“Goodnight, I love you”. These were the last words of a three-year-old boy to his mother before he suddenly died just hours after he was put to bed.
Mum, Jasmine Shortland, 23, was left heartbroken after her son, Bryan-Andrew Lock died of suspected Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood (SUDC) at his grandparents’ house in Somerset, UK. She said that she will never forget their final conversation as he phoned her to say goodnight.
“It means so much that I heard him say “I love you”. It is so nice that those were his last words – it is much better than him crying or anything like that. He sounded happy,” she said.
Bryan-Andrew had gone to stay at his grandmother’s house for the week with his one-year-old brother, Austin because doctors thought he might have mumps and Miss Shortland did not want the illness to be passed on to her four-month-old son, Ivan.
Miss Shortland recalled that Bryan-Andrew told her over the phone that he’s not feeling well and she said she will come to see him when he’s better. A few hours after he was tucked in, Bryan-Andrew woke up and asked his grandmother, Debbie Lock, 50, for a juice drink.
The next morning, Miss Shortland and her partner Josh Westcott, 20, were woken by her stepfather, David banging on the front door and told them the bad news. “He was crying, he said ‘Bryan’s gone’. I just fell on the floor screaming and crying,” she said.
She said that her mum told her that Austin had woken up first and she thought that was strange because Bryan-Andrew always woke up first. “She went in the bedroom and she could see he’d gone. She screamed to David, he rushed in started doing everything he could, he was trying to do mouth to mouth, but his little jaw had locked,” Miss Shortland said.
Bryan-Andrew was taken to Yeovil Hospital, but his heart had stopped beating. Doctors told the family, Bryan-Andrew’s death was possibly caused by SUDC, which is similar to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), but affects older children.
“I just broke down when they told us he’d gone. Josh and I collapsed on the floor and I was just screaming.
“You just can’t explain to people what it feels like – I have to go on because of the other two, but it’s like a huge hole where something’s missing.
“I just can’t believe he’s gone,” Miss Shortland said.
The family have launched a GoFundMe appeal to raise money for Bryan-Andrew’s funeral on September 1.