December 1993 – December 2008
Written by: Norma Erickson, Vaccines Examiner
From the day Annabelle was born, she was an exceptional child. She had a heart as big as all outdoors. Her family viewed her as a gift. Loving daughter, grand-daughter, friend and confidante to all, it didn’t take long for everyone she touched to feel the same way. Annabelle was indeed a treasure.
Early on, Annabelle showed she was determined to make the world a kinder, gentler place. The first sign was her great love for animals. It was not unusual for her to rescue any stray animal she found. As soon as she was old enough, she helped groom race horses with her grandfather. At only 12 years old, she worked as a volunteer for the SPCA. Benevolence was her nature.
Her kind heart was not reserved for animals. When called upon to be a godmother, this young woman took the job quite seriously. Annabelle had already set out to change the world, one small step at a time.
Annabelle’s life had but one guiding principle, “All that is necessary to achieve, is to believe.” Annabelle believed she would become a veterinary surgeon.
9 December 2008, 15 days after her second shot of Gardasil, that dream ended. Annabelle went to take a bath less than 10 feet from where her family was sitting. 30 minutes later, she was found dead. No cry, no unusual sound, she left the world in silence.
Annabelle lived in Canada, where the parents do not need to be informed when vaccination takes place. Her family had heard the advertisements for Gardasil for two years prior to when she actually received the first shot. They had discussed it and agreed that based on the advertisements, the vaccination would be a good idea.
16 days after Annabelle’s first shot, she suffered from aphasia (the inability to understand spoken or written language), weakness, amnesia, inability to speak and difficulty standing. Not knowing she had received a Gardasil shot, her parents took her to the hospital to find answers.
No one at the hospital asked if she had recently received a vaccination. Even though many of her symptoms were neurological, her brain scan came back normal. All they could say was that it was not normal for such a previously healthy girl to suffer these symptoms. There were no answers.
Almost two years later, Annabelle’s family still has no answer from the coroner as to her cause of death. The coroner could find no reason.
In the name of Annabelle, and all of the girls across Canada, her family fights for a public investigation into the circumstances surrounding Annabelle’s death. They want to see no more reports of fatalities after HPV vaccinations.