It has been nearly two years since tragedy struck the Florer family in what would be their final Christmas with their beautiful little girl. Brianna Florer was only 2-years-old when she was tragically taken from this world, but her story can help prevent future household accidents similar to hers.
Kent Vice had cared for his granddaughter since she was just a couple of weeks old. Her parents, Brian and Stephanie Florer, needed to return to their jobs, and left their baby daughter in the care of Grandpa’s capable hands.
Vice loved his granddaughter with all his heart and had developed a very special bond with Brianna. His eyes welling up with tears, Vice explains how a small circular button battery had taken little Brianna’s life.
It was 2015 when the toddler celebrated Christmas along with her family in rural Delaware County, Oklahoma.
Brianna had a low grade fever days prior to her taking seriously ill, but given the time of the year when such childhood sickness is common, Brian and Stephanie did not think much of it.
When Brianna’s face started to turn blue and she started vomiting blood, they knew something was seriously wrong.
They rushed their daughter to hospital, where emergency surgery was performed but to no avail – doctor’s could not stop the extreme internal bleeding in her tiny esophagus.
Unknown to her family, Brianna had at some point swallowed a button battery – a small flat battery which is circular in shape, very shiny and enticing to a small curious toddler of Brianna’s age.
Doctors came to the conclusion that the battery had been in her body approximately six days before her death.
“One minute she is perfect, and the next minute she is dead,” Vice said. “We had no idea when she swallowed it [the battery].”
The Florer family spent New Year’s Day preparing to bury their baby girl.
Christmas time will never be the same again for the Florer family, it will be a bittersweet memory of the happy bundle of energy that delighted in opening gifts and smiling at the Christmas tree lights.
Christmas is a time of fun and joy, receiving gifts from under the tree.
But parents need to be cautious at this time of year, many toys come with batteries or require batteries to be inserted. Keep loose batteries out of reach of young children, or in Vice’s opinion, out of your house completely.
His face flooded with emotion, Vice recalls the delightful little granddaughter he’d known since birth. “I took care of her — she was just an angel,” he expressed.
Brianna’s family are working towards raising awareness of the dangers of button batteries. Please consider sharing their daughter’s tragic story — it could possibly save a life.