Hot topics | Coronavirus pandemic

A high school senior from Kalamazoo, who died of COVID-19, was remembered for love of dancing and family

A high school senior from Kalamazoo, who died of COVID-19, was remembered for love of dancing and family

Taigan Bradford's mother thought nothing of her daughter's stinky nose and sore throat in November.

Omeka Bradford would be rushed to the hospital within a week.

Taigan, a senior at Kalamazoo Central High School, died Tuesday, January 11, after a nearly two-month battle against COVID-19, according to her mother.

Taigan, a high school student, was diagnosed with a comorbid illness the week before Thanksgiving. After experiencing a stuffed nose and cough, Taigan would later develop severe body aches, headache, nausea, and weakness, according to her mother.

Bradford said she walked out of her room and couldn't breathe.

Taigan was admitted to the Bronson Methodist Hospital on November 26, where she was moved to the intensive care unit. After experiencing her own symptoms and testing positive, Omeka had to leave the hospital for 15 days to stay.

Taigan was transferred to Mott Children's Hospital in Ann Arbor when she returned on December 12th.

Taigan was put in a coma at Mott while being given medication for breathing, according to her mother. Days passed and Taigan seemed to be improving.

Omeka said she was starting to do better. I dont know what happened.

The teenager's health fell on a downward trajectory, and on Tuesday, her mother was called to return to the hospital, where she was greeted by teams of doctors trying to revive her daughter.

They lost her, she said in a celebration room.

Taigan, 17, was kept in a room behind glass while her family could only communicate with her through a walkie-talkie on Tuesday morning. She was about to be cleared for visitors as nurses told her she was even trying to sit up on her own.

Bradford said, I said that a girl is strong, and shes a fighter.

As funeral arrangements are underway, the teen's mother said she is urging school leaders to close district buildings and return to synchronous virtual learning, as they did in the 2020-21 school year.

According to the researcher, her daughter got COVID-19 at school.

Bradford believes the schools cannot keep up on the number of positive incidents and maintain good buildings.

The district was closed for the entire school year 2020-21, but returned to in-person learning this fall. Masks are required for all students and staff as they travel the streets and on the bus. According to KPS, 170 cases have been reported among students since returning from winter break Monday, January 3.

In time for publication, a spokesperson for Kalamazoo Public Schools would not be contacted.

The high schooler was excited to take her driver's test and be able to drive without her mother in the car, her mother said.

She was waiting for that graduation and walking that stage, she told her mother.

Taigan planned to attend Kalamazoo Valley Community College, for nursing, after high school, and to move to Texas -- somewhere warm.

Bradford described her daughter as "very silly" and loved her family, dancing, cooking, and her goldendoodle, in Jersey.

She had this laugh that -- it was so loud, she said. It stopped people and people looked. She laughed at everything.

Taigan and her family were hesitant about getting the COVID-19 vaccination, according to Bradford. Seeing others in their family still get sick from the disease despite being vaccinated and stories of people having adverse reactions delayed their decision.

After talking to their doctor, Bradford said his family had made up their minds and were planning to get their shots.

Bradford is currently waiting to be eligible for the vaccination after contracting COVID-19 before, and her younger daughter is awaiting her second dosage.

The grieving mother has urged other people to take the most seriously necessary steps to get them tested.

Also on MLive:

You may also like: