GRAPHIC: Mother Says Two Vinita Boys Severely Sunburned On Daycare Trip
VINITA, Oklahoma - An Oklahoma mother says her two young sons were severely sunburned while in the care of a Vinita daycare.
Shaunna Broadway says the 'Happiness Is A Learning Center' let her 5- and 7-year-old sons play outside Friday without shirts or sunscreen. When the boys got home their mother says they were crying and large, painful blisters had formed on their backs and shoulders.
"They didn't put no sunscreen on them and no shirt and when I asked them about it, they claimed they were out of sunscreen and that they told the kids to put on their shirts, but they didn't want to leave them on," Broadway said.
Broadway says her boys were sent home from two different hospitals with pain medication and cream, but says neither provided her sons with relief.
"Then things got worse, especially with my oldest one. He started to started to complain of chest pains and not being able to breathe and his chest started swelling," she said.
That's when Broadway took her boys to the Hillcrest Medical Center Burn Unit in Tulsa. Within 10 minutes, she says she was told her sons needed to be life-flighted to Shriner's Hospital in Texas, which has children's facility that specializes in burns.
Seven-year-old Conner Harvey and his 5-year-old brother, Trae Wells, are being treated for second and third-degree sunburns.
"To think that a kid could get that burned in the care of a daycare, I have no words," Broadway said. "It's just a lot because it's just me. I'm trying to be strong for them."
Vinita Police say a report was filed Sunday. According to the report, the children were sunburned when they went with the daycare to the city's new splash pad Friday.
The family shared numerous photos of the boys, many of them showing their backs and shoulders covered with blisters.
"Right's right, and wrong's wrong, and there's no excuse for this," Shaunna said. "I'm a single parent, and I do all I can. I work Monday through Friday, and they have to go to daycare. I don't have the luxury to just have somebody that I can just have watch them outside daycare."
We went to the daycare to find out more, but the manager told us she has no comment. We learned the daycare has been cited by the Department of Human Services 19 times in the past year, mainly for staffing, signage and scheduling issues.
Broadway says she just wants the daycare to take responsibility, so what happened to her sons happens to no one else.
"Whether it was intentional or not intentional, they were supposed to take care of them, and they did not - and that's the bottom line," she said.
DHS and the Vinita Police Department are investigating, while Broadway prays her boys find peace in Texas.
"It's the well-being of my kids and seeing them in pain, I just want them back to normal," she said.
Broadway says she and her sons will likely be at the Shriner's Hospital in Galveston all week.