Carbon monoxide found in Boone hotel where 11-year-old died

Carbon monoxide found in Boone hotel where 11-year-old died

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by MICHELLE BOUDIN / NBC Charlotte & WCNC.com

Bio | Email | Follow: @MichelleBoudin

WCNC.com

Posted on June 9, 2013 at 10:37 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 13 at 8:33 PM

BOONE, N.C. -- The Watauga County Health Department said carbon monoxide was found at the Best Western in Boone where a 11-year-old boy died this past weekend. The health department official did not say if that is what led to the death of the child.

The family of the Rock Hill boy who was found dead in a Boone hotel room say they blame the Best Western and want answers. The hotel room where they stayed was above a natural gas heater for the indoor pool. NBC Charlotte learned Monday afternoon the hotel was order to correct its ventilation system immediately after a previous inspection, before the boy died.

Health inspectors would not comment on what follow up happened after the order to change the system.

Police say Jeffrey Williams died and his mother Jeannie Williams, 49, was rushed to the hospital when they were found.

Relatives say Jeannie is doing better and came out of a medically induced coma Sunday, but does not know what happened to her.

Mother and son were staying in the hotel while waiting to pick up Jeffrey’s sister who was attending a camp there in the mountains.

When they didn’t arrive, family members called the hotel and they got in touch with the police.

In April, an elderly couple was found dead in the same room. Boone Sgt. Shane Robbins said Saturday, “At this time there is nothing to indicate that the two are linked.” The correction to the ventilation system was ordered before the couple died.

Darryl Williams, the boys’ uncle, told NBC Charlotte the family is devastated and angry.

"He was killed by the hotel and the problem is we don't know what it was," he said.

NBC Charlotte contacted Best Western for comment, but thus far officials have not responded.

Family members say Jeffrey was a typical 11 year old. He liked to play video games and played the violin.
 
The business remains closed and under the control of investigators, according to Boone police.

The North Carolina State Board of Examiners of Plumbing, Heating and Fire Sprinkler Contractors will have investigators in Boone on Wednesday.

“We would like to commend all of the agencies that have responded to assist the Town of Boone during this investigation.  We are committed to finding the cause of this tragic event," Boone Chief of Police Dana Crawford and Fire Chief Jimmy Isaacs said in a joint statement.

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