THE family of 12-year-old Akazea Austin was on Monday plunged into mourning after she succumbed to the injuries she sustained in an accident on February 13.
Austin was struck down by a Linden taxi driver on the Supply, East Bank Demerara public road, while making her way home.
According to reports, the Diamond Secondary School student had exited a mini-bus and while attempting to cross the road, the driver of the vehicle she was in signalled to other drivers using the road to stop, so that the preteen could safely cross.
However, while crossing, Austin was hit from behind by a car, HC 7963, which was heading to Linden. She immediately lost consciousness and was rushed to the Diamond Diagnostic Centre; she was subsequently transferred to the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPH). It is alleged that investigations revealed that the 45-year-old taxi-driver was speeding and as a result could not slow down to allow Austin to cross the road.
An emotional Loraina Waddle stated that she cannot believe that her daughter is gone, as the preteen was recovering well in recent months. She described her late daughter as a brilliant and good child, who was very helpful. She said that since Austin had sustained severe lung damage in the accident, she was breathing through a tube.
Waddle informed this newspaper that her daughter was due for a surgery that would have resulted in a better alternative to the tube. She explained that earlier this week, her daughter began having difficulty with the equipment.
“I would go to the clinic to get the doctor that was in charge of her, but I didn’t get to see him. Like three days before she died she get this blockage and she was breathing hard and I would take it out get it washed, put it in back and she would still be breathing hard, and Monday she went good good and then she started panting for breath,” said waddle.
Waddle stated that following this, she took her daughter to the hospital where the doctor broke the news to her that her daughter did not make it. She said the news was surreal to her because she never expected her to die, given the progress she had made since the accident.
Akazea is one of six children for her mother.
Meanwhile, the family is still awaiting the court’s ruling on the accident. Waddle told the Guyana Chronicle that prior to her daughter’s death, the driver had made an attempt to settle with the family. She said she declined to accept the $350,000 which was offered, as she felt it was insufficient at that time to cover her daughter’s medical costs.