A family is inconsolable after the loss of an 11-year-old boy who died after suffering a sudden medical emergency and collapsing in his Montgomery County classroom Monday.
The boy, William Edilzer Cabrera Lozano, was in the fifth grade. After he collapsed, he was transported to a medical center where he died, officials said.
“That’s my son William… I love him so much. I don’t know how to live without him,” his mother, Santos Mercedes Cabrera Lozano, said. “I’m alone, I’m a single mother.”
According to Cabrera Lozano, William took the bus to Farmland Elementary in Rockville, Maryland, on Monday morning like he did every day. But shortly after arriving to class, William felt sick.
He was looked at by the school nurse, who immediately called 911. Emergency personnel treated William at the scene for some time before taking him to a hospital, Montgomery County Public Schools said.
His mother said school officials told her: “‘You should come see William because he’s sick… They already took him to the hospital.’”
“When I asked them what happened, they said he was vomiting blood and that he fainted,” she said.
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Cabrera Lozano said her son had been complaining of pain in his chest and throat for nearly a month.
“He would say to me, ‘Mami, it hurts here.’ I don’t know if it was his heart. ‘It hurts here,’ he’d say to me. But since he wasn’t born here, I didn’t have money to take him to the hospital, since people say it costs so much here,” she said.
William's shocked relatives are trying to wrap their heads around what could have led to his death.
“This child still had life ahead of him. It’s not fair,” Maria Vicente, William’s cousin, said. “They still haven’t told us exactly what happened.”
MCPS said they could not comment on a student’s medical history.
The school’s principal addressed the child’s death in a letter to parents and school representatives.
The Baltimore medical examiner's office will determine William’s cause of death.
The Cabrera Lozano family currently lives in a county shelter. They want to send William’s remains to Guatemala, where he was born, and have opened a GoFundMe page to raise funds.
In Montgomery County, there are affordable health resources available to families regardless of their immigration status. They include:
Mary’s Center in Silver Spring
- 344 University Blvd W, Silver Spring, MD 2090
- (844) 796-2797
Proyecto Salud Clinic
- 11002 Veirs Mill Road, Suite 700, Wheaton, MD 20902