Lotion Applied To Sunburned Vinita Boys Came From Daycare, Grandmother Says

Monday, August 3rd 2015, 6:19 pm
By: Tess Maune

The two young Vinita boys whose mom said received severe sunburns while at daycare are doing better, but there are still questions about what caused the burns.

The Vinita Police chief said two doctors, who did not treat the boys, suggested a petroleum-based lotion may have kept heat from escaping, causing the burns to blister.

But the boys' grandmother said a doctor prescribed the medication the family used.

She said she feels like her daughter is being tried in the media after the police chief said he believes a person who loves the boys dearly might have made a mistake while trying to help ease the pain.

The boys’ grandmother, Terry Coatney, said if lotion caused the blisters it was at the hands of the daycare.

When brothers Trae Wells and Conner Harvey were picked up from daycare the evening of July 24th, their mother said she instantly knew they'd gotten too much sun.

Pictures show the 5 and 7 year old boys with sunburns on their backs and shoulders.

7/27/2015 Related Story: GRAPHIC: Mother Says Two Vinita Boys Severely Sunburned On Daycare Trip

Their grandmother said a nearly two-hour daycare trip to a splash pad without sunscreen is only partly to blame.

“When they went back to that daycare they were outside again the rest of the afternoon,” she said.

Vinita's police chief said security camera footage proves the children were at the splash pad, in both the sun and shade, from 9:45 to 11:30.

7/30/2015 Related Story: Video Shows Timeline Of Vinita Boys In Sun At Splash Pad, Police Say

And while the chief said the owner of Happiness is a Learning Center admits not putting sunscreen on the children, he said she denied the children played outside when they got back - there are no cameras at the daycare to use as evidence.

Coatney said the horrible blisters didn't appear right away. She believes the sun caused them to form, leaving the boys with second- and third-degree burns.

The police chief said after consulting with two doctors, it's believed a petroleum-based cream could have possibly caused the burns to worsen and blister.

The grandmother said if a lotion is to blame, it was applied before the boys left the daycare.

“The first thing that was ever put on those children was vinegar and a lotion from the daycare lady herself,” Coatney said.

She said Conner and Trae were prescribed a cream during one of their ER trips, but the blisters were already there and the damage already done.

“No child should ever go through that kind of pain in a lifetime, let alone in the few days that I witness that,” Coatney said.
Conner and Trae were life-flighted to Shriner's Hospital in Texas for treatment.

Their grandmother said the boys are still in a lot of pain, but doing better.

She also said her daughter, who has been with the boys the whole time, has not been questioned by police. The chief said it's because he wants to talk with the mother in person.

The daycare voluntarily shut down for good and said it has no comment regarding the case.

7/28/2015 Related Story: Vinita Daycare Center Accused In Severe Sunburn Case Closes Down