Any individual can be allergic to any foods. Some are allergic to chicken, eggs, while others are sensitive to dairy and other meals. However, this 3-year-old boy died after suffering an adverse reaction to a grilled cheese sandwich served at school.

Elijah Silvera, 3, was a student at the Seventh Avenue Center for Family Services in Harlem. This is a partnership between the city’s Administration for Children’s Services and the Health Department. The site also houses New York City’s Universal Pre-K program, which is part of Mayor de Blasio’s plan to offer free prekindergarten to all 4-year-olds in New York City.

Following the incident, the school was closed by the Health Department for failing to supervise a minor and also for neglecting to follow its own established safety plan.

The family of the three-year-old boy says he was allergic to dairy. He, however, had been given a grilled cheese sandwich at school.

A cousin of Elijah’s father, Ruben Porras, said the school did not call an ambulance but rather his mother. She was then the one to take Elijah to the hospital. A Fire Department spokesman said that no F.D.N.Y. ambulances were dispatched to the pre-K facility that day as a result of the tragedy.

The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s spokesman, Mr. Christopher R. Miller, stated: “There is nothing more important than the safety of our children and we are deeply saddened by this tragedy. We will get to the bottom of what happened here. In the meantime, we closed the Center for Family Services and are continuing to aggressively investigate what happened and whether the facility could have done something differently to prevent this tragedy.”

Elijah’s parents, Clayton and Shelby Miller, said that he was never allowed milk after being diagnosed with atopic dermatitis as an infant. The two were also asked if there was a safety plan in place for their son because of his severe reactions to dairy products. Miller declined to comment on whether or not there was an EpiPen on site that could have helped save the children’s lives by treating the symptoms. Only that ongoing investigation is underway, according to Miller.

A Deputy Commissioner with the Administration for Children’s Services, Lorelei A. Vargas, paid a visit to our school. Mr. Vargas said, “There were no red flags at the centre… We do believe that this was an isolated event.”

A family friend set up a GoFundMe account for the family of five. It said that on November 3rd., Elijah “was given a grilled cheese sandwich by an adult at the pre-K, despite them knowing and having documented that he has a severe allergy to dairy. Elijah went into anaphylactic shock and was taken to the Pediatric ER at Harlem Hospital, where, tragically, they were unable to save him.”

According to the GoFundMe page, the parents were also raising money for counseling for Elijah’s brother, 5-year-old Sebastian, and a second autopsy, – “it is unclear where responsibility for Elijah’s death will fall between the pre-K and the hospital itself… We dread the upcoming holiday season without our little boy. We are lost.”

When parents drop off their children at a daycare facility or school, they trust that the teachers will attend to their children’s needs. And it was just a simple mistake, such as this one, that went overlooked and led to the boys’ untimely death.