Death of son shatters couple's dreams

A young couple from Tanugamanono are still trying to come to terms with the loss of their 12-month-old baby.

Satijayden Peterphilip Junior became the latest fatality of the measles crisis which has so far claimed 73 lives.

The baby was diagnosed with measles and moved between their home and the Tupua Tamasese Meaole National Hospital (T.T.M.) for over two weeks before he died on Sunday.

Daisy Junior, the mother of the deceased and her husband, Junior Ofisa, literally had the wind taken out of their sales when they lost their son.

The death was particularly difficult for Mrs. Ofisa, who wanted a child with her husband and even fasted and prayed, when she found out she was pregnant.

"After more than two months of being with my husband, our families and ourselves were very scared as we thought I'll never get pregnant," she said.

"And so we kept on praying to the heavenly father and we fasted for months until he gave us Jayden. But I guess he needed another angel in heaven so he took him."

Their baby was only admitted in the hospital for two days and were advised by the doctors to take him home, after he contracted the measles from his cousin who lives in the same house.

His cousin has recovered from the virus, but baby Jayden died in a cruel end to his illness.

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Mr. Ofisa is a seasonal worker, who is yet to reach the middle juncture of his employment contract, when his son’s affliction compelled him to return home.

Baby Jayden was the apple of his eye and the reason behind the long-hours of fruit picking abroad as a seasonal worker.

Today his father’s only feels a sense of helplessness.

"It was my dream to shower him with so many good and new things in this life so he can enjoy his childhood," he said, fighting back tears.

"Have you ever had that feeling where you prayed for a child and when you finally had one and then he gets taken away so suddenly?" 

Mrs. Ofisa said her son started feeling sick after his father left for seasonal work.

He contracted measles a few weeks later.

With his family being congregation members of the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Tanugamanono, baby Jayden was a church boy and a gift to his church-going family. 

His parents dreamt of him eventually becoming a church minister when he grew up to serve God and become a blessing to them. 

But those dreams have disappeared.

His body is now at the Sefo Pau funeral services awaiting burial.

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