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11-year-old girl dies from mysterious allergic reaction on Hawaii trip

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An 11-year-old girl from California has died following an allergic reaction she suffered while on vacation in Hawaii.

According to FOX40 in central California, the girl, whose name is Paige, was on a trip in Hawaii over Thanksgiving when an unknown allergic reaction put her in a coma..

The girl had a history of food and environmental allergies, but when she arrived in Honolulu for Thanksgiving, she seemed fine at first, the report said.

But after she went swimming with her sister, Violet, and a friend, Paige soon began complaining that her "nose was burning," the girl's mother, Karin Carpenter, told the station.

Paige suffered throat swelling and difficulty breathing and eventually had to be taken to the hospital. She died while still in Hawaii.

The mother still doesn't know what caused the reaction and eventual death, but was reportedly told anything from volcanic ash to the temperature of the pool could have contributed.

Meanwhile, as the family grieves, the sister has been trying her best to keep the family upbeat.

“Violet has been our ray of sunshine, keeping us eating and just taking care of ourselves,” Carpenter told FOX40.

A GoFundMe site has been set up to support the family. The girl's funeral has been planned for some time next month.


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  • Sarah

    Maybe there was something in her suntan or sunscreen lotion. I say that because she got sick after getting into the pool. Also plants native to southern regions cause allergic reactions that visitors wouldn’t normally be aware of. Plumeria is a main one. Isn’t it in everything and has different stages that maybe wouldnt hurt as a whole but ground up might affect skin differently.

  • Zebra Stripes

    Hawaii is known for warm water bacteria that can be lethal. Perhaps the pool’s chlorine level was too low and some of them got in there.

  • cyber loitering

    My condolences to this family. Question: Does every tragedy end with a go fund me request? I don’t know this families financial situation but if they can afford a trip to Hawaii (asumming it wasn’t a gift) seems this family is doing OK financially. I haven’t checked the go found me page but I hope it has a request to donate funds to a charity in her name.

    • Hank

      Thank you for your condolences. To answer your question Cyber Loitering, I am Paige’s dad and the plane tickets were funded by saving up for quite a long time and we did not need to pay for a hotel because we have family there. We are unsure of how much of the medical expenses will be covered, and just the hospital bill alone is going to be way more than our yearly household income. We appreciate any help but not trying to scam in any way. My family is very thankful for the overwhelming support.

      • Kathleen Coleman

        Dear Hank:
        I am so deeply sorry to hear about your daughter. Know that many, many people all over the world are praying for you and your family, and I understand completely about the untold financial toll of what happened. God bless you and your family.

    • Kelly B.

      I strongly encourage you to read the GoFundMe page set up as it explains just how much of a costly experience was (emotionally and, yes, financially). Also, “Cyber Loitering” might not be the term you’re looking for. Perhaps Cyber Panhandling? Either way, I don’t believe you should be judging this family for asking for help with the medical expenses. I live paycheck to paycheck myself, but that doesn’t mean I can’t save up for a while to go to Florida to see my family while hitting up Disney World. Unexpected expenses can affect any family, medical bills especially. Just because someone was visiting Hawaii doesn’t mean they’re well off. I don’t think they need your judgement, especially at this time.

      • Hank

        Thank you so much Kelly and Kathleen, I appreciate the well wishes and understanding of our situation. We already have a strong suspicion that the insurance company is trying to get out of paying any of the medical bills, so we are bracing ourselves for that burden on top of grieving over our loss. We have been touched by the kindness of our amazing friends, family, and even total strangers so thank you for being a part of that. Hope you have a wonderful holiday season!

  • interrupt31

    Was epipen administered right away at least at the site or at ambulance? We have 2 kids with extreme food allergy as well and we never leave without it even on an errand run plus benadryl. Very sad to hear this.

    • Hank

      Inerrupt31, yes the epi was given to her immediately onsite AND in the ambulance on the way to the hospital but it did not affect her at all. Upon arrival at the hospital, they placed tubes down her throat to help her breathe and that was when her heart stopped. Epi Pens are very important to have but NOT 100% dependable, as we learned.

      • MC

        Dear Hank,
        I am so sorry for your loss, as a parent of an 11 year old and a 6 year old I can’t even begin to imagine what your family is going through.
        My 6 year old also has lots of food and airborne allergies and was diagnosed with Esophogioitus, a condition where allergies react in the throat (he has lots of scars in his throat from reactions that we never knew were happening). We carry Benadryl and Epi pens as well, many of us who have children with severe allergies will carry Paige’s story in our hearts forever.
        Thank you for being forth coming and sharing info on your experience, your willingness to share what happened to Paige may save the lives of many other children. I never imagined a swimming pool could create such a dangerous reaction for children like ours. I
        will ask our allergist if we should test pool water before entering and I will look for other ways to help protect children like ours. My husband has been wanting to save up for a trip to Hawaii but due to cost and our children’s ages I have been putting it off and doing staycations near our home.
        If you are ever in Texas look me up I would love to get to know you and your family.
        My prayers are with you and your family as you continue to search for answers and learn to cope with the loss of your beautiful daughter. May God Bless all of you.
        Sincerely…a mom of 2 in Texas.

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