THE parents of a teenager who died after contracting a mystery illness admit they are struggling to make sense of his tragic death.
But Carl Eriksson’s parents, David and Elaine, say they have have been “overwhelmed” by the flood of tributes and sympathy cards they have received from well-wishers and the youngster’s many friends.
Tragic Carl passed away at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital on December 27 after falling ill with tonsilitis-like symptoms on Christmas Day.
His parents said: “The doctors are still baffled about what happened to Carl. But we need to get to the bottom it. It’s very hard to accept.
“Carl had opened one present on Christmas Eve as normal – we’d got him some new pyjamas – and although he felt unwell on Christmas morning he came down and opened his other presents. There was no sign anything was seriously wrong.
“Later on we gave him some paracetamol and antibiotics and sent him up to bed.
“We felt sorry for him because it was Christmas Day but told him he would feel better on Boxing Day and we could celebrate then instead.
“But his brother heard a bump during the night – at about 5am – and Carl had collapsed in the bathroom. We called for an ambulance but it all just unfolded from there.
“When we knew what the outcome would be for Carl we tried to see if any of his organs could be donated because we knew that was something he would have liked. If there’s anything he could have done to help other people he would have.”
Hard-working Carl had received glowing reports from teachers at St Cuthbert’s in his native Sutton less than a fortnight earlier.
An avid X Box gamer, he was also desperate to visit New York and dreamt of living in the US and working as a games designer.
Carl’s funeral was held at St Anne and Blessed Dominic RC Church last Thursday (January 10), with school pals and old friends from cubs and scouts among the scores of mourners.
His parents are now set to split funeral donations between Whiston and Alder Hey Hospitals, saying they “wouldn’t have had any hope without them”.
They added: “Carl’s Facebook wall is full of lovely messages, which has given us so much comfort – it has been a massive help. Nobody has a bad word to say about Carl and it’s nice to know there is so much support out there.
“The house feels very quiet without him. He was really funny, was always pulling funny faces and loved spending time with his little brother Aaron, four, and our Yorkshire terrier Louie. But he was very sensitive too. We’re so proud of him.
“One lad from his school is even organising a fund-raising run in Carl’s memory for March 22 – which would have been his 14th birthday. It’s a lovely idea.”