When 19-year-old Emily Stillman died of bacterial meningitis, no one could have predicted the influence it would have. Her death immediately gave five others the gift of life, and will save others in the future, thanks to her family’s fight for a vaccine against the disease that took their daughter.
Emily was a sophomore at Kalamazoo College when she died suddenly in February 2013 from the infection. Meningitis surrounds a person’s spinal cord and the brain.
“When they told me she had meningitis, I thought it wasn’t possible. I told them to please double-check the results,” said Emily’s mother, Alicia. “I sent my kids off to college, all my kids, with what I thought was full protection. I sent them with every vaccination that I was aware of.”