Featured image via Shutterstock and does not show Alexander Bowes. Photo for representational purposes only.
Little Alexander Bowes from Lancaster, U.K. tragically passed away without warning the day after Christmas 2021. Now, his grieving mother, Emily Cooper, is raising awareness for Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood.
According to LancsLive reports, 3-year-old Alexander spent Christmas Day dancing to music on Christmas Day with his little brother, Freddie. The following day, on December 26th, Alexander began to feel under the weather.
“He was just a little bit tired and unwell with on and off tummy bug symptoms,” Cooper told LancsLive. “On Boxing Day [26 December], he’d been a bit unwell but no temperature or anything, nothing particularly serious.”
Later, Cooper went on a walk with Freddie. When she came home, there was a police van outside her house.
“[We] went straight to the hospital and he died later that evening,” she said.
In an interview with Newsweek, Cooper remembered her little boy’s kind heart and spirit.
“Alexander was the most joyous, kind and beautiful boy. He had a seemingly healthy and happy life, loved spending time with family and especially his best friend, his little brother Freddie,” she recalled. “He was always content whatever he was doing, but especially loved cars, Peter Rabbit, and ice cream.”
Now, she is speaking out about the pain of losing a child with no answers for closure.
“When he died unexpectedly on Boxing Day, following a lovely family Christmas, we found ourselves with no answers and just had to try and cope with the grief knowing that they may never come,” she explains. “Alexander had experienced mild tummy bug symptoms but this has so far not been identified as a cause. Nothing has.”
In an effort to aid research for Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood, Cooper and Alexander’s father, Darren Bowes, are working with SUDC U.K. to raise awareness and funds. Their relationship with the organization began when the SUDC reached out to the couple to offer support following their loss.
“They provided solidarity, useful resources explaining about SUDC and offered guidance in navigating the unimaginable such as the post mortem process,” she said.
According to SUDC U.K., which was founded by three bereaved mothers and partners of the global SUDC Foundation, Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood ‘can affect children of any age from 1 to 18, but it appears to be most prevalent in toddlers and children in their late teens.’
The charity states that research has identified some commonalities in SUDC cases, including unwitnessed deaths during sleep, with the child found sleeping on their front. African American children are twice as likely to die from SUDC.
Cooper explains: “SUDC U.K. are also funding and promoting much-needed research in order to try and understand SUDC, in the hope that one day families like ours might not suffer this horrendous loss.”
For more information on Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood, visit www.sudc.org.