Tragic grocery store accident takes boy’s life – mother urges others not to make same mistake

Toddlers will put just about anything in their mouths. That’s why we have to watch them closely around any small objects – even edible ones. Nearly anything can become a choking hazard.

But it’s impossible to have your eyes on your child 24/7.

Of course, that’s not making it any easier for Ayyan Umar’s parents to cope with his tragic death.

Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube Source: Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube

It all began with a simple trip to the grocery store in 2017 for the 2-year-old from Detroit and his mom Emma Carver.

The boy was sitting in the shopping cart while his mom was picking out cheese in the dairy section. Such a simple moment that happens thousands of times a day around the country.

What Carver didn’t know is that Ayyan had been putting grapes from the cart in his mouth while she shopped. Again, a pretty common occurrence, but this time it had a tragic consequence.

Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube Source: Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube

Carver was horrified to hear her son choking in his seat. She dropped the cheese she was shopping for and rushed to help him. And like most parents she did the one thing you shouldn’t do when someone has food lodged in their throats – she patted him on the back.

That’s a common first instinct, but if someone is managing to cough (that is, making choking sounds), patting their backs could dislodge whatever they’re choking on in the wrong direction, driving it deeper into their airway.

Of course, mom’s not to blame. No one is, really. But she spoke out shortly after the incident to plead with all parents to learn first aid techniques such as CPR and the Heimlich maneuver.

Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube Source: Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube

Other shoppers tried to help but no one knew the Heimlich.

One called 911, while another tried CPR. Emergency responders arrived between 5-7 minutes later and managed to remove one grape, but by then it was too late.

“His lips turned blue, his fingers turned blue,” his mother said in tears.

Ayyan died.

Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube Source: Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube

The second grape was removed from his throat at the hospital but it was far too late.

Who could ever imagine such a thing? Just two grapes, just a moment with your back turned and a sneaky toddler doing what toddlers do.

After the incident, his father was still in shock.

“I was feeling like maybe it was a bad dream, maybe somebody gonna wake me up,” Ayyan’s devastated father Mohammad Umar told WXYZ-TV Detroit. “He sleeps on my chest. I see him everywhere.”

Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube Source: Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube

Unfortunately, choking happens a lot more often than most of us realize in small children – hence all the warnings about small objects.

“Choking is a leading cause of injury and death among children, especially those younger than 4 years of age,” according to the Nationwide Children’s Hospital. “The majority of choking-related incidents among children are associated with food, coins and toys.”

Every 5 days, a child in the U.S. needlessly dies while choking on food.

Doctors warn that some foods that can easily become logged in little throats or lungs, including grapes, popcorn, and nuts. Believe it or not, hot dogs pose the greatest risk and cause more deaths than any other food.

But did you know you’re not supposed to feed a child younger than 4 whole grapes? Many people don’t.

However, in this case, it wouldn’t have mattered – Ayyan wasn’t given the grapes by his mother, he snuck them out of the bag.

Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube Source: Screencap via WXYZ-TV Detroit/YouTube

The parents have now signed up to take First Aid classes.

You can scroll down to see the local news interview with the family who delivered an important warning to parents everywhere.

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

Source: WXYZ-TV Detroit via YouTube, Parents Magazine

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