Myocarditis Claims the Life of a Young Girl Following Cold-Like Symptoms

Danielle’s Parents Hope to Help Prevent this Tragedy from Happening to Others

As told by Danielle’s parents, Steve and Karen Hymowitz

Danielle Zoe was born on Nov. 27, 1996 the day before Thanksgiving along with her two sisters, Lexi and Nicki. Danielle was a triplet, a precious gift. She had chubby cheeks, golden curls and huge expressive eyes.

Danielle was an old soul in little girl’s shoes. She was sweet and sensitive, was loved so much because a smile never left her face.

As a young adult Danielle enjoyed writing, tennis, knitting and ice skating. She had just completed fourth grade and was looking forward to starting middle school.

On July 26, 2007, it was a routine summer day at camp. At noon, Danielle went swimming and stepped out shortly with complaints of exhaustion, shortness of breath and chest pain. She went to the camp nurse with complaints of stomach and headaches. She had an elevated pulse, respirations and not much of an appetite. After resting, she was sent to her next activity. Danielle returned to the nurse’s office. Seemingly anxious, the nurse tried to alleviate her anxiety through breathing techniques. A short time later, Danielle’s mother was called to pick her up.

When Danielle arrived home, she vomited and became lethargic. Paramedics came quickly and transported her to the hospital ER. Within 15 minutes of arrival at the hospital, with resuscitative measures to no avail, Danielle passed away, only four hours after the onset of symptoms.

Perhaps even worse than Danielle’s untimely death, was not knowing the cause. Two months later we were told viral myocarditis. She had an insignificant cold one week prior to her passing. How is it possible to die from a cold? It is incomprehensible.

The sudden and devastating loss of our precious daughter Danielle has left an emptiness in our hearts. However, our hope and goal together with The Myocarditis Foundation is to raise awareness, and educate doctors and specialists alike to help eradicate this disease and prevent this tragedy from happening to other families.

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