An eighth-grader from Missouri has died from coronavirus complications, his family says. The data show that he is the first person in the state under the age of 18 to die from the virus.
Peyton Baumgarth, a 13 year old student at Washington Middle School, died over the weekend after contracting COVID-19, the school district said in a letter to parents, KMOV reported.
He last attended school on Thursday, October 22, and officials were informed on October 26 that he was in quarantine, according to media reports.
Peyton’s family said it was hospitalized after the onset of symptoms but it has never improved, KSDK reported.
State data from Nov. 1 show no deaths for Missourians under 18, making Peyton the first child to die of COVID-19 in the state.
“We extend our sympathy with all our hearts to the family and ask the public to respect their privacy. His family deserves nothing less, “school officials said in a letter, according to KSDK. “The family also asks us all to remember to wear masks, wash our hands frequently, and follow instructions.”
The school district said it would additional counselors available for students when they return to high school on Wednesday, KTVI reported.
Child deaths due to COVID-19 they are not common, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Usually, children infected with the virus have only mild symptoms if they show symptoms.
Children under the age of one and children with underlying health conditions, such as asthma, diabetes or heart disease, are more likely to become seriously ill with the virus, the CDC said.
Some children with COVID-19 develop a rare but severe disease called Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), which causes inflammation of body parts, including vital organs. The exact cause of the disease is unknown, but could be fatal, the CDC said.
About 17,000 children under the age of 17 have tested positive for COVID-19 in Missouri since the onset of the pandemic, state data show.
Five people between the ages of 18 and 24 have died, state data show.
In the week before October 30, Missouri added 15.208 coronavirus cases and 78 deaths, state data show. The state had 188,186 cases confirmed by COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic and 3,301 deaths, data up to October 30 show.
Washington is about 50 miles west of St. Louis.