A father and his two sons, poisoned by odorless insect repellent while on a vacation in the Virgin Islands four months ago, will probably never recover, doctors say.
Steve Esmond, 49, his sons Sean, 16, and Ryan, 14, and his wife Theresa Devine, 48, were all hospitalized with seizures after an incident in their $875-a-night condo in St. John, the Virgin Islands, on March 20.
The doctors’ examination discovered the cause: the Delaware family had been poisoned by Terminix, which contains methyl bromide — an odorless but very toxic chemical. It was used by staff to deal with indoor bugs. (Scroll down for the video.)
1. Sean Esmond, 16, (left) is “in and out of a coma”, while his brother Ryan, 14, (right) is paralyzed from the neck down.
The insect repellent has infected the victims’ neurosystems and on Thursday doctors stated that they do not expect them to recover.
Ryan Esmond is paralyzed from the neck down and has no control over his limbs, though he is aware of what has occurred.
Sean, on the other hand, is “in and out of a coma”, cannot feel his limbs and cannot move his body.
The teens’ father Steve is paralyzed and “must be strapped in to even sit”.
Theresa is the only victim who has shown a significant improvement and is described as being in a “good condition”.
The entire family are being treated in Philadelphia.
2. Middle school head teacher Steve, 49, (left) is also paralyzed; his wife Theresa, 48, (right) is recovering.
Stating the doctors’ consensus, Virgin Islands governor Kenneth Mapp said at a press conference on Thursday that the family’s prospects are not encouraging and added:
Doctors do not expect any significant recovery from their present condition.
Terminix, made by Tennessee-based Terminix International, has been banned for residential use since 1984. It is not allowed to be used inside because of its “acute toxicity” and can only be handled by “trained applicators”.
An initial investigation discovered that the Sinuresa resort sprayed Terminix in the lobby to get rid of “indoor bugs”.
3. All four were hospitalized with seizures in their $875-a-night condo in St. John (pictured) on March 20.
Local authorities have since issued bans on the chemical’s use to three manufacturers in the area. Furthermore, Jose Rivera, the local manager of Terminix International, has had his license revoked.
The family has not yet filed any legal action against the firm. They have issued a statement which reads, in part:
The family is confident that those responsible will be brought to justice.
The U.S. Department of Justice has launched a criminal investigation into the issue.
4. A family is poisoned at a luxury resort in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Read more: Virgin Islands Daily News.
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