Oliver was a vibrant, bright, beautiful 15 year old who
loved her family, friends and life. Chelsea loved singing,
drawing and volunteering her time to help others. She
was involved in All-County Chorus for several years, had
several solo parts in the school chorus, was in poetry
club, loved drawing for Art class and volunteered her
time at the Boys & Girls Club. Chelsea sang the National
Anthem for the Canal Fest Race in 2008 and also sang for
the congregation at her Grandma's church. Her favorite
color was green, she loved peace symbols and her favorite
holiday was Halloween. She dreamed of being on American
Idol when she turned 16 and also wanted to become a Pediatrician
when she grew up so she could help children. Chelsea loved
everyone, no matter who they were, and always put herself
last. You'd never see her without a smile on her face...
she was such an amazing girl!
October 25, 2009, Chelsea was admitted into the ICU at
Children's Hospital after being ill for several days.
We were told that she had pneumonia and sepsis. Later
on, we learned she also had the H1N1 virus and MRSA. She
was immediately intubated, put in a medically induced
coma and placed on ECMO (a heart and lung machine.) The
ECMO machine was doing the work for her heart and lungs
so they could rest and heal on their own. Over the next
several days it was touch and go. She'd get a little better,
then would get worse again. Her heart was deteriorating
and she was in need of a heart transplant, but because
of her double-lung pneumonia, she wasn't a candidate.
On October 31st, she drastically took a turn for the worse.
Her vitals were all over the board and the nurses were
having a hard time getting them back to within normal
limits. Her organs were shutting down and she was very
jaundiced. She passed away in the middle of the night
on November 1, 2009.
weeks after Chelsea's passing, the H1N1 flu shot arrived
at all of the doctor's offices. They had been delayed
in getting here, and I can't help but wonder, if they
would've been on time and she had gotten that shot, if
it would've saved her life. Chelsea was healthy up until
this point and had no pre-existing conditions. I know
that Chelsea would want to be able to save others' lives
and wouldn't want anyone else to have to suffer the way
she did. This is the beginning of the Chelsea Oliver Foundation.