When 19-year-old Emily Stillman of West Bloomfield died from a meningitis B infection in 2013, her mother, Alicia, promised her she would find out why and prevent it from happening to others.
Since then, Alicia Stillman has worked tirelessly to fulfill that vow. In June, Stillman took her fight straight to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. She shared her family’s anguish with the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, in hopes of making the vaccine that could have saved Emily available to everyone.
“I was there to tell the story of Emily,” said Stillman. “So nobody thinks she was just a number, nobody thinks she was just one of X amount who died that year. She was a real person. She was a real beautiful soul who had her whole life ahead of her.”