping and Dara got a happy meal and ate it all up, we drove home and he was playing all evening. He then had his dinner with his Dad and played some more. At 10pm we put Dara to bed and he fell asleep. At 12 he woke cranky, so I gave him Nurofen (his ear was very red), took him into our bed and he slept away, but was tossing and turning all night, which was nothing new, so we didn't take much notice.

Clara woke around 6am, so I gave her a bottle. Dara then got sick, so his Dad helped him, he sat up and played with his bottle and Tom laid him back down and I went back over to Clara.

"Our lives fell apart and will never be the same. We love and miss Dara so much."

I noticed Dara's breathing was starting to change,  so I called Tom. Dara did a dirty nappy,  so I went to change him, he closed his eyes and I couldn't wake him, so I said I'm ringing the out of hours doctor. We went to him and I saw Dara had a big purple blotch under his ear and pin prick marks on his chest.

We went into the doctor who had NO INTEREST in treating Dara right, so he wrote a letter to A&E and let me drive him myself. I got to the hospital at 8.55. At 9 they ran with Dara into a room and said they suspected meningitis.

From that time on Dara went downhill, he had three cardiac arrests,and his organs were failing. Sadly at 1.30 the same day Dara fell asleep forever - there was no more that could have being done.

Our lives fell apart and will never be the same. We love and miss Dara so much.

The undertaker took Dara and we waited for antibiotics and then drove home. Dara arrived back at 8 that evening,we put his coffin in his cot and kept him at home for two nights.

Dara was buried Friday; a day I hardly remember. We had to have a closed coffin, which made it even harder again.

Dara died of meningitis B and septicaemia, which took him in less than 5 hours. Dara has a Facebook page - Meningitis our son Dara - and is on You Tube -  Little Angel Dara. - for anyone who would like to see more photos of our beautiful boy.........xx