Father says son died of the flu in West Palm Beach

Author: Gary Detman, CBS12
The father of Dylan Winnik says he died from the flu. (Photo courtesy of WPEC)

The father of a 12-year-old boy found dead in a home in West Palm Beach told CBS12 his son died of the flu. If confirmed, it would be the first flu-related death in Palm Beach County this year.

Sergio Winnik told CBS12 that his son, Dylan Winnik, went to school on Friday and a birthday party over the weekend when he came home with a fever. Sergio said Dylan had the chills but the fever went down. The father said he had a naturalization ceremony to run to at the South Florida Fair and asked if his son wanted to go with him. His son told him that he just wanted to stay home and watch TV.

Sergio told CBS12 after being gone for almost two hours he called his son at home, but the boy wouldn’t pick up. The father told CBS12 he asked a neighbor to go check on his son. The neighbor did and found the boy in the bathroom.

“I don’t know, he died in there,” Sergio told CBS12.

According to the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, by the time deputies arrived the boy had already died.

The medical examiner will do an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.

Sergio says he has a pain in his chest that he can’t explain.

“From one moment to the next, you must be careful. My message to all parents, be careful with your kids. ”

GoFundMe page set up for Dylan described him as “highly intelligent, surprisingly funny, and always full of life busy with his two brothers.”

Dylan attended the 7th grade at Okeeheelee Middle School.

A spokesperson for Palm Beach County Schools said a letter went home to parents about Dylan’s death and counselors are on hand to meet with classmates.

The district says it has vaccinated over 13,000 student and staff for the flu at no charge.

Dylan’s father told CBS12 he did not get a flu shot.

A spokesman for the Health Department said there is no confirmation on the boy’s death being attributed to the flu. The determination will be made by the medical examiner.

Nationwide, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports at least 30 children have died from the flu this season.

If you need to find a place to get a flu shot near you, just visit the Health Department’s Flu Shot Locator.

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