The family of a British schoolboy who died of an allergic reaction after eating a plate of spaghetti while on vacation in Italy described his tragic death as the “worst day of their lives”.
Seven-year-old Cameron Wahid suffered severe anaphylactic shock while eating pasta pudding at a restaurant in the town of Ravello on the Amalfi Coast, where he was spending a semester with his family.
Restaurant staff were warned of their son’s severe allergies, saying he couldn’t have cheese or dairy, but the waitress didn’t understand their request and assured them it was safe.
He collapsed after eating the pasta dish containing dairy products in front of his mother Cassandra, 43, his father Rizwan, 43, and his little brother Aidan.
Minutes after returning to their tour bus with other British tourists, Cameron went into shock before suffering cardiac arrest in the main square.
Ms Wahid, who was working as a nurse at the time, managed to give her son an EpiPen, but it was too late and the schoolboy died three days later on October 30, 2015, in a hospital about 35 miles away. from Naples.
After his tragic death, the family fought a long legal battle against the restaurant La Margherita Villa Giuseppina.
Ester Di Lascio, a waitress at the restaurant, was convicted of manslaughter by an Italian court in Salerno in September 2019. Di Lascio received a two-year suspended prison sentence.
She did not correctly highlight the possible allergic reactions caused by the ingredients of the dishes on the restaurant’s menu, the court found.
The pasta Cameron ate was served with a tomato sauce made with milk by chef Luigi Cioffi, who was later cleared of any wrongdoing.
The East Grinstead family in West Sussex were initially awarded compensation by the court of around £ 288,000 (AU $ 531,000).
Cameron has always had a severe dairy allergy, but his family said they were very careful about what he ate and we assured the wait staff that the food was safe.
They added that his death was preventable and that they still find it difficult to come to terms with his tragic passing.
Now, Cameron’s parents are calling for lessons to be learned from his death and want to raise awareness of the seriousness of allergies.
Mr Wahid started working as an Ambassador for Allergy UK, the UK’s leading charity providing support for people with allergies.
He said this week: “Cameron’s allergy has always been severe, but we were so careful with him and scrupulous with what he ate.
“Prior to his allergic reaction, the wait staff assured us that the food was safe for him.
“Watching him go into anaphylactic shock and suffer like that was without a doubt the worst experience of our life.
“He was a lovely little boy and he always brightened our days.
“We know nothing will bring him back”
“We believe his death was preventable and we still find it difficult to accept that he is no longer here.
“We know nothing will bring him back, but we want to help prevent others from suffering from the pain that we continue to feel.
“People need to know how serious allergies can be, and we will continue to work on awareness as needed.
“We are grateful that the matter is now over and we would like to thank everyone for all the support we have received.
“For us, it was all about using the criminal trial process in Italy to ensure justice is done for Cameron, which we did, as well as establishing facts and learning lessons so others didn’t. to suffer as one has. “
It comes after the family received an undisclosed sum of money to help access specialist support and overcome their ordeal.
Daniel Matchett, the international serious injury lawyer at Irwin Mitchell representing the family, said: “The past few years have been incredibly difficult for Cameron’s family, having watched him die of an allergic reaction that could have and should have been avoided.
“Cassandra and Riz have always been very careful about controlling Cameron’s allergies, and losing him has had such a devastating impact on them.
“While they can’t go back and change what happened, Cassandra and Riz want to make people aware that allergies are potentially life-threatening to make sure no one else is going through what they are. have. “